Cyclo-cross shorts: World Cup opens in Valkenburg

Bosmans with Lyme disease, Berden to represent Belgium?

World Cup cyclo-cross kicks off in the Netherlands this weekend

The best cyclo-cross racers in the world will head to Valkenburg in the Netherlands to compete in the opening round of the World Cup on October 19.

The series includes six rounds, beginning in Valkenburg and moving on to Koksijde in Belgium on November 22, Milton Keynes in Great Britain on November 29, Namur in Belgium on December 21, Heusden-Zolder in Belgium on December 26 and Hoogerheide in the Netherlands on January 25.

Last year, Dutchman Lars van der Haar and American rider Katie Compton won the World Cup series overall rankings.

The UCI has changed the rules for participation and now mandates that the top 50 riders in the UCI classification be given a chance to participate for their national teams. This puts Belgium at a distinct advantage, with the country now able to field 13 riders, including US-resident Ben Berden, who has not been chosen to represent Belgium in a World Cup since he confessed to doping in 2005 and served a 15-month ban.

Bosmans stricken with Lyme disease

Former U23 cyclo-cross World Cup overall winner Wietse Bosmans has been ill recently, and finally found out the cause, which he announced on Monday was Lyme disease.

The disease, which is caused by a bacterium that is spread through tick bites, can usually be cured with a course of antibiotics if caught early.

Bosmans had an accident in March of 2013, and was unable to live up to the promise of his stellar 2012-2013 season, but hopes that he will finally get back to his top level. "This year I'm going to make sure I get some good results, but first have to get that junk out of my body!" he wrote on Twitter.

Vos to rest until December

World cyclo-cross champion Marianne Vos will not take part in the UCI Cyclo-cross World Cup opener in her home country this coming weekend.

The Dutch rider will take an extended rest following her road season, according to Sport.be. She will start with a training camp in November and take to the World Cup circuit on December 26 in Zolder, with a focus on defending her title in Tabor, Czech Republic in January.

Van der Haar, Mourey add victories

Lars van der Haar (Giant-Shimano) picked up a win in the Elite men’s race at the Grote Prijs van Brabant in the Netherlands on Saturday. He beat fellow countryman Corné van Kessel (Telenet Fidea) and Belgium’s Jim Aernouts. European champion Helen Wyman (Kona) won the Elite woman’s race by five seconds ahead of Sophie de Boer (Kalas-NNOF) and Nikki Harris (Great Britain).

In France, French national champion Francis Mourey won the Elite men’s race at the UCI C1 Challenge de la France Cycliste #1 on Sunday. He took a solo win ahead of fellow countrymen Fabien Canal and Clément Venturini.

Over the border in Switzerland, Bryan Falaschi (Italy) won by over a minute ahead of a small group at the C2 GP 5 Sterne Region on Sunday. Sascha Weber (Germany) took the sprint for second place with Arnaud Grand (Switzerland) and Gioele Bertolini (Italy) taking third and fourth, respectively.

Racing also took place in Denmark at the UCI C2 Kronborg Cyclo-cross on Sunday. Germany’s Ole Quast beat the pair of Danish riders Kenneth Hansen and former national champion Joachim Parbo.

Kronborg Cyclo-cross video

De Boer and Nys lead Bpost Bank Trofee series

Sven Nys (Crelan-AA Drink Team) won the Elite men’s race in the opening round of the BPost Bank Trofee ahead of Mathieu van der Poel (BKCP-Powerplus) and Klass Vantornout (Sunweb-Napoleon Games).

Nys, who won the series last year, has taken the early overall lead ahead of Van de Poel, with Klaas Vantornout (Sunweb-Napoleon Games) in third.

Sophie de Boer (Kalas-NNOF) won the women's race with a seven-second advantage over Briton Helen Wyman to take the early lead in the women's series. Belgium’s Jolien Verschueren (Decock Woningbouw Vandekerckhove) finished third.

Bpost Bank Trofee, GP Mario de Clerq Ronse highlights can be found here.

Mani recovers from fractured wrist to take double wins in Rochester

Despite suffering from a fractured wrist several weeks ago, Caroline Mani (Raleigh Clement) took double victories at the Ellison Park Cyclo-cross Festival held on Saturday and Sunday. The Frenchwoman took a solo win by 17 seconds ahead of runner-up Meredith Miller (Noosa) and Courtenay McFadden (GE Capital) during the opening round.

She went on to claim a second win the following day in similar fashion, this time ahead of Maghalie Rochette (Luna Pro) in second and Miller in third.

US cyclo-cross champion Jeremy Powers (Aspire) took his eighth win of the season in the Elite men’s race ahead of Danny Summerhill (K-Edge/Felt) and Cameron Dodge. He did not participate in the second round, leaving the race open for Summerhill to take the win ahead of Dodge and Lukas Winterberg (Cannondale-Cyclocrossworld) in third.

Powers heads overseas to compete in the first World Cup held on October 19 in Valkenburg.

USA Cycling Pro CX heads to New Jersey

The USA Cycling Professional Cyclo-cross series enters the 16th and 17th rounds, both C2 events, at the HPCX in Jamesburg, New Jersey on October 18 and 19. The Elite men’s and women’s events will be held on a challenging course at Thompson Park.

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