The runners were welcomed by the sun after the snow for the second stage of the Pierra Menta 2023. This stage included 2610 meters of positive elevation and more than 25 km in the Col de la Forclaz region.
While the competition remains uncertain in the men’s category, the French Axelle Mollaret and Émily Harrop have largely dominated the women’s category.
Pierra Menta 2023 D2 – Axelle Gachet-Mollaret & Émily Harrop in the lead
After impressing during the first stage, the exceptional women of the Pierra Menta have confirmed their reputation by taking first place again in this second stage.
The French duo does not seem worried at all. After winning the first stage with more than 11 minutes of advantage, the two Frenchwomen widened the gap during the second long stage and took a 16-minute lead over their compatriots Candice and Léna Bonnel, who were chasing them.
The two Frenchwomen, both recent world team champions, should be able to manage the end of the race and win the victory by the end of the week unless there is a major incident (they now have an advantage of nearly 27 minutes). The Italians Martina Valmassoi and Elena Nicolini currently complete the podium.
The Arêches duo, who won this second stage, were closely followed by the Italians.
The runners took off for the second stage of the Pierra Menta under the sun of Beaufortain at 8:00, to the traditional sound of bells, before facing each other.
The Italians Nadir Maguet and Matteo Eydallin, who were in the lead the day before, were dethroned today by the locals William Bon Mardion and Xavier Gachet, who crossed the finish line in 2h37’40”, thus winning the first place on the podium. Very efficient in the descent, Gachet and Bon Mardion were able to make use of their experience and gradually widen the gap with their pursuers.
After a disastrous first day due to major hardware problems while they were in the lead of the race, the two Arêchois, Xavier Gachet and William Bon Mardion, managed to come back to the forefront during this second stage, after a fierce struggle with the Italian team Boscacci/Magnini.
A magnificent performance for the two members of the Arêches-Beaufort club, who fought throughout this stage and managed to climb 3 places in the ranking. William Bon Mardion, already a winner in 2013, lines up for the second time alongside Xavier Gachet. Their goal is clear: to win the 37th edition of the Pierra Menta!
Thanks to this victory, they managed to move from 5th place in the provisional general ranking to 3rd place (3’04 from the head of the race), now preceded by another French team, Mathéo Jacquemoud and Samuel Equy (3rd on both stages and 2’24 from the head of the race), as well as the Italian team, Michele Boscacci and Davide Magnini, who were at the top of the general ranking after finishing 2nd on Wednesday and Thursday.
Pierra Menta 2023 D2 – Results of the Day
- Xavier Gachet – & William Bon Mardion – 2:37:40
- Michele Boscacci & Davide Magnigni – 2:37:42
- Samuel Équy & Mathéo Jacquemoud – 2:39:42
- Jakob Herrmann & Martin Anthamatten – 2:40:36
- Nadir Maguet & Matteo Eydallin – 2:41:45
- William Boffelli & Alex Oberbacher – 2:50:16
- (FR) Aurélien Dunand Pallaz & Julien Michelon – 2:51:01
- Alexis Sevennec & Anselme Damevin – 2:51:57
- Germain Grangier & Valentin Clarys – 2:52:03
- Petter Engdahl & Jonathan Albon – 2:54:13
- Axelle Mollaret & Émily Harrop – 3:04:42
- Candine Bonnel & Léna Bonnel – 3:20:32
- Martina Valmassoi & Elena Nicolini – 3:32:21
- Kylee Ohler and Rea Kolbl – 3:38:42
- Anna Tybor & Élise Poncet – 3:50:07
- Laurie Renoton & Périne Gindre – 4:07:47
- Marie Charlotte Iratzoquy & Grace Staberg – 4:15:16
- Romane Lafarge & Sophie Mollard – 4:16:33
- Katrin Bieler & Mélanie Rousset – 4:20:28
- Jacqueline Brandl and Bianca Somavilla – 4:21:29