Victor Koretzky wins the short-track sprint in the Les Gets World Cup round. Koretzky is posting up, his arms in the air, as Jordan Sarrou throws his bike forward and looks across to see who was first.

Race report: Pieterse and Koretzky take Les Gets XCC

The Dutch racer notched her first World Cup short-track win, while Koretzky ended a two-year win drought.

Ryan Simonovich
by Ryan Simonovich 08.09.2023 Photography by
Piper Albrecht
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The UCI Mountain Bike World Cup is in Les Gets, France this week for the series’ final European stop before finishing the season in North America. Puck Pieterse and Victor Koretzky took wins on the XCC race on the same short track circuit that hosted the World Championships last season. 

Martina Berta was fast off the line at the start of the women’s race, but Loana Lecomte was first to the top of the first hill with Chiara Teocchi, Alessandra Keller, Evie Richards, and Pieterse all in the mix. Reigning world champion Pauline Ferrand-Prevot is not racing at Les Gets.

As the front group began to establish itself, Pieterse pushed the pace, with Keller, Berta, Richards, Lecomte, and Jenny Rissveds all making the front split. Berta began dangling off the back of that group and eventually got dropped. 

Haley Batten, who missed a chunk of the season due to a head injury, used excellent racecraft to move herself up into the lead group midway through the race in her first World Cup race since June.  

On the penultimate lap, Lecomte was leading through a grassy switchback turn when Keller’s rear tire slipped out, causing the rest of the group to stall. Lecomte didn’t gain much of an advantage though, as Pieterse had enough time to catch up and launch a final lap attack. 

Pieterse stayed in front to take her inaugural World Cup XCC victory after several podium finishes, and Richards and Keller rolled in for second and third respectively. 

Puck Pieterse crosses the finish line of the women's XCC at Les Gets.

Luca Schwarzbauer led out the men’s race and was joined by Pierre de Froidmont, Alan Hatherly, Anton Cooper, Jordan Sarrou, and Joshua Dubau. Fresh name David Campos Motos also had a fast start and got some TV time. 

While the women’s race saw decisive splits and small-group racing, the men’s contest stayed together in a long, strung-out line of racers for the majority of the race. Victor Koretzky moved himself into the top five midway through the race and began taking pulls. 

Schwarzbauer stayed near the front and led the penultimate lap, but Koretzky came from behind as the racers crossed under the finish gantry for a last-lap flier in front of the French crowd. Sarrou was the strongest rider to go with Koretzky and Thomas Litscher followed closely behind. Koretsky stayed in the lead and outsprinted a surging Sarrou to take his first World Cup victory in two years. 

Elite Women XCC Results 

  1. Puck Pieterse (Alpecin-Deceuninck)
  2. Evie Richards (Trek Factory Racing) 
  3. Alessandra Keller (Thömus maxon) 
  4. Haley Batten (Specialized Factory Racing) 
  5. Loana Lecomte (Canyon CLLCTV) 
  6. Mona Mitterwallner (Cannondale Factory Racing) 
  7. Anne Terpstra (Ghost Factory Racing) 
  8. Gwendalyn Gibson (Trek Factory Racing) 
  9. Nicole Koller (Ghost Factory Racing) 
  10. Martina Berta (Santa Cruz Rockshox) 

Elite Men XCC Results 

  1. Victor Koretzky (Specialized Factory Racing) 
  2. Jordan Sarrou (Team BMC)
  3. Luca Schwarzbauer (Canyon CLLCTV)
  4. Jens Schuermans (Giant Factory Off-Road Team) 
  5. Martins Blums (KMC MTB Racing Team) 
  6. Joshua Dubau (Rockrider Ford) 
  7. Thomas Litscher (Lapierre Mavic Unity) 
  8. Christopher Blevins (Specialized Factory Racing) 
  9. Lars Forster (Thömus maxon) 
  10. Vital Alban (Thömus maxon) 

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