Sandra Santanyes and Jeroen van Eck took their first WES victory at the Sea Otter Round
Monaco (P.ty) Friday 24 September 2021 – WES opening day at the Costa Brava- Girona Sea Otter Europe saw some thrilling finish in both the Women’s and the Men’s race.
Jérôme Gilloux (Moustache) started first on the grid after the morning’s Qualirace, while Joris Ryf (Bergstrom) took the lead at the start and scored the Holeshot. Getting into the first corner, the Swiss fairly changed his line and got into the Frenchman way. The manoeuvre ended up in a contact between the standings leader’s foot and Jeroen van Eck’s (American Eagle) bike. The “Flying Dutchman” pushed hard and didn’t give up until the very end of the race, with a sprint on the final straight, getting his first win in the season. A disappointed Gilloux eventually finished second, ahead of country fellow Théo Charmes (Cube) and maintained the standings lead ahead of Ryf by 17 points, slightly extending the gap.
Among the national wildcards, several worldwide-known names such as the Olympians Jofre Cullell (Mondraker) and Carlos Coloma (BH), finishing 9th and 10th, respectively and both excited at their debut in the series.
14 riders between Men and Women competed under the Spanish flag on Day 1.
In the Women’s field, Olympian Malene Degn (Orbea) from Denmark, at her first appearance in the E-MTB World Cup qualified in first place, took the Holeshot 05” ahead of local rider Sandra Santanyes (Trek) and the lead until the last lap. Santanyes, member of the Catalan Federation squad, managed to reduce the gap lap after lap and eventually won the race in an incredible sprint, in front of her home crowd.
Josefina Casadey (Canyon) from Argentina also debuted at the Sea Otter Round and stepped onto the third place of the podium ahead of Ares Masip (Orbea).
Tomorrow’s schedule will see Qualirace 2 starting at h12:00 and Race 2 at h16:00.