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Cyclo-cross News & Racing Round-up, Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Date published:
January 12, 2011, 0:00 GMT
  • Boom to defend Dutch cyclo-cross title

    Dutch champion Lars Boom (Rabobank) powers through the mud.
    Article published:
    January 04, 2011, 22:23 GMT
    Cycling News

    Participation confirmed despite crash in Baal

    Lars Boom announced today that he will compete in the Dutch National Cyclo-cross Championships in Sint Michielsgestel this weekend. The 25-year-old has sufficiently recovered from bruises sustained in a crash at the GP Sven Nys in Baal, Belgium on January 1.

    Boom was leading the race when he crashed on a muddy descent, severely bruising his lower back, necessitating several days of complete rest.

    Boom is hoping to continue his winning streak in the championship event. He has won the past four elite titles and prior to joining the elite ranks he held three U23 and three junior titles. Along with his 2008 road race and time trial championship wins, Boom could net his 13th career national title this weekend and have the longest undefeated streak in the cyclo-cross championships.

    The national championship race is one of the few cyclo-cross races in which Boom will compete this season as he focuses on his road career with the Rabobank team.

  • Compton to lead US charge at 'cross Worlds

    Katie Compton (Planet Bike) takes the win in Zolder.
    Article published:
    January 07, 2011, 21:30 GMT
    Cycling News

    USA Cycling names cyclo-cross world championship team

    USA Cycling announced today its nominations for the elite women, under-23 men and junior men's fields for the UCI Cyclo-Cross World Championships in St. Wendel, Germany.

    Seven-time US national champion Katie Compton (Planet Bike) earned an automatic nomination thanks to her four World Cup wins this season, and as the UCI's number-one ranked rider and World Cup leader, she is a top contender for the rainbow jersey.

    Joining Compton on the start line on January 30 will be Sue Butler of Portland, Oregon, an automatic nominee based on a 14th-place at the Plzen, Czech Republic World Cup, as well as discretionary nominees Meredith Miller (Cal Giant/Specialized), Amy Dombroski and Kaitlin Antonneau (Cannondale/

    Two U23 men earned automatic nominations: Daniel Summerhill (Garmin-Transitions-Team Holowesko Partners) and Zach McDonald (Rapha-Focus), who claimed the top two spots at the US championships.

    Also earning a place on the U23 men's Worlds team is Jerome Townsend ('s Garage/Scott), Cody Kaiser (Cal Giant-Specialized) and Luke Keough (Champion System).

    Jeff Bahnson (Van Dessel Factory Team), the junior national champion, will line up as the sole automatic nominee in his field, while Bjorn Fox (Clif Bar Development) and Andrew Dillman (Prochain Cycling) were discretionary picks.

    The elite men's team will be decided on Friday, January 14.

    Team USA for the 2011 UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships

    Elite Women

    Katie Compton (Planet Bike-Stevens Bikes)
    Susan Butler
    Meredith Miller (Cal Giant/Specialized)
    Amy Dombroski
    Kaitlin Antonneau (Cannondale/

    U23 Men

    Daniel Summerhill (Garmin-Transitions-Team Holowesko Partners)
    Zach McDonald (Rapha Focus)
    Jerome Townsend ('s Garage/Scott)
    Cody Kaiser (Cal Giant-Specialized)

  • Cyclo-cross World Cup may visit Czech twice next season

    Zdenek Stybar (Telenet-Fidea) leads the race
    Article published:
    January 08, 2011, 16:35 GMT
    Brecht Decaluwé

    Czech applies to host multiple rounds in 2011-12

    The Czech national cycling federation is keen to hold two cyclo-cross World Cup races during the 2011-2012 season, and the International Cycling Union (UCI) has said it will consider both applications.

    Up through this cyclo-cross season, the Czech Republic has always organized one World Cup race. This season, the Czech round was in Plzen. Tabor, host of the 2010 cyclo-cross world championships and regular organizer of a World Cup round in the past, is a second candidate.

    "The Czech cycling federation will propose to hold World Cup races in Tabor and Plzen. Both cities are capable of organizing top cyclo-cross events. Tabor has been acknowledged as one of the best ever World Cup organizers. If the UCI agrees, it will be a historical achievement for the Czech Republic," said Cestmír Kalaš, president of the Czech's cyclo-cross commission.

    Next Tuesday, the UCI off-road commission will discuss this matter when it is putting together the 2011-2012 cyclo-cross calendar. Peter Van den Abeele, head of the UCI's off-road commission, welcomed the Czech proposal. "Sending several proposals is not forbidden. It's always good to notice that the sport is growing in a country. The Czech Republic also has the current world champion in the elite men's category."

    "In the past, we received only one proposal from the Czech cycling federation, but this year, there were two files. It's not an uncommon thing to do as The Netherlands and France have organized two World Cup rounds in the past, too, while Belgium is currently hosting three World Cup rounds," Van den Abeele told Cyclingnews.

    In some countries, the organization of one single World...

  • Pineau primed for French 'cross championships

    Stage winner Jerome Pineau (Quick Step) is a happy man.
    Article published:
    January 08, 2011, 19:56 GMT
    Barry Ryan

    Quick Step rider taking part for

    Jerome Pineau (Quick Step) will take part in Sunday’s French cyclo-cross championships at Lanarvily in Brittany as he steps up his preparations for the 2011 season.

    The Frenchman said he harbours no ambitions of taking home a tricolour jersey but is taking part simply because of his passion for the discipline. Cyclo-cross forms an important part of Pineau’s off-season regimen, and he is looking forward to showcasing his off road skills in public again after riding in last year’s championships.

    “Clearly I’ll not be at the same levels as the best athletes in this specialty but, nonetheless, I will certainly be giving my very all,” Pineau said. “I also took part in the national championships last year and it was a fantastic experience.

    “I love cyclo-cross. It is really enjoyable and a great way to train and keep yourself in shape during the winter and as preparation for road racing."

    Pineau was given dispensation from his team to miss the first day of the team’s training camp in Calpe in order to compete in Lanarvily, but after the race, he will fly to Spain to link up with his Quick Step teammates.

    “I’d like to thank the team for giving me the opportunity to take part in the national cyclo-cross championships,” Pineau said.

    After the Quick Step team presentation is Kortrijk on January 21, Pineau will leave for Africa to take part in his first road race of the year at the Tour of Gabon.

  • Albert rates Belgian's champion jersey on par with world title

    Niels Albert (BKCP – Powerplus) crosses the line to win the Belgian title.
    Article published:
    January 09, 2011, 20:40 GMT
    Brecht Decaluwé

    Belgian building for big finish to season

    Niels Albert’s (BKCP-Powerplus) win in the Belgian cyclo-cross championships didn't come as a surprise. Albert was top favourite for the title together with defending champion Sven Nys (Landbouwkrediet).

    “My season is already a success. I'm curious to find out how this tricolour jersey is going to fit me. I always wanted to ride a year in this jersey and now it has finally came true,” Albert said.

    After the race, Albert declared he rated the title of Belgian champion almost as high as his world championship title from 2009 in Hoogerheide, The Netherlands. There is a distinct logic to what he says, considering that six Belgian riders currently feature in the top 10 of the UCI rankings. The Belgian national championships are sometimes also referred to as the mini-world championships.

    “After my career, I aim to have won everything at least once. It's not easy to become Belgian national champion. You've got to remain realistic and cherish whatever you get,” Albert said.

    Right after the race, the 24-year-old was worried about the possible lack of opportunities to wear the tricolor jersey. “Tomorrow in Otegem I can wear the jersey but during the next two World Cup rounds I have to wear the jersey of leader in the World Cup. Then there's the world championships and I have already captured that title in the past, but of course I'll go for it if I'm in a position to win the world championships (again). It's a bonus because figuratively speaking, I was a nitwit at the start of the season,” Albert said.

    Last year as world champion Albert had a great first half of the season but he eventually lost out on all the prizes at the end of the season. “Last year was good but the world champion's jersey is a hard load to carry. You always want to show it, but during the weeks around Christmas I wasn't living for my sport as I should have. Probably decompression was the reason for that. The guy...

  • Flu ruins day for defending Belgian 'cross champ Nys

    Article published:
    January 09, 2011, 21:47 GMT
    Brecht Decaluwé

    Off-day at the Belgian championships

    Going into the Belgian cyclo-cross championships Sven Nys (Landbouwkrediet) was one of the two favourites - together with Niels Albert (BKCP-Powerplus) to sport the tricolore jersey for the next 365 days. The Belgian media was getting ready for a great duel between the two citizens of Baal. It was to be a fight between the new and old generation, as the two men from Baal differ in age by 10 years.

    When the race got underway, Nys was consistently riding in the top three, while Albert had a poor start and had to work his way back up from about 10th position. While Albert was moving up Nys got stuck in third place, and Albert sneaked past Nys and powered through the sand towards sole leader Kevin Pauwels (Telenet-Fidea).

    One lap later, Nys still hadn't bridged up towards the front, and to the surprise of many, he even started to lose ground. Albert dominated the race while Nys rode anonymously around eighth position. The defending Belgian champion didn't bother to finish the last lap and headed for his camper. Cyclingnews was one of the privileged media to enter the camper and listen to the dethroned Belgian champion.

    The atmosphere in the Nys camp was deceptive as its leader wasn't able to put up a fight against eventual winner Albert. While sitting there, Sven's wife Isabelle Nijs tried to keep their dog Trouble away from the people' feet.

    "After 300 metres I knew it wasn't going to happen today. During the first lap, the pace wasn't high in front, but I felt that I couldn't go any faster. I didn't have the feeling that I was suffering," said Nys.

    "Every time I exited the sand section, I was aching for air. I had that feeling before, but often it gets better during the race. It's something I haven't felt during the last few months. Already during course reconnaissance, I didn't feel great. It's weird because I'm not feeling ill. But just like you, I'm looking for reasons."

    "Sometimes sport is easy, sometimes...

  • Dutch federation names cyclo-cross team for worlds

    World champion Marianne Vos (Nederland Bloeit)
    Article published:
    January 10, 2011, 20:54 GMT
    Cycling News

    Vos to defend in St. Wendel

    The Dutch cycling federation (KNWU) named a 19-rider roster for the upcoming UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships today. Defending world champion Marianne Vos will return to seek her fourth title after claiming the Dutch national championship for the first time in her career.

    Lars Boom, winner of the elite men's Dutch title, will not compete at the world championship in St. Wendel, Germany at the end of the month. Focused on his road career with Rabobank, he planned only to race a few 'cross events this season. Instead, the elite men will be led by runner-up Gerben De Knegt. Thijs Van Amerongen and Eddy van IJzendoorn will join De Knegt on the line.

    Netherlands team for UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships:

    Juniors: Danny van Poppel, Douwe Verberne, Jaap de Man, Stan Godrie, Twan Brusselman

    U23 Men: Lars van der Haar, Mike Teunissen, Gert-Jan Bosman, Tijmen Eising, Micki van Empel

    Elite Men: Gerben de Knegt, Thijs van Amerongen, Eddy van IJzendoorn

    Elite Women: Marianne Vos, Daphny van den Brand, Sophie de Boer, Sanne van Paassen, Linda van Rijen, Arenda Grimberg

  • British announce World Cyclo-Cross team

    Helen Wyman concentrates on the course
    Article published:
    January 12, 2011, 21:15 GMT
    Cycling News

    Six-time national champion Wyman leads women's squad

    Helen Wyman, who won the British national cyclo-cross title an unprecedented six consecutive years, will lead the British team at the International Cycling Union's cyclo-cross world championships January 29-30 in St. Wendel, Germany.

    Wyman, 29, has won the national title every year since 2006. In addition to that title, she has three victories this season, including the GvA Trofee at the Koppenberg. She will be joined in the elite women's race by Gabby Day and Nikki Harris.

    National champion Paul Oldham will lead the elite men's team, with Jody Crawforth and Ian Field joining him.

    “This is still very much a developing team, but I think we're capable of some strong performances out in Germany. We're represented by the National Champions in each category, and we've got Helen Wyman who's coming into the competition on the back of the best season she's ever had," said team manager Paul Dixon.

    “We're also well represented in the junior category, thanks to the new 2010-11 Junior Development Programme which aimed to help develop talented junior cyclo cross riders. The fact we could select five riders from this group is a testament to the success of the programme."

    British team for the UCI Cyclo-Cross World Championships

    Elite men
    Jody Crawforth
    Ian Field
    Paul Oldham

    Elite women
    Gabby Day
    Nikki Harris
    Helen Wyman

    U23 men
    Kenta Gallagher
    Luke Gray

    Junior men
    Jack Clarkson
    Luke Grivell-Mellor
    Joe Moses
    Hugo Robinson
    Ali Slater