i decided to stay in europe after the world cups to race in the stairs of prague race coming up this week.as it was near the last world cup cherise and i made the trip to granishen in switzerland aswell.ive always heard great things about the swiss cup so i was excited to give one a go.

we stayed in a town called aarau and wow the riding around there was incredible.after a few days of cold and wet conditions the skies cleared up and our stay became even more comfortable.

the course in granichen was harder than i expected.definitely on a much higher level than our national cup series back home.it was 4.5km long with 170m altitude gain per lap.we had 9 laps on the cards so that meant alot of steep climbing and alot of good tecnical descending mostly characterized by tight turns,drops and roots.

we kicked off at 2pm on sunday and i got of to a great start,heading into the single trail first at the top of a long pavement climb.soon we were four riders at the front,florian vogel(scott),balz webber(bmc),mathias stirneman(thomus).i was happy to try and lead all the dh sections and vogel paced alot on the climbs with me.at the end of the second lap we dropped balz but i had a small problem with my saddle coming loose.it kept moving forwards and backwards.at the end of the second lap i stopped to tighten it somewhat in the tech zone.i dropped 30sec behind and had a hard chase for three laps which included a tumble whilst taking some risks on the descents.i got back with less than three laps to go and vogel started testing us on the steep ascents in his home town race.mathias cracked first while i held on alittle longer.with a lap and a half to go i couldnt follow florians pace and settled in to my own rythm.on the last lap i closed back up to him and started the last half lap just 8 sec down,before having more trouble with the seat sliding the whole way back.i settled for 2nd and was happy with another solid result in europe.thanks to all the organisers and fans of the swiss cup who were so helpfull over the weekend.

on monday cherise and i drove 750km to prague and upon arrival walked around for about 4hours.a realy interesting city on which ill elaborate more later.im realy looking forward to the stairs race on wednesday before flying home to do the sardine classic back home on sunday!

till next week...