After a few years of absence, CHALLENGEFAMILY returns to Poland this weekend: LOTTOCHALLENGEGDANSK is on the program. This race will undoubtedly be exciting, given the strong field of pro athletes in both the men and women’s race.
In the men’s race, most eyes will likely be on Pablo Gonzalez Dapena. The Spaniard participated in several CHALLENGEFAMILY races in recent months, regularly finishing high and performed well, but has not yet managed to win a race this season. He will definitely want to change that in Gdansk. It won’t be easy though, because he will be up against Matt Trautman, among others. The South African is perhaps more specialized in the Long Distance – for example he won CHALLENGEALMERE-AMSTERDAM in 2019 with a race record of 7:50:15hr – but can also do well on the Middle Distance.
Furthermore, much can be expected from the British Thomas Davis, German Marcus Herbst and German Franz Loeschke. Cyril Viennot (FR), Alessandro Degasperi (IT) and Evert Scheltinga (NL) are very dangerous outsiders.
Among the women, the biggest battle seems to be between four world class athletes: Emma Pallant, Judith Corachan, Lisa Norden and Sarissa de Vries. On paper, Dutchwoman De Vries is perhaps the biggest favorite: a few weeks ago she won CHALLENGERICCIONE, then she took a break to be as good as possible at the start in Gdansk. Women like the British Pallant, Spanish Corachan and Swedish Norden are actually always good and are always among the favorites in a race.
In addition, Germany’s Carolin Lehrieder and Margie Santimaria are also at the start. The German and Italian athletes are also always strong and very formidable athletes to keep a close eye on. Local favorite Ewa Komander could, no doubt supported by the home crowd, also provide some nice surprises.