Plenty of news tidbits around, so here are a couple.
The 2019 Cyclocross World Championships have been awarded to Bogense, Denmark. The city is located on the island of Funen (Fyn), the large one between Jutland and the one that contains Copenhagen. Basically in the center of the country. This marks the second time that Denmark has hosted the event, after the 1998 championships were held in Middelfart (I know). A quick internet search reveals that there are some small hills around Bogense, and the UCI has also announced a World Cup event for the town to be held on November 19 this year, so we should get a bit of a preview for what’s in store then.
Another development is the release of the CX World Cup schedule, which includes one major change, moving the beloved Koksijde race up a month to October 22. Here’s the whole list.
UCI Cyclocross World Cup 2017-2018
Iowa City (September 16, 2017)
Waterloo (September 24, 2017)
Koksijde (October 22, 2017)
Bogense (November 19, 2017)
Seven (November 25, 2017)
Names (December 17, 2017)
Heusden-Zolder (December 26, 2017)
Nommay (January 21, 2018)
Hoogerheide (January 28, 2018)
World Championships: Valkenburg (3-4 February 2018)
The Koksijde move bumps Valkenburg, which had the early slot this year but is happy to trade it out for the World Championships next year. Bogense bumps Fiuggi out of the lineup, and Waterloo replaces Las Vegas (in so many ways). Nommay returns to the lineup for the first time in four seasons.
Back in Bieles/Belvaux, things seem to be softening up a bit on the ground, as witnessed by this clip of riders actually making it across the nasty off-camber section that gave us so much social media hilarity yesterday. The Dutch guy crushing the upper line is our very own Lars Boom, would-be CX god.
I could try this 1000 times and not come close to looking so good, even once. If anyone wants to lead a Kickstarter campaign to get Lars back to CX full time, I’m down.
In the Dutch media you can read about how Mathieu van der Poel has already won, and maybe he has. The 2015 Champion says he’s at about 90 percent after his return to racing following his crash over the holidays. Meanwhile, Wout Van Aert seems to be at odds with his team, with the Belgian media picking away at the scab of the Kevin Pauwels doping control form that went out on social media, as if that were a shot at Van Aert. [I’m a little perplexed at why Pauwels promoting his cleanliness is an act of aggression.]
Anyway, mum’s the word on Van Aert’s knee problem, but people seem to believe it’s real, and it’s not spectacular.
Schedule for this weekend’s events is as follows:
Saturday, January 28
Junior Men at 11:00 CET
U23 Women at 13:00 CET
Elite Women at 15:00 CET
Sunday, January 29
U23 Men at 11:00 CET
Elite Men at 15:00 CET
The UCI YouTube Channel should be a viable source of live feeds, one of the happier developments of the last 20 years.
Finally, if anyone can explain Janker-Gate to me, I’m all ears. In the meantime, Belgian media, you be you.