The cyclo-crosser of the 2004-2005 season is without doubt Belgian Sven Nys. With 25 wins to his credit, including a Belgian and World Championship, UCI number one and overall victories in the World Cup, Superprestige and Gazet van Antwerpen Trofee Veldrijden series, Nys won everything there was on offer. His fifth Superprestige series title in Vorselaar on Saturday was a record. It was by far his best season as a 'crosser and fittingly, he won yesterday's Sluitingsprijs in Oostmalle, the final race of the season.
"This is a serious achievement, one that I'm really proud of," said Nys after his 'grand slam' of wins. "Actually it's a little disappointing that it's over. I could have gone on for another month."
Nys' technique is one of the best of any 'crosser, and he makes it seem smooth and effortless, even though the reality might be different. "Easy? You should feel my back. It's nearly broken!" he said, before recalling his race in Oostmalle which he won by 44 seconds. "It was a very difficult parcours to ride in front for the whole time, but I quickly had a half a minute gap, and that is a lot on this circuit."
Although it will be difficult to repeat his successes next season, it's clear that Nys will again be the man to beat come September.
Related story: 2004 interview with Sven Nys