It’s time for National Championships
Team BAHRAIN MERIDA athletes will compete in National Championships this weekend in Lithuania, Spain, Slovenia and Ukraine. Some of them will ride the Individual Time Trial too, that is scheduled on Friday 22nd, while the Road Race will take place on Sunday 24th.
Seven riders will line up at the Slovenian National Championships in Mirna Peč a small village close to Novo Mesto, featuring a challenging course with two demanding climbs (about 1.5km length) on a 12km circuit to repeat 15 times, 180km total. “We will be there like the team to beat” says Gorazd Štangelj, who will direct TBM guys on Sunday “When you ride a National Championships with so many athletes belonging to the same squad is an advantage for sure, but at the same time other riders can make alliances to run against us. Anyway, we can’t hide, we will be there to take a success. Both Bole (2nd) and Mohoric (3rd) achieved the podium last year. Now they are teammates and with the support of our other guys they will fight for the National title”.
In Spain the Izagirre brothers will compete both in Individual Time Trial and Road Race. On Friday 22nd in Vall d’Alba, Gorka and Ion – who was ITT National Champion in 2016 – will face an undulating 37.5km route, including two climbs: the ascent to Alto de Les Useres, 1km at almost 8% and Coll de la Basa (average gradient 6.4%). A course that suits them, as that of the Road Race on Sunday 24th in which they will be joined by Ivan Garcia Cortina as well: 215km from Castellon de la Plana to Benicassim, featuring a very challenging route with more than 3.000 meters total elevation. After hard and selective 100km, the three laps of a final circuit with the climb to the Desierto de las Palms, will decide the race.
Due to illness, Ramunas Navardauskas – winner of several National titles – couldn’t be at the start of the Lithuanian National Championships last year, as defending Road Race Champion. Now he will come back with great ambitions both in Individual Time Trial on Friday – on a 33km course in Endriejavas – and in the Road Race on Sunday – 182.4 km (10 laps x 18.24km) with start and finish in Kalniškė, near Gargždai.
The young Mark Padun – who was U23 ITT National Champion in 2016 – will try to fight for the National Champion jersey in the 220km Road Race in Bohuslav – Ukraine on Sunday.
Team BAHRAIN MERIDA riders at the National Championships
National Championships Lithuania
Ramunas Navardauskas (Individual Time Trial and Road Race)
National Championships Spain
Individual Time Trial: Ion Izagirre, Gorka Izagirre
Road Race: Ivan Garcia Cortina, Ion Izagirre, Gorka Izagirre
National Championships Slovenia
Road Race: Grega Bole, Borut Bozic, Kristijan Koren, Matej Mohoric, Domen Novak, David Per, Luka Pibernik,
National Championships Ukraine
Road Race: Mark Padun