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World MTBO Championships: Finland and Czech Republic take Relay golds

Finland had a comfortable win in the women’s race, and the Czech men’s team made it a championships double with an equally clear victory.

The strong Finnish women’s team finished 3.18 ahead of France, but it was France (Lou Denaix) in the lead by a small margin after the first leg. Antonia Haga came through the second changeover 14 seconds ahead of Austria with France third a further 5 seconds down, then Marika Hara made the Finnish victory certain. Olga Shipilova-Vinogradova pulled Russia up from fifth to third place on then last leg, finishing 2 seconds ahead of Austria and only 12 seconds behind France.

Finnish team celebrates gold     Photos: Hans Jørgen Kvåle

The Czech Republic started as favourites for the men’s win after their success at the European Championships, but were only sixth after leg 1, where Russia (Grigory Medvedev) came first to the changeover. Finland (Jussi Laurila) led by 2 seconds after leg 2, but Krystof Bogar made no mistake on the last leg, ending with a lead of 3.52 over Finland. Russia took bronze, just 2 seconds behind Finland, and there was then a gap of more than 5 minutes until the fourth team France finished.

Clear victory for the Czech men – no other team in sight!

Finland took both titles in the Junior Relays, so a fine day for Finland overall with 3 gold medals and one silver.

Tomorrow is a well-deserved rest day, and competition continues on Friday with the Long Distance race.

Leading results


  1. Finland (Ingrid Stengard, Antonia Haga, Marika Hara) 2:31:18
  2. France (Lou Denaix, Hana Garde, Gaelle Barlet) 2:34:36
  3. Russia (Anastasiya Svir, Svetlana Poverina, Olga Shipilova-Vinogradova) 2:34:48
  4. Austria, 5. Lithuania, 6. Czech Republic


  1. Czech Republic (Vojtech Stransky, Vojtech Ludvik, Krystof Bogar) 2:36:17
  2. Finland (Andre Haga, Jussi Laurila, Pekka Niemi) 2:40:09
  3. Russia (Grigory Medvedev, Anton Foliforov, Ruslan Gritsan) 2:40:11
  4. France, 5. Lithuania, 6. Denmark

Junior Women: Gold, Finland; Silver, Russia; Bronze, Czech Republic

Junior Men: Gold, Finland; Silver, Czech Republic; Bronze, France


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