Maribor 4X World Cup Report

Photos and Words: Colin Meagher

Definitely a mud spike 4X course here in Maribor, as riders splash into the second set of doubles on the track.

Definitely a mud spike 4X course here in Maribor, as riders splash into the second set of doubles on the track.

With all the rain it was a bit of a slop fest for the 4X finals. The track looked as if a tanker truck of peanut butter spilled out on the ground. In all fairness, though, the conditions were the same for all riders, making it a fair race.

Graves, Inside-outside for the lead over Tatarkovic,  while Luka Novak (16) slams the door on Felix Beckemen (57).

Graves, Inside-outside for the lead over Tatarkovic, while Luka Novak (16) slams the door on Felix Beckemen (57).

Here in Maribor if you drill the hole shot the race is yours to lose, but then again, it’s still 4X racing and anything can happen (as was shown here two years ago with Brian Lopes rear wheel QR popping open in the second straight, sending him out early).

Anita Molcik drills the opening round of the women's four cross race, getting the hole shot and then some.

Anita Molcik drills the opening round of the women's four cross race, getting the hole shot and then some.

In the women’s race, Emmeline Ragot tangled with Anita Molcik in the semi finals early as they headed into turn one. Bang, game over and take a ticket to the small final for your troubles… In an interesting note, Molcik took an extra lane over from Ragot for the small finals, which she went on to win, and took the bottom step of the podium in the process. A similar tangle decided the women’s final with Anneke Beerten and Caroline Buchanan getting knotted up in turn two, allowing Fionn Griffiths and Sarsha Huntington to go one-two, with Beerten taking third over Buchanan.

"I only run four gears on the bike, stated Graves. "I don't really ever need more than three, to be honest. On this track I only used one."

With Jared Graves coming out swinging in Houffalize, and taking hole shot after hole shot with authority in Maribor, it looked as if ‘Grubby’ Graves was going to be the man on top yet again. Alas for the Aussie, it was not to be.

Tomas Slavik of the RSP 4X racing team had noted Graves’ tendency to go outside on the second turn and opted to try an inside-outside move, cutting tight to the gate. He slid out in the effort, forcing Graves and Joost Wichman to almost a full stop. Worse for Graves, this allowed Michal Marosi to shoot by and seize a commanding lead. Graves held off Wichman for second. Kamil Tatarkovic took the win in the small final and the last podium spot.

Graves had made it a habit of going outside on the first two turns of the track. Going into the second turn on the final, Tomas Slavik was already thinking to take advantage of that with the inside-outside move (note his head starting to lead for the gate) only to slide out as he came across in front of Graves. It didn't take Graves out, but slowed him up enough to allow a hard charging Michal Marosi to take the lead and the win.

Graves had made it a habit of going outside on the first two turns of the track. Going into the second turn on the final, Tomas Slavik was already thinking to take advantage of that with the inside-outside move (note his head starting to lead for the gate) only to slide out as he came across in front of Graves. It didn't take Graves out, but slowed him up enough to allow a hard charging Michal Marosi to take the lead and the win.

Results:
Men:
1. Michal Marosi (RSP 4 CROSS RACING TEAM)
2. Jared Graves (YETI FOX SHOX FACTORY RACE TEAM)
3. Joost Wichman (RSP 4 CROSS RACING TEAM)
4. Tomas Slavik (RSP 4 CROSS RACING TEAM)
5. Kamil Tatarkovic

Women:
1. Fionn Griffiths (NORCO WORLD TEAM)
2. Sarsha Huntington
3. Anneke Beerten (SUSPENSION CENTER)
4. Caroline Buchanan
5. Anita Molcik

Related Posts:

The Connect

Instagrams - @bikemag