By Jake Sisson
After weeks of heated competition, it’s time to call time on the inaugural season of Cyclocross Magazine’s UCI Fantasy Cyclocross. No amount of manipulation worked out to actually win me this thing, so I figured it was best to actually present the legitimate final standings in all their glory. All in all, my team choked in the most critical of situations, falling from 3rd – with the promise of a prize tantalizingly close – to a lowly 9th, too far down the list for any sort of cheating to save me. So, here we go, the final honors.
Tops on the week was AKD1 (David Diviney, USA) with 173 points. Interestingly enough, when I did a test run on the Fantasy system in the first week, I used the UCI C2 Steenbergcross as our case sample. AKD1 was the top scorer in that race. Things have really come full circle for Fantasy Cyclocross. Second place went to Escudera de Ciclocross (Rob Bauer, PER), breaking down cultural barriers – becoming the first Peruvian team to break onto the Fantasy cyclocross weekly podium – with 160 points. Third place went to Froglegs (Mark Lovejoy, USA) and Dugastly (Joel Budacki, USA) with 158 points. This week’s All-Star team amassed 227 points and was made up of the following riders (AKD1′s picks in bold, Individual score in parenthases: Sven Nys (30), Sven Vanthourenhout (22), Bart Aernouts (12), Tom Meeusen (30), Niels Albert (25), Kevin Pauwels (19), Daphny Van den Brand (25), Reza Hormes-Ravenstijn (12), Marianne Vos (30) and Sanne Cant (22).
As has been more or less a foregone conclusion for a number of weeks now, Montanacyclocross.com (Shaun Radley, USA) took home the overall title with 5574 points total. Vorm een Team Helikopter (Mike Rolcik, USA) snagged second place with 5403 points but only did so by a margin of a single point, just barely outpacing Pedal Sports (Mike Davis, USA), who jumped from 6th place last week, to 3rd place this week, finishing up with 5402 points. 4th place went to SAdamson (Shaun Adamson, USA) with 5369 points and the podium was filled up by Christian Skinner, USA) (Christian Skinner, USA) who finished with 5355 points. To put it all in perspective, the highest scoring team possible on the season score 6324 points, 12% higher than the highest scoring fantasy team. The season’s best team is as follows, with Montanacyclocross.com’s picks in bold: Sven Nys (1195), Zdenek Stybar (651), Klaas Vantornout (462), Philipp Walsleben (630), Niels Albert (564), Kevin Pauwels (583), Daphny Van den Brand (714), Christel Ferrier-Bruneau (255), Katie Compton (519), Georgia Gould (392) and Marianne Vos (359). 8 out of 11 isn’t half bad.
Here’s some fancy numbers that apply to everyone. The average score for the winning team each week was 286.2 points. Not a bad score, but obviously that was swayed somewhat by a number of weeks that registered more than 500 points and a number of weeks that scored below 200 points. The average All-Star top score was 359.7 points. A particularly interesting number is the average percent difference between the All-Star team and top scoring individual team. That number was a whopping 20.4%! That just goes to show you that it’s awfully hard to pick the highest scoring team from week to week. The only week that had someone pick the All-Star team was week 1 – when the only race on the calendar was CrossVegas. The Average score for the year for all teams (taking the average of the average score from each week) was 168.2. Not bad, but let’s aim higher next year!
The lucky winner gets this Bianchi LS Wool Jersey
So I just won this thing, what’s in it for me? There was hints of wonderful prizes thrown around last weekend. Well, for his work at the top, Montanacyclocross.com walked away with a Long Sleeve Wool Bianchi Jersey! Vorm een Team Helikopter snagged a pair of Kenda Komando 700x35c Tires! Last but least, Pedal Sports gets to take home a fancy Cyclocross Magazine wall calendar, starting with the month of March!
Thanks everyone for playing, I appreciate you taking time to follow along with my little pipe dream. If you’ve got any feedback or suggestions I’d love to hear them. Next year, however, try not to beat me, if you do, I take it very personally. Just a warning.
Check out the final overall standings here: Overall Fantasy Cyclocross Standings.