Van der Haar confirmed to defend CrossVegas title

2011 CrossVegas champion Lars van der Haar (Rabobank Offroad Team) will return to defend his title in the UCI C1-rated cyclo-cross race taking place in Las Vegas, Nevada on September 19. Van der Haar won the 2011 edition in a tight sprint finale over Christian Heule and Rob Peeters to kick off a stellar 'cross season.

Van der Haar was a dominant force in the U23 ranks, winning 14 races in total during the 2011-2012 'cross season. Highlights include victories in three of four World Cup races en route to the overall title, three race victories in each of the Superprestige and GVA Trofee series en route to overall titles for both, the Dutch U23 national championship, the European U23 championship, all capped off by his second-straight U23 world championship.

The 21-year-old Dutchman is still eligible to compete as a U23 rider during the upcoming 'cross season, but Van der Haar was given permission by the UCI to contest all eight World Cups as well as the world championship in the elite ranks.

Van der Haar will be joined by two Rabobank teammates in CrossVegas, Niels Wubben in the elite men's race plus Sanne van Paassen will contest the UCI C1-rated women's race.

Wubben, 24, competed on both the 'cross and mountain bike circuits last year, highlighted by a bronze medal behind Lars Boom and Thijs van Amerongen in the Dutch 'cross championship in January.

Sanne van Paassen, 24, will make her debut for Rabobank at CrossVegas and enjoyed a strong 'cross campaign in Europe last season where she won four races, finished on the podium in three World Cups and placed fourth in the world championships. The previous season Van Paassen won the overall women's World Cup title.

"We have always sent the best possible riders to CrossVegas, it's our way of supporting cyclo-cross in the USA and bringing attention to our sponsor Giant Bicycles during Interbike," said Rabobank – Giant Bicycles Team spokesman Tom Davies.

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