Sven Nys' management has hit back at reports that the Belgian star's starting fees are pushing other riders out of the picture for race organisers. "We deplore reports in the press in recent days about the starting fees, which come under a contractual arrangement between athlete and organiser with a confidentiality clause," said Lotte Vanreusel, athlete representative for Golazo Sports.
"We'd like to repeat the essence of the case (following a short press release on September 19, which over the past days different observers have all too often lost sight of). Sven Nys has ridden in less races this season. Immediately after the Olympic Games, Sven and his coach Paul Van Den Bosch discussed [his schedule] and established a rough calendar.
"Those other races must fit in that calendar in the first place," continued Vanreusel. "Then we apply the principle of supply and demand: Sven rides less, he is often less visible, but he can give his all in the races in which he starts. It is for the organiser to determine whether he is prepared to meet the asking price."
Nys' coach, Paul Van Den Bosch explained that, "Sven has been busy with the Olympic Games and some intensive months [of preparation] leading up to it. We have 'pruned' Sven's program. He rode less than a dozen races last winter. Moreover, after the cross season there was a new mountain bike spring and summer for him to compete in."
Vanreusel concluded by saying that, "We hope that we have provided sufficient clarity but also hope that everyone can now concentrate on cyclocross itself; that the legs will speak and the general public can warm to many a spectacle."