Race Thread

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I think the first 'lap' was a starting loop, like in MTB, then 4 full laps.

I don't think it was particularly special course; another one that favoured power over technique, especially when it gets muddy. I'd like to see more variety in courses, especially more courses with climbing.
 
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Great head to head races for first and third.

I don't normally leave coverage running much after the finish, mainly because I don't understand Dutch at all, apart from a few cognates, but that interviewer using what I assume was the Dutch rendition of 'thriller' was one of the greatest sounds I have ever heard coming from a human.
 
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I haven't quite grasped why people and various media keep referring to Pidcock as one of the "big three" or "king of cross" seeing as he has only ever won 1 international elite CX race... Granted, he has some podium positions, but during last year's season he was not very close to MVDP on most occasions.

I am much more excited about how Toon Aerts, Lars Van der Haar, Iserby etc. will fare against MVDP when he comes back, as watching the races without MVDP significantly changes the dynamic of the races and makes it hard to evaluate the level. Will they be crushed or has the general level in CX improved during MVDP's absence from the throne?
We've seen an on form Pidcock, and he's better than anyone except Wout and MvdP. I do have high hopes for iserbyt, and think he's stepping up a bit. Aerts I would call best of the rest.

The one thing that I might say is that WvA and MvdP might be deemphasizing CX
Honsinger is the slowest starter. I know it’s been noted before but she was in about 20th place after the first turn after starting on the front row. I’ll bet she didn’t lose much time to Brand after the first full lap.
 
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I wonder if MvdP and Wout are just racing CX for the start money at this point in their career. It seems their focus is on road at the moment and making sure their CX season doesn't take away from their bigger goals on the road.
 
I wonder if MvdP and Wout are just racing CX for the start money at this point in their career. It seems their focus is on road at the moment and making sure their CX season doesn't take away from their bigger goals on the road.
I think they genuinely enjoy the challenge, it's certainly proven to be a good way to train, and there's probably an element of pride, having won the last xx WCs too...and it's nice to get paid to race for an hour instead of 4.

I dislike training so if you have relatively relaxed, low stakes races 2x a week it's more fun.
 
I think they genuinely enjoy the challenge, it's certainly proven to be a good way to train, and there's probably an element of pride, having won the last xx WCs too...and it's nice to get paid to race for an hour instead of 4.

I dislike training so if you have relatively relaxed, low stakes races 2x a week it's more fun.
They've proven it's a good way to train, and the commentary keeps telling up it's great for racing on the road; yet, where are all the rest of the top road riders? Haussler thinks it works, and loves it.

As for start money, is this really still a thing in 2021?
 
I wonder if MvdP and Wout are just racing CX for the start money at this point in their career. It seems their focus is on road at the moment and making sure their CX season doesn't take away from their bigger goals on the road.
I think Wout is now a full time road rider, who likes do do CX to supplement his road training; which is why he's not a definite for the Worlds. MvdP is slightly different (as is Pidcock) they have another discipline, as well as Road & CX.
 
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They've proven it's a good way to train, and the commentary keeps telling up it's great for racing on the road; yet, where are all the rest of the top road riders? Haussler thinks it works, and loves it.

As for start money, is this really still a thing in 2021?
Yes, Sven Nys was just recently complaining about the start money being doled out to WvA and MvdP while his riders, Lucinda Brand and Toon Aerts weren't being offered any start money.
 
Yes, I saw/read the piece in Wielerflits. I understood it in the 70s/80s. But in 2021, you have to pay start money, really? Not a good look. I'm completely against it, if they don't want to race, then fine, they don't race. The racing has been fine without them, they'll do a dozen races, and then go back to preparing for the road season, whilst the riders who do the full season will continue until the end.
 
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So the world cup at Antwerpen next sunday has been cancelled due to covid restrictions creating lack of atmosphere at the event, which follows no fans being allowed to attend Rucphen in 3 weeks time. I'd assume this is a different way of saying having a limit on attendence means the event is less economically viable, as I wouldn't say it's had an amazing atmosphere even when there was no restrictions. It doesn't seem like a very spectator friendly course or location and it was only packed when the belgian nationals were there.
 
They've proven it's a good way to train, and the commentary keeps telling up it's great for racing on the road; yet, where are all the rest of the top road riders? Haussler thinks it works, and loves it.

As for start money, is this really still a thing in 2021?
Well CX is hard and uncomfortable, but the only 5 road riders who also excel in CX are pretty damn good (MvdP, WvA, pidcock, Stybar, Merlier...did i miss someone? ) so maybe more should try it...
 
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I'd love to see more try it, but it's not going to happen; it isn't quite the benefit we're told it is. I presume most of the teams still think winter is a time for 'low intensity' training for riders - and CX isn't for the majority.

I'd like to see a few more top MTB riders having a go; but again it probably doesn't suit them; mainly flat, non technical courses. Neff is the only top 10 ranked rider (men & women) to do a World Cup this season. Though we may see the XCO World Champion around Christmas - and I don't mean Schurter.
 
We need to see that for one to complement road racing or MTB with cross, he needs to do almost 12 months of training and racing.

If someone is based around Belgium (like Stybar, MVP, WVA) or Switzerland (Lars Forster for example, who does regularly the EKZ races) it may be simpler because there's no need to be much time away from home. But for some other riders it means sacrificing rest periods to have more time away from their families and to travel around the world/europe during winter months. And after the cross season finishes, they are back to the beginning of the road race, training camps, altitude training, spring classics, etc.
 
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Although I also missed it, it appears there was English commentary on the link that includes both races and the studio chat, but not if you click for the women's race only (from GCN+ app). I can't imagine any reason why they would choose to do that, so it must be someone forgetting to throw a switch.
 
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