After a busy few weeks, both for your moderator and the cyclocross peloton, things are starting to settle out for the upcoming push for the World Championships. The big favorites are beginning to get their games in order, and, barring a few outliers (see: Neils Albert and his fractured ribs), the big names you’d expect to be on the list are hitting their stride. Case in point is this weekend’s big scorer Zdenek Stybar, who was dominant en route to his win at the Roubaix World Cup over the weekend. Sven Nys looked to be the big favorite coming into the weekend, but the Belgian Champion could only muster a third place over the weekend. Still, with the overall standings out of reach for Nys, you have to wonder if he’s riding conservatively and will take a real crack at the World Championships.
Klaas Vantornout had arguably the best race of the weekend, compared to his season-long results, jumping away from an extremely elite group of riders to take second place in Roubaix. Gerben de Knegt had a modest day in Roubaix but made up for it with a win at the Internationale Centrumcross van Surhuisterveen. Katerina Nash had the breakout performance of a lifetime in Roubaix, vaulting herself to the top spot on the favorites list, with two weeks to go until the World Championships, that happen to take place in her back yard. Hanka Kupfernagel showed that she was coming into a richer vein of form by finishing second and Marianne Vos finally sowed a crack in her World Championship armour by fading to third in Roubaix, but still had a respectable point total with her win in Surhuisterveen. Tom Meeusen has people calling him the next Sven Nys after taking home another Espoir accolade with his win in Roubaix and David Van der Poel continued his streak of untouchable results, winning another round of the World Cup.
With strong performances coming from the usual suspects over the weekend, the All-Star team had a total score of 650 points, good for the third best single week score of the year. The All-Star team is as follows:
Zdenek Stybar (60), Neils Albet (20), Klaas Vantornout (50), Gerben de Knegt (58), Bart Aernouts (43), Tom Meeusen (60), David Van der Poel (60), Hanka Kupfernagel (50), Sanne Van Paassen (54), Marianne Vos (74), Katerina Nash (60), Reza Hormes-Ravenstijn (36)
On the week, it was a familiar face that led the way, this week with 443 points. Pedal Sports (Mike Davis, USA) took home another winning week, to further extend his lead in the game. While few have been able to beat Pedal Sports, Wasatch Your Back (Ryan Hamilton, USA) was able to at least equal them, tied for the week’s lead with 443 points. Second place went to NH hp (Mat, Israel) who was only 3 points short of the lead with 440 points. The final step on the podium belonged to BoogerBrigade (Mark LaLonde, USA), who managed a respectable 436 points for the week.
As mentioned before, Pedal Sports extended its lead in the overall standings, with a total of 5577 points over the year of racing. Second place again belongs to Peanut’s Peeps (Christine Vardaros, Belgium), who snuck into second place with 5146 points. Team Zoom (Jeff Hicks, USA), narrowly dropped to third place with 5141 points.
It’s been a while in coming, but finally the points totals have been finalized and our winners for the December competition can now be named! Unsurprisingly, it was Pedal Sports who took home the win with 1748 points. Team Zoom finished up the month in second with 1646 points, and it was 7hr (Mike Otting, USA) with 1528 points, who took home third place.