Can Nys win a seventh Koppenberg 'cross?

Vos a favourite in women's race

Sven Nys will be seeking a record seventh victory in the Koppenberg cyclo-cross race in Oudenaarde on Sunday when the GvA Trofee series continues for its second round.

A winner of the past five overall GvA Trofee titles, Nys lost the first round of this year's series in Namen to World Champion Niels Albert, but has been on the rebound after a dismal start to the season.

The Koppenberg 'cross could be his chance to re-assert his dominance in the cyclo-cross world. Nys has shown himself to be unbeatable on the course on seven occasions, and the six most recent editions.

Last year it was Dutch world champion Lars Boom who was the closest challenger as the pair battled through ankle-deep mud on the final lap, both crashing in the same bend, before Nys, barely recognizable underneath a mask of muck, emerged victorious.

With Boom taking 'cross lightly this year to focus on the road, Albert remains Nys' biggest threat.

Last year, Albert struggled with the rainy, muddy conditions on the course and crashed numerous times on his way to third place.  However, Albert has shown so far this season that his form is far superior to Nys', and has won nine races including two World Cups already.

In the women's race, current 'cross world champion Marianne Vos will be the heavy favourite for the win, but will have to fend off the challenge of her own compatriots Daphny Van Den Brand and Sanne van Paassen. Other contenders include Helen Wyman, Pavla Havlikova and Belgian Sanne Cant.

The racing beings at 1030 with the first UCI-classified race, the Junior Men, followed by the U23 Men at 1200, Elite Women at 1330 and Elite Men at 1500 CET.

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