Kenneth Hansen, new Danish cyclocross champ, interviewed after race
This past weekend, the Danish Cyclocross Championships were held in Haderslev, Denmark, on a twisty, slightly muddy course which still had patches of slippery ice after heavy snowfall in December. The technical, slow course proved to be to the advantage of young local hero Kenneth Hansen, who beat last year’s champion, Joachim Parbo, and Tommy Nielsen.
On the second lap, 19 year-old Hansen rolled away from Tommy Nielsen and Joachim Parbo. The three were early established to be contenders for the medals. With lots of tight turns, the lightweight and agile Hansen proved a faster and better bike handler than his taller counterparts, Parbo and Nielsen.Former Champion Parbo made too many mistakes during the first part of the race. Halfway into the race he found his rhythm, passed Nielsen and came within 15 seconds of Hansen. But it was too little too late; Hansen held a steady hand on the handlebars and claimed the win.
During the 2010-2011 season Hansen has had improving results in the international U23 category and has dominated local Danish races. Hansen previously won the Danish Junior Cyclocross title in 2009.
In the women’s category, Nikoline Hansen was thrust from the champion’s throne by stellar MTB star Annika Langvad and Margriet Kloppenburg. Langvad has set a remarkable record by winning four Danish Championships in 2010 – in MTB, Road, Time Trial and Team Race, and now has also brought home the 2011 Cyclocross title. Langvad, however wishes to pursue a MTB career rather than venturing further into ’cross. In her absence, Kloppenburg and Nielsen seem certain to represent Denmark at the World Championships in St. Wendel.