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Wade Young won Xross Challenge 2018

Wade Young winner of Xross Challenge / Photo by Attila Szabo

18/06/2018

Xross Challenge has a new champion and it is Wade Young from South Africa, one of the best hard enduro riders in the world. The three-day event will be remembered as the hardest race by far, and weather conditions forced not only the riders, but the organizers as well to push their limits. The biggest impression is the persistence of riders who despite hard conditions were determined to overcome all obstacles, showing once again true hard enduro spirit.

Xross Challenge / Photo by Predrag Vučković

Photo by Predrag Vučković

The fifth edition of the biggest and toughest hard enduro race in Serbia was marked by the rain that was falling constantly for two days. More than 130 riders from 12 countries have participated in the race, competing in three categories – Pro, Expert and Hobby. The race started with Prologue that was held in Bajina Bašta for the first time. The rain was a motivation for some riders, but to others, it was a huge problem because they were stuck between obstacle. You can read more about that here.

Photo by Predrag Vučković

On the second day of the race, merciless Tara mountain has tested the physical and mental strength of the riders to the limits. The race was so hard that even Wade Young told us it reminded him of Red Bull Romaniacs. Bikes were falling down the slippery uphills, went out of control, mud was flying everywhere, and riders used their last atoms of strength to overcome the obstacles. More about that you can read here.

Bad weather conditions have forced the organizers to change the track on the last race day because of overflown creeks and rivers. Even though rain followed the riders on the start of the race, during the day the sunshine showed up in the sky which had effect on the atmosphere amongst riders, so even they were muddy, wet and pretty tiered they were coming to the finish lines with smiles on their faces because they managed to overcome one more challenge.

Xross Challenge 2018 / Photo by Alex Dmitrović

Photo by Alex Dmitrović

The fastest rider during all three days was Wade Young. Rain and mud were a problem for him as well, but they didn’t stop him to be the first on the finish line.

I am very happy because I won my first time at Xross Challenge. It was a great race, the rain made it difficult, I had trouble on the second day. Organization of the race was great, tracks are really good, very well marked, I hope I will come back next year – said Young.

Croatian rider Matija Zec ended up second while Slovenian rider Miha Spindler was third in PRO Class, same as last year.

The race was really good all three days, organization was really good. Last day was the easiest for me. I wanted to make better result than last year, but first two days I didn’t have a GPS and I got lost couple of times in the woods, so I lost a lot of time there. On the third day, I didn’t need GPS. The race was harder than last year, it was brutally hard, but it is on big and tough races like this that you learn something new – said Zec.

PRO Class winners at Xross Challenge 2018 / Photo Bogdan Kosanović

Photo Bogdan Kosanović

Before the race, Spindler told us that at Xross Challenge he feels like he is at home, this was his fourth time at this race and for the fourth time, he found himself on the podium.

I am satisfied, I had much bigger competition this year so it was really hard, but I gave my best and here I am on the podium, it means a lot to me. I will remember this race as one in which I fought a lot with myself because I knew I had tough opponents. The track was much more difficult than in previous years, and because of the weather even the organizers had to deal with a lot of things than usual, but they managed to make it all good, they did a good job – said Spindler.

XROSS CHALLENGE 2018 RESULTS

PRO Class

  1. Wade Young
  2. Matija Zec
  3. Miha Spindler

EXPERT Class

  1. Marko Petelin
  2. Mirjan Rabar
  3. Dino Floricic

HOBBY Class

  1. Severin Sajevec
  2. Zoran Ivanovic
  3. Matic Kokot

VETERANS

  1. Matevz Kovac
  2. Nedeljko Matovic
  3. Samir Nesimovic

LADIES

  1. Agnieszka Smolinska
  2. Minja Cvetanovic