The Koppenbergcross and Twenty20 Cycling have teamed up in order to ensure that the race becomes the first European cyclo-cross race to provide equal prize money for both the men’s and women’s race field. The move closes a financial gap of 5,000 Euros. The race is set to take place on November 1, 2014.
The winner of the GP Twenty20 Cycling - the new name of the women’s race – will see an increase in prize money from 350 euros.
British cyclo-cross rider Helen Wyman welcomed the move, stating that it was a landmark move for women’s cycling.
"In my eyes, this is a huge step. It is a very significant moment for women's cycling. This allows women to make one step up the ladder towards equality. I spend a lot of my free time trying to advance women’s cyclo-cross and I hope this will lead to a chain reaction of races who do the same, as I know the support is there from sponsors, supporters and riders. To be a part of this development for the sport is fantastic for me."
“For the Koppenbergcross to be the first race in Europe to do this is very special. I love the Koppenbergcross, to me it is the biggest race outside of the World Championships. It is legendary. To have an American sponsor back the race shows how significant it is around the world. I can't thank Twenty20 Cycling enough on behalf of all of the racers that take part next season. I'm certainly already looking forward to the GP Twenty20 Cycling and hope to collect another cobble stone in 2014."
Kristopher Auer, manager of Twenty20 Cycling, added his support for the move. "Twenty20 Cycling Co. is a small two-store bicycle shop located in Baltimore and Savage, Maryland in the United States. One of the things that makes our business unique is how it developed from a cyclo-cross background. Since before we opened our business I have been supporting the growth of cyclo-cross in America."
"I was promoting UCI cyclo-cross races in Baltimore nearly a decade ago when I met my future business partners. Growing the sport has always been on our agenda and I've always looked to ensure both women and men can race with equal opportunity."