- Article published:
- February 1, 2013, 14:36
- Cycling News
All races to be contested on Saturday
The organisers of the UCI Cyclo-Cross world championships in Louisville, Kentucky have confirmed that all the races will be held on Saturday due to a risk of flooding on the course on Sunday.
The revised race schedule was decided after meetings between the local authorities, organisers and the UCI. It means that the four titles will be contested on one day, at the following (local) times. The tight schedule means the medal ceremonies will be held at the end of the racing, following the Elite men's race.
Forecast data from the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) projects that high water levels in the Ohio River will cause Beargrass Creek to flood the low lying areas of Eva Bandman Park in Louisville, in the early hours on Sunday morning and that water level will continue to rise for the subsequent 48 hours.
Extraordinary measures are currently being done to ensure that the races will still be held in their entirety. All Sunday tickets will be honored at the gate on Saturday which will open at 8 a.m.
"We have had some crazy weather this week - from tornados to snow... upstream there has been heavy rain and the Army Corps of Engineers is predicting the river will flood the course by 1am Sunday morning," technical director Joan Hanscom told Cyclingnews.
"The Parks Department has taken extraordinary measures to build a temporary dam to keep the river back for Saturday. What they've done has been nothing short of miraculous. But mother nature can't be held back entirely."
"All of the Sunday tickets will be honored on Saturday - the gates will open at 8am rather than 9. USA Cycling will be issuing refunds for any unused Sunday tickets."
Race Schedule for Saturday February 2:
Junior men: 9:45am
Elite men: 2:30pm.
- Article published:
- February 1, 2013, 18:02
- Peter Hymas
US champion gets pre-race boost as Fuji steps in with bike sponsorship
For an uncomfortably lengthy stint of the current cyclo-cross season, Jonathan Page faced the grim prospect that perhaps something which had previously been a given in his years in the elite ranks, a start at the 'cross world championships, would not come to fruition. And this of all years, the first time in the history of the cyclo-cross world championships that not only would the event take place outside of Europe, but on American soil in Louisville, Kentucky.
Adding insult to injury is the fact that Page is the only American to ever stand on the podium at the conclusion of an elite men's cyclo-cross world championship, a milestone achieved with his silver medal performance at the 2007 Worlds in Hooglede-Gits, Belgium.
"It became quite apparent that there could be a world championship in America without Jonathan Page," Page told Cyclingnews. "It's not that I wasn't trying, I was sick from late October into almost the middle of December. Basically there were two respiratory infections, and I had to go on antibiotics two times in a row and that's just never good. I could not afford to stop racing so I would go to the races and suffer, but I wasn't even in the same race, so to speak."
The season had already commenced under trying circumstances as Page had lost his title bike sponsor and scrambled to make ends meet with secondary sponsors. Still, Page found some success in his usual early season block of racing in the US with a pair of second place finishes plus six other results in which he was never worse than eighth, but after traveling to his residence in Oudenaarde, Belgium, for another European campaign, the results were nowhere to be found, curtailed by health issues.
But Page is nothing if not resilient, particularly with his back against the wall. Come late December the only means for Page to ensure an automatic Worlds team selection was to place top-15 at a World Cup. Jeremy Powers, Ryan Trebon and Tim Johnson seemed to be locks for the automatic bids earned by being the top-three ranked US riders on the UCI standings, and at this point Page wasn't planning on attending US nationals in mid-January, where the winner would also earn an automatic bid.
Flickers of form began to flourish with a 12th place result on December 22nd at Belgium's GP Rouwmoer, but the following day provided the elusive automatic bid - a 15th place finish in Namur, Belgium at the fifth round of the World Cup. Six days later he finished fifth at the Versloys Cyclo-cross and on New Year's Day he notched another top-10 with a ninth place at the GP Sven Nys.
Then Page received a lifeline to contest the US 'cross nationals in Wisconsin, setting into motion a season-salvaging string of events. "After my bicycle company [sponsorship] went through we were in some serious financial difficulties, so it wouldn't have been financially responsible of me to come back [to nationals]," said Page. "I wasn't planning on it, but ENGVT and Bob Downs of Planet Bike pitched in, they got me to the start line and I didn't have to worry about any financial burdens. I couldn't say enough and thank them for what they've done."
Resplendent in an ENGVT skinsuit, the 36-year-old Page soloed to his fourth elite national championship win on a frigid, icy parcours, a long nine years since he'd previously earned a stars-and-stripes jersey. "This is the most satisfying victory of the four [elite] nationals wins. Myself and my family went through a lot this season and it feels good and gratifying to finish in the top spot. It's good for the whole family and the people who've supported me. It's a thanks to them, more than anything."
More good news arrived this past Wednesday, as Page, who rode to his fourth national title on a bike with its logos taped over, announced that he'd received bike