After some confusion earlier in the week over the amount of riders it was allowed to take to the World Cup round in the Czech Republic's Tabor, Belgium's national coach Rudy De Bie has announced the nation's complete line up for the event. The Belgians thought they were only allowed to bring nine riders to the event after the Czech Republic's Zdenek Stybar won the series' opening round, and took the lead in the UCI standings, but were later told that they were allowed 10 as they won the individual overall standing last season.
Following the first round of the World Cup on Sunday, De Bie calculated that he could select nine riders for the second round in Tabor, as the UCI was yet to release the updated points table. "If I tabulate the points from the race yesterday, I come to the conclusion that Zdenek Stybar has a few more points than Sven Nys," he told Sport.be. "Yesterday 10 riders were allowed to start, as the leader of the UCI ranking and the World Champion are automatically allowed to start."
Prior to the first World Cup round, where Stybar took the cyclo-cross points lead, Belgian Sven Nys (Rabobank) was leading the UCI rankings while compatriot Erwin Vervecken (Fidea) is the current world champion, allowing De Bie 10 entrants for Tabor. Since De Bie's decision to field nine riders on Monday, the UCI announced that the winner of last year's UCI World Cup was also an automatic start for all series' rounds in the following year, which allowed the re-instatement of Rob Peters to the line-up, meaning the team is unchanged since the last round.
De Bie also announced his selection for the up coming European championships being held in Hittnau, Switzerland. The team will be spearheaded by Under 23 World Cup leader and last year's winner Niels Albert.
Albert has expressed his disappointment with his selection for the event, as he originally decided that he would skip it in order to concentrate on the Super Prestige series. "The letter from the BK (the Belgian federation) was clear. No Euros means no selection for the Worlds," the Palmans rider told Gazet van Antwerpen. "Do you know what that will cost me? Because of my selection for the European champs I can't ride in Hamme-Zogge and that means I won't be able to achieve a good overall result in the super prestige series."
On November 4, De Bie will descend on the Swiss town with 19 riders, eight juniors, three women and eight under 23 riders.
Belgian team for Tabor World Cup: Erwin Vervecken (Fidea), Sven Nys (Rabobank), Bart Wellens (Fidea), Bart Aernouts (Rabobank), Klaas Vantornout (Fidea), Sven Vanthourenhout (Sunweb Pro Job), Kevin Pauwels (Fidea), Dieter Vanthourenhout (Easypay), Jan Verstraeten (Sunweb Pro Job), Rob Peeters (Landbouwkrediet - Tonissteiner)
Belgian squad for European championships:
Juniors: Stef Boden, Ruben Veestraeten, Wietse Bosmans, Vinnie Braet, Matthias Bossuyt, Gerry Druyts, Sven Beelen, Dany Lacroix
Under 23: Niels Albert, Tom Meeusen, Maxim De Busschere, Wim Leemans, Vincent Baestaens, Kenneth Van Compernolle, Stijn Huys, Quentin Bertholet
Women: Sanne Cant, Veerle Ingels, Katrien Pauwels