Cyclo-cross shorts: Cant moves into World Cup lead, Pauwels extends his points total

Cant moves into World Cup lead in Milton Keynes, Pauwels increases lead in men’s standings

Belgium champion Sanne Cant (Enertherm - BKCP) took the lead in the World Cup standings on Saturday after she won a nail-biting sprint to the finish line ahead of US champion Katie Compton (Trek Factory Racing) in Milton Keynes. It was her second World Cup victory of the season, after winning the weekend before in Koksijde. She is now leading the standings with 148 points ahead of Compton, who has 132 points and Nikki Harris (Young Telenet-Fidea) with 110 points.

Kevin Pauwels (Sunweb - Napoleon Games Cycling Team) won the elite men’s World Cup, pushing him further ahead of his rivals in the overall standings with a total of 220 points. His teammate Klaas Vantornout is second with 185 points and Corné Van Kessel (Telenet - Fidea) is third with 163 points.

The fourth World Cup round will be held on December 21 in Namur, Belgium.

Nys and De Boer lead the Bpost Bank Trofee standings after Flandriencross

Sven Nys (Crelan-AA Drink) and Sophie de Boer (Kalas-NNOF Cycling Team) have held onto their respective leads in the Bpost Bank Trofee overall standings despite disappointing performances in the third round at Flandriencross-Hamme on Sunday.

De Boer crashed on the last lap of the elite women’s race and lost time to the eventual winner Sanne Cant (Enertherm-BKCP), Ellen Van Loy (VZW Young Telenet Fidea), Helen Wyman (Kona) and Pavla Havlikova (VZW Young Telenet Fidea). She placed fifth on the day and managed to continue her lead in the standings by 1:11 minutes ahead of Van Loy and 2:04 ahead of Wyman.

Nys started the elite men’s race in a select group that formed during the opening laps. He slipped back and wasn't able to catch back up to the two leaders Wout Van Aert (Vastgoedservice - Golden Palace), who eventually won the race, and Mathieu Van Der Poel (BKCP - Powerplus), who finished second. Nys lost the sprint for third to Philipp Walsleben (BKCP - Powerplus), and finished fourth on the day.

Nys continues to top the series standings that are based on time, with a healthy lead of 1:58 minutes on Kevin Pauwels (Sunweb - Napoleon Games Cycling Team) and 2:09 ahead of Van Aert.

Haley wins junior race in Milton Keynes, US women stack the top 20 in Flandriencross

One weekend after Gage Hecht won the junior race in Koksijde, his teammate Gavin Haley took the top step on the podium at the junior race held in Milton Keynes on Saturday. The event was not officially a World Cup race but it was held on the same day and at the same venue as the elite men's and women's round three of the World Cup series.

The American women took to the start line at the Bpost Bank Trofee’s Flandriencross-Hamme and placed four riders in the top 20. Kaitlin Antonneau was the highest placed American in eighth place, 1:48 minutes behind the day’s winner Cant. Elle Anderson (Kalas-NNOF) was next in 10th place, followed by Meredith Miller (Noosa) in 13th and Christine Vardaros in 20th place.

Fontana prepares to defend Italian cyclo-cross title in January

After securing a bronze medal at the cross country World Championships in Hafjell, Noway in September, Italian cyclo-cross champion Marco Aurelio Fontana is recovered and ready to start his 2014-2015 cyclo-cross season. The Cannondale Factory Racing rider will compete in a series of national and international races to help prepare for his title defence at the Italian National Championships in Pezze di Greco in southern Italy on January 11.

“My goal for 2015 is to be strong during the mountain bike season,” Fontana said. “Cyclo-cross is an ideal preparation, for this reason I am choosing some competitions to participate in during December and January months. I am looking forward to seeing the fans on the race circuit again, and feeling the rhythm of my best days in my legs.”

Lack of funding and increased UCI fees end Baystate Cyclocross Weekend

The Baystate Cyclocross Weekend held annually in Sterling, Massachusetts, will not continue as a UCI race in 2015 because of a lack of sponsorship funding and the increasing costs associated with putting on an event of that status. Tom Stevens is the current organizer of the race, which has been in existence for 31 years. It has been a UCI-sanctioned event for 10 years.

“It’s unfortunate to lose a UCI race, but it’s good that they know in advance,” Cycle-Smart International organizer Adam Myerson said in an interview with DirtWire.TV. “The bar just keeps getting raised every year, in terms of what the minimum cost is to put a UCI race on, and it’s more and more expensive. If Tom doesn’t have the sponsors and can’t rely on a thousand racers every day to cover the costs ... he’s been doing this for a long time and it’s OK if he doesn’t want to do this anymore.”

Myerson believes that race could still continue as a non-UCI event “It certainly won’t be a UCI race next year,” he said. “I think this race could still survive as a local race, it would still get a good turn-out, if you remove a lot of the overhead that goes into the level of production required to be a UCI race. It would be one of the most popular.”

The last set of Baystate Cyclocross Weekend UCI events were a success with Ellen Noble (JAM Fund/NCC) winning the elite women's races on both days, and Curtis White (Cannondale-Cyclocrossworld) winning the elite men's race on Saturday and Kerry Werner (Optum Pro Cycling CX Team p/b KBS) winning on Sunday.


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