TFR is hungry to perform at one of XC's fiercest and most beloved tracks
The XC World Cup is moving swiftly from one iconic course to another. Nové Město will be familiar to the Trek Factory Racing XC squad, and they may even appreciate the reprieve from all those long climbs.
They shouldn’t expect an easy go, however. Nové Město may not test pure climbing fitness as acutely as Albstadt, but it does feature a full spectrum of obstacles to stress the entire XC skillset. Riders will need to be sharp to stay at the front.
Safe to say, the TFR XC crew is looking forward to this race. Last weekend didn’t quite go as planned for many of the riders. Jolanda Neff, Anton Cooper, Riley Amos and Hattie Harnden all struggled to find their legs at times, resulting in finishes that were just shy of their lofty standards. Evie Richards is still battling a back injury. And Maddie Munro couldn’t race at all after suffering a bad crash during pre-riding (though some great news: She’s been cleared to race this weekend.)
Vlad Dascalu headlined the weekend by taking third in the men’s XCO race for the second World Cup in a row, though even he wasn’t immune to bad luck. To make the podium, he had to mount a daring comeback after his saddle broke during the second lap. He also started from the fourth row for the second straight World Cup XCO after sitting out the short track race to rest up from an illness.
In short: The team is due some good fortune this week. And thankfully, the vibes are sky high, especially for a tough track that is nonetheless among the riders’ favorites on the circuit due to its variety and flow. Last year, five TFR riders finished in the top eight of their events in Nové Město. With seven riders in tow this year, the team has a chance to set a new benchmark.
No matter what happens, Nové Město is going to be a blast, but there’s no question that the TFR XC crew is hungry to perform.
Albstadt rewarded zippy climbers, especially on a relatively dry day. Nové Město will reward riders with a host of strong suits. It features roughly 383 feet of climbing per lap across frequent short, punchy ascents. No part of the track stays smooth for long, with several key sections of densely packed roots and rocks. A rocky sector on the “Shimano Expert Climb” early in the lap could be especially slippery and difficult to grip should there be rain.
Nové Město even features a pump track and fast road section to close each lap. Technicians and sprinters rejoice.
The forecast looks clear and pleasant for now — 70 degrees, partly cloudy, light wind — but since when are the whims of the weather gods predictable? Nové Město has seen plenty of muddy racing over the years, turning an already relentless course into a brutal battle of attrition.
In sum, be ready for anything and everything.
Schedule and how to watch
Red Bull TV will stream all elite racing live for FREE. Just click right here on this link to watch Friday’s short track races and Sunday’s elite XCOs.
Unfortunately, Saturday’s junior and U23 events are not available for streaming, but you can check out the weekend schedule below for when to keep an eye out for race updates:
- Women’s elite XC short track — 6 p.m. local, noon ET
- Men’s elite XC short track — est. 6:45 p.m. local, 12:45 p.m. ET
- Men’s junior XCO — 9:15 a.m. local, 3:15 a.m. ET
- Women’s junior XCO — est. 11:15 a.m. local, 5:15 a.m. ET
- Men’s U23 XCO — 3 p.m. local, 9 a.m. ET
- Women’s U23 XCO — est. 4:30 p.m. local, 10:30 a.m. ET
- Women’s elite XCO — 11:20 a.m. local, 5:20 a.m. ET
- Men’s elite XCO — 3:20 p.m. local, 9:20 a.m. ET