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First Edition Cycling News, Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Date published:
October 22, 2013, 1:00 BST
  • Nys still dominant in 16th season of cyclo-cross

    Martin Bina, Sven Nys and Niels Albert on the podium in Ronse
    Article published:
    October 13, 2013, 20:00 BST
    Brecht Decaluwé

    No slowing down for world champion

    Having dominated the cyclo-cross scene for 15 seasons, world champion Sven Nys (Crelan-KDL) proved the years have only brought out his best when he rode to a commanding victory in the GP Mario de Clerq on Sunday.

    While most riders lose much-needed punch in the one hour cyclo-cross races as they age, 37-year-old Nys has shown no signs of slowing down, despite a persistent back injury.

    During a stormy Sunday afternoon in Ronse, Nys needed only one attack to separate himself from his rivals. The storm winds and rain, combined with the demanding course up and around the Hotondberg, were all in his favour, said Nys.

    "These are the circumstances I like though the climbs are a bit too steep to ride on them, that made for a lot of running," Nys said.

    The world champion didn't start well but quickly moved up through the field to make it into the first selection. During the third lap Nys was spotted sliding off a hill next to his bike rather than the preferred position on top of it. "I made a mistake but recovered well. A little later I took the lead and felt I was the strongest man in the race."

    During the fifth of seven laps the decisive moment was to come. While Nys rode in front, Martin Bina (Kwadro-Stannah) tumbled in third position, and Nys seized the moment and attacked, overpowering his younger rivals both in strength and technical skills, once again. Even so, Nys didn't want to hear the prediction of another Nys-dominated cyclo-cross season.

    "Today I was on top of the others but I'm sure there will be other occasions where I'll be between them. Martin Bina is very strong, so are Niels Albert and Lars van der Haar. There's also a strong Klaas Vantornout and Kevin Pauwels who was unlucky today," Nys said. "I'm 37, I'm not worrying a lot. My build-up to the season wasn't like I hoped it would be due to jet lag. The trip to the...

  • Dombroski lives on in Boulder cyclo-cross

    The broken heart symbolized the mourning for Amy Dombroski
    Article published:
    October 15, 2013, 14:47 BST
    Mary Topping

    "Her spirit is here forever"

    Hundreds of broken hearts traversed the Boulder, Colorado cyclo-cross courses over the weekend as the cycling community paid tribute to Amy Dombroski. The 26-year-old who was killed in a training accident on October third, moved to Boulder after high school, having grown up in Vermont.

    The promoters of the UCI Colorado Cross Classic and Boulder Cup staged a lap in her honor prior to the elite races. On Saturday, race announcer David Towle spoke to the junior and adult amateurs and professional riders who assembled for the lap.

    "Amy's death has not stopped reverberating through this community," he said. "If there is anything you can take from her well-lived life and apply to your own, please do. I think a lot of us have talked about her smile. Her smile stays with you for a long, long, time."

    Over 100 people rolled away from the finish line and onto the gravely course. Colorado State and Belgian Flanders flags flew in the light breeze. Some couldn't smile and wiped away tears. Others shared stories about Dombroski, spoke about the holes left in their hearts. Nearly all, if not all, of the elite riders at the Boulder races knew Dombroski personally. Jamey Driscoll grew up in her Vermont hometown. Elle Anderson attended the same school, Burke Mountain Academy.

    "I've been thinking about her a lot," Anderson said at the Cross Classic. "It's just wonderful to see all the amazing tributes, and remembrances, and rides in honor of her."

    Yannick Eckmann, who lives in Boulder, stayed in the same hotel and trained with Dombroski last year in Europe.

    "It's a good way to remember her because she was passionate about biking," Eckmann said on Sunday, responding to a question about how the memory laps and...

  • Gallery: Familiar formula for 2013 Superprestige

    The sun sets on the Superprestige
    Article published:
    October 16, 2013, 19:07 BST
    Cycling News

    Cyclo-cross series gets underway in Zonhoven

    The 2013-2014 Hansgrohe Superprestige was presented this week with a promise to stick to the formula which has made the eight-race series one of the most prestigious over its 31 year history.

    Organiser Etienne Gevaert took a dig at the bpost Bank Trofee, which introduced a time classification and bonus sprints last season, stating, "We do not like innovations. We will not manipulate the races with an intermediate sprint", according to

    The eight-race series gets underway next weekend in Ruddervoorde, then heads to the sand dunes of Zonhoven before moving on to the lung-busting stairs of Hamme-Zogge, the slick off-camber turns of Gavere and on to the only Dutch round in Gieten in November. The holiday race in Diegem takes place on December 29, then the series takes a break until after the world championships with its season closers in Hoogstraten and Middelkerke in February.

    There will be course changes to the rounds in Gieten and Diegem. The race in the Netherlands will move to its previous location along the Nyslootsweg, ensuring a sandy course, while the organisers' attempts to create and indoor course in Hoogstraten wasn't approved by the UCI, so the course will be a flat ride through the meadow.

    Expect world champion Sven Nys to battle for his 13th overall series victory. The Belgian won his 60th Superprestige race in Hoogstraten earlier this year en route to series win number 12.

    There are also series classifications for juniors and U23 men, but no series overall for women.

    2013-2014 Hansgrohe Superprestige
    October 27, 2013: Ruddervoorde
    November 3, 2013: Zonhoven
    November 10, 2013: Hamme-Zogge
    November 17, 2013: Gavere
    November 24, 2013: Gieten
    December 29, 2013: Diegem
    February 9, 2014: Hoogstraten
    February 15, 2014: Middelkerke



  • Page energized for another European 'cross campaign

    USA champion Jonathan Page (Fuji-Spy-Competitive Cyclist)
    Article published:
    October 17, 2013, 14:20 BST
    Ted Burns

    Final season in Belgium for US champion?

    What a difference a year makes. At the start of the 2012-2013 cyclo-cross season Jonathan Page was in search of a title sponsor and dealing with the stress of setting up a new home in Utah. After winning the 2013 US national cyclo-cross championship in Madison, Wisconsin, on January 13, Page was visibly relieved and the victory led to a three-year deal with bike manufacturer Fuji. The new relationship has energized Page to take his family back over to Belgium for another European cyclo-cross season.

    Page is a pragmatic man. A no-nonsense, New England work ethic is deeply ingrained in his personality, and his fourth national championship did not leave much time for celebration. "It's nice, but I had to get back to work, and get the good results again," said Page about his championship win. "In Belgium, you are only as good as your last bike race, and if you didn't do that well then you got problems."

    After setting up his Utah house in the summer of 2012, Page returned with his family for an extended US stay last March. After living the last several months in the US, and due to his strong American sponsorships, Page is starting to look at relocating to the US full-time.

    "I'm considering, strongly considering, coming back and racing in the United States," said Page. "My sponsors have been very supportive of me regardless of what I'm going to do, so that feels very good."

    In addition to training, and continued work on his home in Utah, Page spent time over the summer working with Fuji on their next generation of cyclo-cross bikes. "It's fun to be part of developing another cyclo-cross bike for next season and putting my two cents in so they [Fuji] can run with it," said Page. "It's fun to be a part of it, have somebody that listens to you and apply what I've told them into numbers."

    At 37, Page is one of the veteran riders of...

  • Nys calls for radios and helmet cameras in cyclo-cross

    Reigning world champion Sven Nys (Crelan-KDL) awaits the start of Kermiscross
    Article published:
    October 20, 2013, 10:34 BST
    Stephen Farrand

    World champion wears number one in Valkenburg World Cup

    As the cyclo-cross season steps up a gear with the first round of the World Cup in Valkenburg, world champion Sven Nys (Crelan KDL Cycling Team) has called for the sport to copy Formula 1 motor racing and allow the use of video cameras on riders helmets, race radios and the creation of cyclo-cross paddock, where teams can hosts VIP guests in special motor homes.

    "Why can’t I wear a helmet camera? Or use earpieces to communicate with the mechanics?" Nys asked in his weekly column in the Gazet van Antwerpen newspaper, Sporza reported.

    "This season all the World Cup races are live on YouTube. That's important for the U.S. market," he added, calling for the sport to innovate and evolve.

    "These things (cameras) have become so small that you hardly feel that you are carrying it. In Las Vegas Sven Vanthourenhout was asked to wear one but the UCI wouldn’t allow it.”

    "And if I compare our sport with the F1 there’s lots we can do. Why are there no race radios to communicate with the mechanics? Those conversations could be then used during the television broadcast."

    "The sport can be more professional in many ways. It’d be good to have team trucks where riders can prepare but where VIPs can be welcomed too.”

    Number one

    Nys will wear number one in the opening round of the cyclo-cross World Cup in Valkenburg in the Netherlands, wearing the rainbow jersey as world champion.

    Fifty-five riders from 16 countries will line up for the start in the Elite men’s race. Also in action is 2012 World Cup winner Niels Albert (BKCP-Powerplus) and Martin Bina (Kwadro-Stannah) who...

  • Compton opens World Cup season with silver medal

    Vos is congratulated by Katie Compton.
    Article published:
    October 20, 2013, 21:45 BST
    Cycling News

    American contingent races in Valkenburg

    Katie Compton (Trek Cyclo-cross Collective) began the 2013-2014 UCI Cyclo-cross World Cup season in fine fashion on Sunday, placing second in the elite women's race in Valkenburg, Netherlands.

    Compton, who topped the elite women's World Cup standings last season, was 1:35 behind winner Marianne Vos, who crossed the finish line in 37:56. Nikki Harris rounded out the podium, placing third, 17 seconds behind Compton.

    Three other American racers finished within the top-20 of the elite women's race. Kaitlin Antonneau ( finished 13th in the race, only 4:05 behind Vos. Arley Kemmerer (C3-Twenty20 Cycling) finished her race only six seconds behind Antonneau in 15th place. Meredith Miller (California Giant Berry Farms-Specialized) completed her race only two spots and 30 seconds behind Kemmerer. Christine Vardaros (BABOCO Cycling Team) was two laps behind, in 39th place.

    In the men's race, Jonathan Page (Fuji-Spy-Competitive Cyclist), the reigning US cyclo-cross national champion, was the sole American representative and he finished 4:49 behind the race's winner, Lars van der Haar, in 30th place.

    In his first World Cup race as an U23 racer, Logan Owen (California Giant Berry Farms-Specialized) paced the Americans' effort, placing 21st in the race. Owen was 3:18 behind the winner, Michael Vanthourenhout. Americans Curtis White ( and Tobin Ortenblad (California Giant Berry Farms-Specialized) also contested the race and finished one lap behind.

    The three American junior men who competed in Valkenburg finished within five minutes of the race winner, Lucas Dubau. Maxx Chance (Clif Bar Development...

  • Nys, Compton lead first UCI 'cross rankings of season

    Reigning world champion Sven Nys (Crelan-KDL) awaits the start of Kermiscross
    Article published:
    October 22, 2013, 17:48 BST
    Peter Hymas

    Valkenburg winner Lucas Dubau is top junior

    The first UCI cyclo-cross rankings of the 2013-2014 season were released today following the opening World Cup round on Sunday in Valkenburg and there's little change at the top of the standings as previous season's final leaders Sven Nys and Katie Compton continue in their respective top spots.

    While a disastrous outing in Valkenburg for reigning world champion Sven Nys (Crelan KDL), who withdrew after snapping a chain, put a serious dent in his World Cup ambitions, the 37-year-old Belgian remains on top of the elite men's UCI standings with 2,150 points. Nys finished the previous season on top of the standings and in the rolling 12-month tabulation format he picked up where he left off. The top six riders in the standings, in fact, all held steady in their positions with Niels Albert (BKCP-Powerplus) at second overall, 132 points behind Nys, followed by Valkenburg runner-up Kevin Pauwels (Sunweb-Napoleon Games) with 1,714 points, 436 behind the world champion.

    Pauwels's teammate Klaas Vantornout, the Belgian champion, is close behind in fourth with 1,700 points while Sunday's World Cup winner Lars van der Haar (Rabobank Development Team) is fifth with 1,496 points.

    The biggest upwards mover near the top of the rankings is German champion Philipp Walsleben (BKCP-Powerplus), the third place finisher in Valkenburg, who jumped from his 15th position at the end of last season to 8th with 1,076 points.

    Jeremy Powers (Rapha-Focus) is the top North American rider in 21st place with 577 points, followed closely by Tim Johnson (Cannondale p/b in 22nd with 556 points.

    The top four countries in the elite men's nation standings remain unchanged with Belgium in its usual position on top. Belgium has a commanding lead with 5,882 points,...

  • Rising cyclo-cross star Anderson aiming for Europe

    Elle Anderson (CalGiant Berry Farm/ Specialized) seemed happy with her performance today
    Article published:
    October 22, 2013, 21:07 BST
    Ted Burns

    American hopes to continue early season success

    Elle Anderson (California Giant-Specialized) currently sits at the top of the US Pro CX standings after a strong early season campaign, which includes victories at both days of the Trek CXC Cup and Gran Prix of Gloucester. Despite her early season dominance, the big question was how she would fare against top professionals like Katie Compton (Trek Cyclo-cross Collective) and Katerina Nash (Luna), neither of whom raced in September. Anderson quieted her critics in early October with second place finish on the first day of racing at the Providence Cyclo-cross Festival, a UCI C1 race. Her podium spot, between Nash and Compton, proved she was ready to be in the mix with the big kids.

    "It feels like a dream sometimes, I just need to pinch myself," said Anderson about sharing the stage with Compton and Nash. "These are women I've really looked up to in the sport for all the years that I've been in cyclo-cross and climbing up the ranks. It's just and honor to be in the mix, to see what they are doing, see their lines, follow their wheels, and see their tactics."

    Anderson suffered through her first rough patch of the year recently at Colorado’s UCI race weekend. On the first day of racing at the Colorado Cross Classic, Anderson suffered a starting line mechanical, and despite racing from dead last, she fought her way back into seventh place. Her problems continued the next day at the Boulder Cup when Anderson washed out in one of the dusty corners and didn't finish the race.

    After the race Anderson was disappointed, but kept but kept her recent run of luck in perspective. "I had a fun race on Saturday despite the odds," said Anderson. "I had a little bit of bad luck, and it resulted in not my best weekend, but I still went out there and had some fun."

    Like several notable cyclists, such as Julie Furtado, and Allison Powers, Anderson came to cycling from alpine skiing where she competed in super-G and downhill. Her athletic talent...