Rebecca McConnell charging in the Nove Mesto XCO

Nove Mesto World Cup: Can Anyone Stop McConnell?

With the way the 2022 season started, Nove Mesto in the Czech Republic was setup to be a thriller of a World Cup round. It seems like race after race this year has been filled with excitement, drama, and nail-biting finishes – Nove Mesto had it all.

Kate Courtney leading a pack of riders in Nove Mesto

The races kicked off as usual with the XCC on Friday. Athletes seem to be pushing harder and harder in this series as the season progresses and the competition is at an all-time high in both the men and women’s categories. Rebecca McConnell (PMG Racing Team), in the best form of her life, placed second in the women’s XCC. Trying to maintain his lead in the overall, Nino Schurter (SCOTT-SRAM MTB Racing) slid into the top 10 in ninth place.

Nino Schurter leading a pack of riders in Nove Mesto

Sunday’s XCO over delivered on the excitement – quite possibly one of the most exciting World Cup races to date! Rebecca McConnell showed she’s on another level and on the last two laps, blew past the other riders to ANOTHER XCO win. Her nearest competition was 40 seconds behind her at the end of the race, with third place well over a minute back. Joining her on the podium was Maxxis athlete Caroline Bohé (Ghost Factory Racing) in fifth place.

Rebecca celebrating after a Nove Mesto podium

In the men’s XCO, it was a tight race until the very end with everybody changing positions and making pushes constantly. Unfortunately, Nino Schurter had a mechanical and lost over a minute of time after being in the leader’s group. However, the world has learned to never count Nino Schurter out and this time was no exception. After stopping in the pits, Nino charged and gained back over a minute of time to get all the way back to the leader’s group and place third on the day – truly one of the most amazing performances we’ve ever seen from this man.

Nino bombing down a Nove Mesto rock garden

With many more races to come this year, Maxxis is stoked to see Nino and Rebecca both sitting in first place for the overall. Next up, Leogang on June 10-12!

Imagery: Michal Cerveny, Francisco Bandin