After struggling with knee and elbow injuries in September, Katie Compton (Planet Bike) is back in top form after a blistering performance in Aigle, Switzerland, during the first World Cup round of the season. Compton grabbed her seventh career World Cup win and just like last year she will lead the World Cup rankings.
However, the US champion will not defend her leading position during next weekend's second World Cup round in Plzen, Czech Republic. Instead, Compton will fly back to Colorado. In November she will return to Europe to contest the third World Cup round in Koksijde, Belgium, which she has already won twice.
"We're spending more time at home this year so Katie can rest and train at home," said Mark Legg, Katie Compton's husband. "We're cutting back on the racing after the last couple year's experience. We have to race US Nationals in early December, with a hard November it doesn't allow Katie to train. This year she can train in November.
"[There's] no problem giving up the World Cup [lead], we're 100 percent committed to winning Worlds this season."
The World Cup kicked off in Aigle, Switzerland, at the International Cycling Union headquarters for their first round of what now officially is called the UCI Patrick Cyclo-cross World Cup. Prior to the start Legg revealed that the course was looking good for Compton's abilities and promised a strong ride.
That was an understatement as Compton set about crushing the opposition. She needed two laps to catch up with sole leader Daphny van den Brand (ZZPR.nl).
"Katie's bad start was due to forgetting the lights were starting the race instead of US races starting on a whistle," said Legg. "She hasn't been working on starts lately since we're coming into the season behind form due to the crash at MTB Worlds that forced Katie off the bike for three weeks."
Her third lap was the fastest one of the race, 6:30 for the 2.53 kilometre long course. After that lap she had a comfortable lead of twenty seconds over Van den Brand.
"Daphny crashed on a drop before pit two which opened up an instant gap," said Legg. "Daphny was under pressure from Katie driving the pace which most likely forced the error."
Compton didn't blow her engine and eventually she finished with half a minute over her Dutch rival.