Rumors and Rumblings is back and this edition is stuffed to the gills with news on some of your favorite Euro cyclocrossers. Remember bike racing? It’s happening in Europe and cyclocrossers are ready.
Wout van Aert Can’t Stop Winning
What can’t Wout van Aert do?
🏆 🇧🇪 @WoutvanAert s’impose !
🏆 🇧🇪 @WoutvanAert claims the win!#Dauphiné pic.twitter.com/XgRM2E0OaT
— Critérium du Dauphiné (@dauphine) August 12, 2020
We’re at a loss of words to describe the Jumbo Visma star’s restart of the road season. Three wins and third place in four starts. Wow Wout. What an incredible ten days for the cyclocross racer.
This last victory came in the opening stage of the Criterium du Dauphine.
We hope we can continue to claim him as one of our own.
Annemarie Worst Gives Update on Injury
Last we heard of Annemarie Worst, she was stuck in a hospital following her devastating crash at the Proffix Swiss Bike Cup. Although she didn’t break any bones, she suffered a tendon injury and had to undergo surgery.
Now, two weeks later, she has given us an update through Facebook, with her location curiously listed as in Singapore. She is currently recuperating from her injury and although she hasn’t fully recovered, she’s now able to ride on the trainer again.
Tim Merlier Takes Podium in Stage Two of the Czech Tour
By now, the entire cyclocross community knows about Wout van Aert’s triple podium streak—first in the Strada Bianche, then in the Milano Torino and finally in the Milamo—San Remo.
However, let’s not forget about some of our other cyclocross stars’ accomplishments, namely Tim Merlier’s (Alpecin-Fenix) podium in stage two of the Czech Tour.
The race ended in a sprint finish with Merlier coming out second, only losing to Jordi Meeus (SEG Racing Academy). Wherever we look, there is a cyclocrosser on a podium it seems.
Van der Poel Lands a Podium at Gran Piemonte
While last year’s spring classics phenom Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix) may not yet have returned to his dominant form, he’s suffered from flat tires, landed three top 15s and was the fifth to crest the famed Poggio is Milan San Remo. The results were disappointing for fans, but especially for MVDP himself.
Now the three-time cyclocross world champ is back on the podium, finishing third behind Jumbo Visma’s George Bennett at the Gran Piemonte.
(The Other) Van der Poel Earns Trifecta, Alpecin-Fenix Gets Five-Win Streak at Ronde van Vlaams Brabant
This has been a great week for Alpecin-Fenix. Merlier wasn’t the only member to take a podium. David van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix) took three victories in the Ronde van Vlaams Brabant with Alpecin-Fenix taking all five stages.
The victory was fourth in a row for Alpecin-Fenix. We can’t wait to see how they fare in this year’s cyclocross season.
Tom Pidcock: CX or XC?
In the realm of mountain biking, we saw Tom Pidcock taking a podium day two of the French Cup MTB.
The British racer found his roots in cyclocross but has also ventured in road racing and cyclocross. Now, he’s leaping into the realm of mountain biking, and is calling himself a rookie in this discipline.
Pidcock took the U23 win on Day Two of the French Cup MTB. This would’ve been a feat on its own, as Pidcock is one of our fellow cyclocross racers, but any mountain biker winning a race on their second day deserves lots of praise.
We look forward to seeing Pidcock race up the learning curve in his new career in mountain biking!
Former Cyclocross Star Faces Near-Death Experience
Niels Albert is a name familiar to most long-time cyclocross fans. The ex-cyclocross racer was forced to quit cycling after being diagnosed with cardiac arrhythmias. In addition, he had a defibrillator installed in his chest.
On a recent ride, Albert’s heart suddenly stopped while he was on a ride. Fortunately, his defibrillator went off, saving his life.
“With one hand I made a slapping gesture, with the other I held my handlebars. And then I got the feeling that I was riding my bike on an embroidery, a firm knock, while the road was still flat,” he said [translated], according to Nieuwsblad.be. “Not much later I was lying on the grass side with a racing bike.”
For those who wish to learn more about Niels Albert, we covered his career a few years ago.
Belgian champ and three-time world champ Sanne Cant is getting ready for the cyclocross season with some mountain bike racing and road racing.
The champ is aiming to take a shot at the European Road Race championships later this August.
Discover our @BELCyclingTeam for the Elite road races at the UEC European Road Championships in Plouay 🇫🇷 | https://t.co/aa4YTH1n0w#EuroRoad20 pic.twitter.com/GqpjD3mgVm
— Belgian Cycling Team (@BELCyclingTeam) August 10, 2020
Stay tuned for more Rumors and Rumblings!