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Cycling at the 2012 London Summer Games:

Men's Mountainbike, Cross-Country

Cycling at the 2012 Summer Games: Previous Summer Games

Events:
Phases:

Host City: London, Great Britain
Venue(s): Hadleigh Farm, Hadleigh, Essex
Date Started: August 11, 2012
Date Finished: August 11, 2012

Gold: CZE Jaroslav Kulhavý
Silver: SUI Nino Schurter
Bronze: ITA Marco Aurelio Fontana

Summary

In the men's mountain bike cross-country event, France's Julien Absalon looked to be the cyclist to beat: with victories in the discipline at the last two Olympics and four World Championship titles, he certainly had the pedigree to continue the defense of his title. At the 2011 World Championships, however, Absalon was outperformed by Jaroslav Kulhavý of the Czech Republic and Nino Schurter of Switzerland, who took gold and silver respectively in the tournament. Kulhavý had been the 2011 overall World Cup leader and had placed 18th at the 2008 Summer Olympics, while Schurter, who won bronze at the 2008 Games, had been the 2009 World Champion and the 2010 and 2012 overall World Cup leader. These three men had held eight of the last nine World Cup podium spots between them (Burry Stander of South Africa had been runner-up in 2012, knocking Absalon out of the medals) and looked to be the favorites at the 2012 Summer Games.

As in the women's event, where Catharine Pendrel of Canada finished ninth, men's Olympic mountain biking was not to be dominated by race favorite. Although Absalon and Schurter had a great start and led the pack for the first several minutes, Absalon suffered a puncture in the opening lap and abandoned the course. This left room for Schurter, Kulhavý, and Italian Marco Fontana, who had been fifth in Beijing, to form a lead group that began to drift from the rest of the cyclists, although they were soon joined by José Antonio Hermida of Spain, the 2004 Olympic silver medalist and 2010 World Champion. By the third lap Burry Stander of South Africa, fifteenth at the 2008 Games, caught up to the main group with an impressive charge after a poor start that left him in 11th place early in the race. These five men led the field for the remainder of the event, and it soon became clear among them who would be battling for the gold medal. Although at some point over the course each of these five riders made a charge for first place, and all were leading at some point, Hermida and Stander began to fade in the second half of the race, with Hermida having difficulty maintaining the pace and Stander seemingly exhausted from his initial charge to the lead group. Stander would attempt several more charges throughout the race, but fell back soon after each push, leaving Schurter, Kulhavý, and Fontana to compete for the medals.

In the final lap Fontana struggled to keep pace and eventually dropped far enough back that he was nearly overtaken by Hermida for the bronze medal. Schurter and Kulhavý never waned, however, and, unlike the women's race that had been decided long before the finish line, the men's event came down to a sprint between these two riders. In the end it was Kulhavý who earned the gold medal, edging out Schurter by one second, who was forced to settle for silver. Fontana managed to stave off Hermida's challenge, claiming bronze by a margin of four seconds, while Stander finished one second after Hermida, but still half a minute faster than the next rider. For Hermida it was his second fourth-place finish at the Olympics, following his performance at the 2000 Games (he had been tenth in Beijing).

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal T I1T I1R I2T I2R I3T I3R I4T I4R I5T I5R I6T I6R I7T I7R
1 Jaroslav Kulhavý 27 Czech Republic CZE Gold 1-29:07 0:53 9 13:02 1 25:33 1 38:18 1 51:14 2 1-03:41 1 1-16:47 2
2 Nino Schurter 26 Switzerland SUI Silver 1-29:08 0:49 1 13:02 2 25:33 2 38:18 2 51:14 1 1-03:43 2 1-16:47 1
3 Marco Aurelio Fontana 27 Italy ITA Bronze 1-29:32 0:51 6 13:03 3 25:34 3 38:18 3 51:15 4 1-03:44 3 1-16:48 3
4 José Antonio Hermida 33 Spain ESP 1-29:36 0:53 10 13:08 4 25:43 5 38:20 5 51:15 3 1-04:06 5 1-17:00 5
5 Burry Stander 24 South Africa RSA 1-29:37 0:55 19 13:17 11 25:43 4 38:19 4 51:15 5 1-03:57 4 1-17:00 4
6 Carlos Coloma 30 Spain ESP 1-30:07 0:52 7 13:16 10 26:12 12 39:05 11 51:59 9 1-04:43 7 1-17:28 7
7 Manuel Fumic 30 Germany GER 1-30:31 0:51 5 13:12 5 26:10 11 39:04 8 51:54 8 1-04:32 6 1-17:25 6
8 Geoff Kabush 35 Canada CAN 1-30:43 0:55 14 13:26 15 26:04 8 39:06 12 52:01 11 1-04:56 10 1-17:52 8
9 Alexander Gehbauer 22 Austria AUT 1-31:16 0:56 21 13:15 9 25:51 7 38:39 7 51:35 7 1-04:43 8 1-17:57 9
10 Todd Wells 36 United States USA 1-31:28 0:55 17 13:34 19 26:19 14 39:04 9 51:59 10 1-05:01 11 1-18:16 10
11 Stephane Tempier 26 France FRA 1-31:30 0:54 12 13:18 13 25:51 6 38:38 6 51:34 6 1-04:52 9 1-18:17 11
12 Jan Škarnitzl 26 Czech Republic CZE 1-31:48 0:58 32 13:43 23 26:45 18 39:46 18 52:40 16 1-05:39 14 1-18:35 12
13 Gerhard Kerschbaumer 21 Italy ITA 1-32:02 0:55 18 13:30 16 26:46 20 39:56 21 52:50 18 1-05:45 16 1-18:45 13
14 Ondřej Cink 21 Czech Republic CZE 1-32:16 0:58 29 13:37 20 26:32 16 39:33 15 52:29 14 1-05:38 13 1-18:47 14
15 Sam Schultz 26 United States USA 1-32:29 0:56 20 13:31 18 26:46 21 39:47 19 52:49 17 1-06:10 17 1-19:25 15
16 Marek Konwa 22 Poland POL 1-32:41 0:51 4 13:13 7 26:32 17 39:33 16 52:54 19 1-06:11 18 1-19:29 17
17 Rudi van Houts 28 Netherlands NED 1-32:53 0:52 8 13:17 12 26:08 10 39:18 13 52:29 13 1-05:41 15 1-19:30 18
18 Ralph Näf 32 Switzerland SUI 1-32:58 0:54 13 13:14 8 26:13 13 39:23 14 52:21 12 1-05:38 12 1-19:27 16
19 Kevin Van Hoovels 26 Belgium BEL 1-33:01 1:00 40 14:08 29 27:22 25 40:32 25 53:46 25 1-06:48 21 1-19:59 19
20 Karl Markt 32 Austria AUT 1-33:18 0:57 25 13:42 21 26:52 22 39:55 20 53:45 24 1-07:07 25 1-20:19 20
21 Daniel McConnell 27 Australia AUS 1-33:22 0:57 26 14:19 31 27:42 28 40:58 28 54:04 26 1-07:25 26 1-20:36 25
22 Sergio Mantecón 27 Spain ESP 1-33:46 0:55 16 13:26 14 26:32 15 39:46 17 53:04 20 1-06:20 19 1-20:30 23
23 David Rosa 25 Portugal POR 1-33:50 0:56 24 13:56 28 27:05 24 40:11 24 53:28 23 1-06:49 23 1-20:20 21
24 Rubens Donizete 32 Brazil BRA 1-34:23 0:57 27 13:47 25 27:04 23 40:10 23 53:28 22 1-06:48 22 1-20:31 24
25 Florian Vogel 30 Switzerland SUI 1-34:36 0:50 2 13:13 6 26:05 9 39:04 10 52:39 15 1-06:28 20 1-20:21 22
26 Catriel Soto 25 Argentina ARG 1-35:13 0:56 23 13:42 22 26:45 19 39:56 22 53:16 21 1-06:57 24 1-20:49 26
27 Kohei Yamamoto 28 Japan JPN 1-35:26 0:59 33 14:22 35 27:49 30 41:11 29 54:39 29 1-08:17 27 1-21:59 27
28 Héctor Páez 30 Colombia COL 1-36:02 1:00 38 14:21 34 27:51 31 41:16 31 54:56 30 1-08:36 28 1-22:16 28
29 Jean-Christophe Péraud 35 France FRA 1-37:07 0:58 31 15:02 45 28:25 39 42:03 36 55:35 34 1-09:14 30 1-23:19 30
30 Marc Bassingthwaighte 28 Namibia NAM 1-37:17 1:00 37 14:29 37 27:58 33 41:50 34 55:24 32 1-09:27 32 1-23:30 31
31 Serhiy Rysenko 32 Ukraine UKR 1-37:32 0:59 34 14:16 30 28:00 36 41:38 32 55:28 33 1-09:31 33 1-23:34 32
32 Piotr Brzózka 22 Poland POL 1-38:37 0:56 22 14:19 32 28:00 35 41:49 33 55:39 35 1-09:54 34 1-24:18 34
33 Periklis Ilias 26 Greece GRE 1-38:51 0:58 30 13:56 26 27:30 26 41:12 30 55:17 31 1-09:26 31 1-24:15 33
34 Moritz Milatz 30 Germany GER 1-38:59 0:54 11 14:57 43 27:54 32 40:57 27 54:19 27 1-08:39 29 1-22:56 29
35 Philip Buys 23 South Africa RSA 1-40:11 1:04 47 14:42 41 28:30 41 42:39 39 57:02 39 1-11:18 36 1-25:29 36
36 Paolo Montoya 27 Costa Rica CRC 1-41:19 1:00 39 14:33 38 28:25 38 42:30 38 56:38 37 1-11:22 37 1-25:56 37
37 Yevgeny Pechenin 28 Russia RUS 1-41:40 1:01 41 14:36 40 28:26 40 42:46 41 57:18 40 1-12:16 39 1-27:14 40
38 Chan Chun Hing 31 Hong Kong HKG 1-41:59 1:03 45 15:21 46 29:33 43 43:51 42 58:08 41 1-12:25 40 1-26:57 38
39 Adrien Niyonshuti 25 Rwanda RWA 1-42:46 1:03 46 14:36 39 28:08 37 42:22 37 56:41 38 1-11:33 38 1-27:02 39
40 Marios Athanasiadis 25 Cyprus CYP 1-43:25 0:59 35 14:44 42 28:33 42 42:40 40 56:37 36 1-10:55 35 1-25:25 35
41 Tong Weisong 24 China CHN 1:03 44 15:00 44 32:58 44 47:12 43 lapped
42 Derek Horton 39 Guam GUM 1:02 42 17:57 47 lapped
AC Sven Nys 36 Belgium BEL 0:55 15 13:31 17 27:58 34 40:54 26 54:20 28 DNF
AC Max Plaxton 27 Canada CAN 1:03 43 14:23 36 27:37 27 42:01 35 DNF
AC András Parti 29 Hungary HUN 0:59 36 14:21 33 27:42 29 DNF
AC Julien Absalon 31 France FRA 0:51 3 13:56 27 DNF
AC Liam Killeen 30 Great Britain GBR 0:58 28 13:46 24 DNF