A bit of everything from the cyclocross world this week, including some transfer news, a road result and a bevy of mountain bike results from the week past!
After Dominating as Juniors, Newly Minted Espoirs Find New Teams
A couple of the best Juniors in the cyclocross world have found new homes for the coming season, as Tijmen Eising and Lars Van der Haar, who both rode for Revor last year, will suit up in different colors in 2009. Eising, who enjoyed a wildly successful final year as a junior, which included a win at the World Cyclocross Championships, will trade the Revor stip in for that of Sunweb-Projob, who continue to build one of the most powerful cyclocross programs in the land. Eising signed a contract that will run two years, giving him time to grow into the U23 mold.
Van der Haar, who also rode for Revor in 2008-2009, will join the likes of Tom Van den Bosch and Eddy Van IJzendoorn who have joined up with the AA Drinks team for 2009. Van der Haar capped his season off in fine form, taking home fifth in the Junior World Championships, and will now get the chance to mature under the watchful eye of Richard Groenendaal.
Neils Albert Scores 5th Victory of the Season
World Cyclocross Champion Niels Albert took home his fifth victory of the season, adding to the incredible results that Cyclocross World Champs have been scoring this season (see: Marianne Vos). Albert’s latest triumph came in the first stage of the Mi-Aout Bretonne, which covered the roads between Plouha and Pontrieux in the Brittany region of France. Albert’s victory in the 165 kilometer long first stage came ahead of France’s Julien Bérard and Norway’s Frederik Wilmann. The race has a total of four stages, and considering Albert’s current form, he will surely be a factor in the rest of the remaining kilometers.
Kabush Continues MTB Dominance, Wells Not Far Behind
The US ProXC Tour hit its fifth stop this past weekend in Vermont, as the nation’s best riders hit the slopes of Mount Snow. Fresh off a few notable results in the World Cup circuit, Canada’s Geoff Kabush showed why he was able to add a World Cup win to his palmares by taking home the Elite Men’s cross country event with relative ease. Kabush held off Sid Taberlay by 1:11 and held Todd Wells at bay to the tune of 2:01. Kabush, Wells and Taberlay had been together in the leading group until the final time up the day’s last climb, where Kabush was first able to drop Wells, and finally Taberlay en route to another commanding win. Barry Wicks had a rebound day of sorts, finishing up in 9th place, while Carl Decker crossed the line in 11th. In a disappointing day, Adam Craig could only manage 21st.
Kabush was once again a man on a mission when the men turned to the Short Track event, where he was able to again best Todd Wells, who finished second, and Adam Craig who came back from his disappointing Cross Country performance to finish third in the Short Track. Wells was one of the main protagonists on the day, spending a good chunk of time at the front of the race, but it was Kabush’s final laps that sealed his victory, coming back from a handful of places back to overtake and gap the fading Wells. Craig was victim to a poor start, and had to march up through the pack to grab his third place. Ryan Trebon played a big role in the early part of the race, but paid the price for his efforts, and was the victim of a crash that relegated him to 14th place on the day. Carl Decker was 5th place, next best behind Craig, followed by Jeremy Powers who traded in the road bike for some fat tires and finished 10th. Just behind his ‘cross rival was Barry Wicks in 11th.
Georgia Gould Top Cyclocross Woman at Mount Snow
The women’s race was another display of Luna’s Mountain Bike Prowess, as team leader Catherine Pendrel took home another cross country victory, helped to the win by teammates Georgia Gould and Katerina Nash. Nash suffered an unfortunate flat tire early in the race, and was forced to run her bike to one of the course’s aid stations, but would recover impressively to snag seventh place on the day. Gould would finish up in 4th after riding in support of Pendrel. Maureen Bruno Roy was the last woman on the lead lap, filling the 20th position on the results sheet.
Eager to make up for her technical problems in the cross country, Katerina Nash took home a solid win on day two’s Short Track course, besting Heather Irminger and Willow Koerber. Much of the day’s attacking was done by Nash’s teammate Catherine Pendrel, who even managed to get a sizeable gap that looked as if it would be enough for her to grab her second win in as many days. A spectacular crash would relegate Pendrel to 17th on the day, leaving Katerina Nash to fight it out with Koerber and Irminger at the front of the race. Nash’s ability to use the chase efforts of the Gary Fisher teammates of Koerber and Irminger to her advantage, Nash put in an attack to finish off the two adversaries. Her attack worked, giving her enough of a cushion to take home the victory. Maureen Bruno Roy moved up a few spots from her day one effort, with a strong 11th place finish.
Liz Hatch to Give Cyclocross a Try
The woman who got Maxim magazine’s attention on cycling is planning on giving cyclocross a whirl this season, on a yet-to-be-announced team. Will Liz Hatch help Maxim grow the sport of cyclocross?
Wondering what your favorite mudders have been up to? Doing your homework so you can win Cyclocross Magazine’s fantasy cyclocross league next season? We’ve got you covered with our new, weekly report on your favorite top ‘crossers. Each week Jake Sisson will bring you the latest news, gossip, and maybe even a tweet or two on the pro scene. This is installment #20. Installment #19 is here. Got something worth reporting? Let us know!