On a course in the city centre of Chur, that sometimes feels more like a Belgian criterium course than a XCO race, Jordan Sarrou finished fourth. The French rider from team BMC is satisfied with a spot on the podium, after not having raced for more than a month due to a broken pinkie finger.
Team BMC headed out to Chur with the full equipe, including Steffi Häberlin who raced and explored the course before the men in her home country. After a strong start, she lost some positions, but fought back strongly, resulting in an 18th place at the finish.
Also off for a head start, a few hours after Häberlin, is Jordan Sarrou, the man who returns to racing in Chur. A strong opening lap leads him into a front group, while not far behind him Juri Zanotti (ultimately 22nd) and local hero Janis Baumann battle to bridge the gap to the leaders.
Hearing ‘Janis’ a lot around the course encouraged Baumann enormously. As he crossed the line as number 20 in the race, he thanked the fans who shouted his name all race long. “It is fantastic to race in front of friends and family who came out to watch”, he says after the finish.
Meanwhile, Titouan Carod, unfortunately, suffers from some physical issues and decides not to finish the race after a small but unpleasant meeting with Swiss soil. With the World Cup in Nové Mesto ahead, the French national champion does not want to take any risk.
Sarrou, though, puts up a show in Chur, answering punchy attacks from his competitors. On the ‘physically demanding course’, he is happy with a top 5.
“Even though my finger is not fully healed, it is great to be back racing. I didn’t feel my finger during the race, which is a good sign. It was all day long on the limit, and this result, after being absent for more than a month, is a moral booster towards Nové Mesto next weekend.”