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Christopher Blevins Wins XC World Cup on Home Soil

Blevins became the first American man to win a World Cup since 1994 with his historic victory in West Virginia

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America’s Christopher Blevins won the final cross country World Cup race of the season in Snowshoe, West Virginia, on Sunday, becoming the first American man to bring home a World Cup win since 1994 when Tinker Juarez won in Silver Star, British Columbia. Blevins’ win on home soil caps a breakout elite season for the 23-year-old, in which he became the short track world champion—the first American man to win the rainbow stripes in 30 years—and raced in the Tokyo Olympics.

Blevins raced patiently, and never led. Instead dodged the wind, conserved his energy and strategically made his move in the final lap. (Photo: Bartek Wolinkski/Red Bull Content Pool)

Blevins, who races for Specialized on the Trinity Racing team, had a strong start off the line and settled into the small lead group, where he stayed the entire race, as big-hitters Nino Schurter, Ondrej Cink and Henrique Avinci traded turns at the front. Mattias Flueckinger, who secured the World Cup overall title two days before at the short track, flatted in the first lap and fell behind. Another top contender, Victor Koretzky, who won Friday’s short track race, also flatted and dropped out of the lead group.

Blevins on his way to a history-making win. (Photo: Bartek Wolinksi/Red Bull Content Pool)

Blevins seemingly sat comfortably in third, fourth or fifth for most of the race, responding to the occasional attack, but racing fairly conservatively, patiently and very composed. In one of the final climbs of the last lap, Blevins, tapping into his short-track prowess, moved into second, then passed leader Schurter in burst of power around a corner on singletrack and dropped the rest of the field in dramatic fashion.

“I was waiting the whole race for that moment,” Blevins said at the finish line. “There was lot of pent up energy from the fans I took every lap, and when I attacked, I really went all the way in.”

Schurter flatted after Blevins overtook him, and ended in fourth place. A first-place for Schurter would’ve finally allowed him to edge out Julien Absalon for the most number of World Cup wins, a record he’s been chasing since 2019.