The 11 th Genghis Khan MTB Adventure started wth half an hour delay as torrential rain had flooded the streets of Xiwuqi. Eventually, the start of stage 1 was dry but it did not take long before rain began to fall again on the field of brave participants.
In brief, this was the toughest stage in the history of the Genghis Khan MTB and several participants failed to make the cut off of 5 hours for the 68 km race – even when that cut off time had already been extended by half an hour. Conditions on the grassland trails were extremely treacherous and muddy for the first half of the race. Luckily, the rain stopped for the second half of the race, but for many people the damage had already been done. Up front, there were attacks and seven people got away on Nadamu Hill. Erdenesuren Munkhtulga and Shi Yongming were the most industrious and confident to ride away for some time as a duo. But come km 25, others returned, among which Myagmarsuren Baasaankhuu – winner in 2014 – , Feng Kuan Jie – three times podium but never a winner in Xiwuqi – and Luo Danzhi. Also Germany’s Peter Wolkowicz was still among them at that point. As another difficult and slippery section presented itself, a quartet containing Miga, Feng Kuan Jie, Munkhtulga and Shi Yongming managed to get away from the rest. A bit later, Munkhtulga had to let go also. Meanwhile, China’s Shi Yongming attacked again and developed a lead by himself. But a big slide at km 54 reduced his advantage and Miga and Feng Kuan Jie came back.
The trio would stay together until the finish line in Xiwuqi and in the sprint it was Feng Kuan Jie who had the better of Miga and Shi Yongming. A fantastic victory for the Chinese rider after so many years of absence….and who knows, maybe he can finally win the Genghis Khan Festival this year! Erdenesuren Munkhtulga was fourth five minutes later.
Chen Jiadong was first of the King of the Grassland competitors, those who will also run the full Grassland Marathon tomorrow morning. The Beijinger has a 12-minute advantage over Peter Wolkowicz and Zhang Haobo.
The women’s race was won by Qin Ziye, who had a gap of more than five minutes over Solongo Tserenlham and 21 minutes over Wu Yingying. Interestingly, Qin Ziye is also doing the KOG… so it’s a double win for her! Second of the KOG competitors was Huang Haiyu, 45 minutes behind.