Next Sunday, the cyclocross circus will pitch its tents on unexplored land. In the mountainous Val di Sole region of Italy, snow and ice should provide an amazing sight.
Notably, the Baloise Trek Lions are absent, with Sven Ness serving as manager. Nys is an advocate of cross internationalization and his team has previously gone to the United States. “It’s a conscious choice,” said Sven Ness. “Every year we have a break somewhere during the cyclocross season and it usually falls during this period.”
“This year, the only moment a breakout was possible without missing a couple of classification passes was the weekend in Val de Sol. Before Val de Sol on Sunday there will be a race in Essen and that’s one cross.”
With Lucinda Brand, Nys continues to be the leader in the World Cup, and Toon Aerts and Lars van der Haar do well in this ranking. “There are 16 ideas in the World Cup, so losing one motorcycle in the World Cup is not a disaster.”
“Snowcrosss is a great sight anyway, but the ride out there, the altitude I’ve ridden (about 1,200 metres) and with everything coming in, I think it’s the right choice.”
Val di Sole will be special, because cyclocross racing on snowy fields and slippery tracks is becoming a rarity.
There is a lot of snow in Val di Sol. Had it not been so, the organization would have used the snow cannon if necessary. Because the organization has a clear goal: to get the attention of the Olympic Committee. Cyclo-cross wants to be on the Winter Games programme.
Sven Ness is finding it unfortunate that his team cannot support such an Olympic ambition in Italy this weekend. He is a fervent defender of the Olympic Games in cyclocross.
“I have been a member of the cyclo-cross committee for ten years and our sport has already taken many strides. A lot has been invested in women’s cycling. As a result, men and women are more equal in bike crossovers than in road cycling.”
Nys mentions a number of arguments. “There are a lot of countries at the beginning of cycling, which is important to make an Olympic sport, moreover, cyclocross is much more a TV sport than a mountain bike. It is much cheaper to shoot and it is attractive. It fits perfectly with the format of the Games.”
“If our sport becomes an Olympic sport, the sky is the limit. Then all the federations will wake up and put money into cyclo-Cross again. Now that’s only in Flanders and the Netherlands. In countries like Switzerland or France you can ride a mountain bike (or Olympic) and put an end to it. So “.
But the chance of the cyclocross champions continuing to experience today is very slim. “Cycling should initially become a show sport. We will never see cyclocross at the Winter Games before 2030.”
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