Olympic and world champion Nino Schurter triumphed in the Czech Republic ©Getty Images

World champion Nino Schurter claimed victory in the men's elite race as the International Cycling Union (UCI) Mountain Bike World Cup cross-country event drew to a close in Nové Město na Moravě.

The Swiss star had already enjoyed multiple successes at the Czech venue, with three previous World Cup wins and his World Championships triumph last year.

Schurter headed to the front of the race from the early stages, eager to replicate the achievement of fellow world champion, Annika Langvad of Denmark, who won the women's race yesterday.

He was able to distance the majority of the field, but Spain's David Valero Serrano would prove resilient.

Serrano stayed with the world champion for much of the race and opted to set the pace, but Schurter would accelerate away from his rival in the closing stages to go clear.

The Swiss rider would triumph in a time of one hour, 27min and 35sec, with Serrano ending 26 seconds adrift.

The podium was completed by France's Julien Absalon, with the two-time Olympic champion finishing in a time of 1:29:21.

"I was not nervous, I went absolutely relaxed into the race after my victory last year," said Schurter, the reigning Olympic champion.

"I felt just great, this course suits me perfectly.

"David surprised me, he started to chase me, I waited for him and he set lovely pace that suited me absolutely.

"He tried to break away a few times, but I was strong enough to keep up with him.

"Then it was my turn to attack in the fourth lap, well, and it worked."

The women's under-23 race was won by the United States' Kate Courtney, as she finished in a time of 1:12:45.

Britain's Evie Richards recovered from a crash to take the silver medal in 1:14:35, with Switzerland's Sina Frei finishing 3:26 behind the winner to secure bronze.