In the 2017 European Tour, our Elite women raced more than the elite men through the season and brought us lot of action, excitement and great moments.
Like with the men, we took some time to chat with some of them and bring you all the latest information from their preparation and plans for the upcoming season.
Helena Karaskova-Herbenova (CZE)
The battle between Brigitta and Helena was really strong all the way. With our rule “all race count” it was a matter of points collection. The choice of Poor to race and win the ETU Cross Triathlon Championship cause the loss of critical points and gave the title to Helena Karaskova-Erbenova from Czech Republic. “This year I will follow the Euro Tour but will not be focused on collecting points. Last year Brigitta was stronger but at the end, the points system put me on top. I want to have more fun this year. Maybe I will try something new, I am working with my Czech mtb trainer and my swim coach, not sure of my final approach. ” said Karaskova.
“Helena was second at the ITU Winter Triathlon World Championship in 2018. She won this race in the past, she is an Olympian in Cross Country Skiing, she won some of the biggest Adventure races in China with Thule team in 2017, so I can’t wait to see what will be her next challenge” said Lebrun, XTERRA European Tour Director.
“XTERRA Belgium was my best experience last year. The place is amazing the atmosphere is great, there is such a spirit in the air. Can’t wait to be back in Namur.” said Karaskova.
We know she will be in Malta for the first race of the season, Brigitta will be there too, so the big fight for the women will start very early. After Malta Helena will go to Greece, Italy-Lake Garda, Belgium, France, Germany, Denmark, Spain and of course at home, at XTERRA Czech in Prachatice, who is back in the European Tour for 2018.
“With her race schedule and knowing her potential, she will be for sure in the top 3 ranking for this year. Can’t wait to see her performance in Malta on April 15th” said Lebrun.
Brigitta Poor (HUN)
Our Hungarian elite, Brigitta Poor will be in Malta to defend her title. She will then participate in many other races including Cyprus, Greece, Portugal, Switzerland, France, Romania, Poland, Denmark and Spain. Her main goal will be the XTERRA European Championship in Zittau, Germany. She won this race in 2017 with a great performance and she took the title in the European Championship in Denmark at the end of the season.
“Every race, every organization and every place have its own specialties. Maybe the European Championship in Denmark was my favorite. This location is amazing and I loved the “elite race” on Saturday before the age group race on Sunday. For the first time the Age Groupers were there to cheer for us and we were able to see them racing the next day. I was really tired at the end of the season and I hardly believe that I won this race” said Poor.
“She wants to be the queen of Europe for second year in a row and she will fight hard for it. Like Helena she doesn’t want to put any pressure on her fighting for the Tour points, but with 11 races on her schedule she will still be among the favorites for the title. She made a big step in her performance last year and she proved she is in a position to win big events. This year she is starting the season with a 4th place in Maui under her belt, she is confident and had a very good winter training. She is here to win more and this will put a lot of pressure in her competitors” said Lebrun
Carina Wasle (AUS)
Carina Wasle, one of our most experienced elites from Austria, was 3rd last year in the Euro Tour. She is traveling all over the world for XTERRA racing and won few races last year in the Asia-Pacific tour.
This year, despite the fact that she had a small bike crash few weeks before the race, she started the season with an impressive win at XTERRA South Africa. “Of course I will race in Europe again this season. I will be for sure at the start line of XTERRA Belgium, France, Germany, Poland, and Switzerland. I’ll decide later which races I’ll add on my schedule. I don’t have any specific goal for this year. I am working hard to get more power on the bike at this time. It’s nice to push and fight with the other girls, enjoy the race, the country, the atmosphere. I will try to keep up with them and hopefully win some races. One of my favorites race is XTERRA Belgium. I love the swim around the small island in the river. The atmosphere during the hard bike and run course around the citadel is superb. And yes they have a great after race party” said Carina.
“She is fighter. She did a lot of X-country skiing and ski mountaineering is Austria during the winter to build a strong base. I am sure she will be many times on the podium this year and might be able to win some. She is a great ambassador of the XTERRA Family spirit. Training hard, racing hard, respect every other competitor and enjoy a drink with them after the race ” said Lebrun.
Morgane Riou (FRA)
Morgane Riou from France will be back in Europe, planning to race around 12 events this year. She was third last year in the Pan-American Tour, enjoying some nice trips, using XTERRA as an excuse to visit many countries. She won her first XTERRA in Dominican Republic and improved a lot her performance in all three disciplines of our sport the last 3 years.
“I did some cyclocross races this winter during my preparation and I loved it. I also did a winter camp with lots of cross country skiing with Organicoach and some athletes of the new XTERRA Racing Team. Working full time in a big city like Paris it will be hard for me to compete against the full time elite athletes. I don’t make a living out of races so I am more relaxed. Racing is my passion” said Riou.
“She will start the season in Malta, hopefully with a new bike as her 5 years old 14kg one, did its time. She started her winter training with no injury, so already way better than last year as she is able to run from the start of the preparation. Would love to see her making her first win in Europe this season” said Lebrun.
Stay tuned for the second part of our elite women with Laura Philip from France, Michel Flipo and Nicole Walters who is no rooky anymore!