Report: 2011 UCI Cyclo-Cross World Championships
Day Two - Senior Men and Women
Sankt Wendel, Germany - January 29-30 2011 | Event Home
WOMEN | Result
Helen Wyman finished just outside of the top ten at the 2011 UCI Cyclo-Cross World Championships in Sankt Wendel, as part of a British team that recorded two top-twenty performances despite troubles on a frozen and testing 2.8km loop.
The opening lap saw all British riders miss a confused split which eventually created a lead group of eight riders entering lap two. Wyman was positioned just a little too far from the action and missed this group, instead having to chase alongside Sabine Spitz, Pavla Havlikova, Linda Van Rijen, Sabrina Schweizer and Sanne Cant.
Further back, Nikki Harris miscued on a bank, leaving another gap in the field and more misfortune was to follow; just as Harris was getting back into the action, a puncture and an unscheduled stop to the pits meant a lap retaking each position.
For a time, Harris and Gabby Day rode around each other, closing down individual riders who had been shelled from the small groups ahead, Day eventually succumbing to Harris' wheel and finishing in 23rd. It was a tough call for Day, who had been riding to secure 20th place, some eight seconds up the road.
In the battle for the top ten, Wyman began to lose contact on lap three, suffering a slight dip and riding alone and for what seemed like a long time was neither chasing the top ten nor holding off the teens.
That changed later in the race as four riders; including Nikki Harris began to close, but effectively Wyman had 12th secured, and Harris was left wondering what could have been with a better start and no pit stop.
RACE FOR THE RAINBOW
Marianne Vos slipped away from Katie Compton in a thrilling final lap to retain her rainbow jersey and the title of World Champion.
Riding againt the race favourite and Katerina nash, Vos bought a group of three into the final circuit but confidently upped her game to a level others simply couldn't match.
Early in the race home favourite Hanka Kupfernagel paid for taking it to the competiton, the last rider to slip from an initial lead group of eight, also containing Jasmin Achermann, Sanne Van Passen, Christel Ferrier Bruneau and Pauline Ferrant Prevot.
MEN | Result
British riders were frozen out of competition in St. Wendel, as the biggest race of the weekend hit the track. As parts of the track thawed, the action heated up and sixty riders burst onto the German hillside.
Leading the British charge early on was Ian Field, who looked in good shape. Riding through the first sections in the mid teens and crossing the line on lap one in the early-twenties, Field composed himself well to move through the pack and at one stage seemed to have the measure of the occasion.
Several ferocious changes of pace ripped the mid-field to pieces however, and as mountain bike World Champion Jose Hermida moved into top gear, others were on the limiter.
Unfortunately, British Champion Paul Oldham was one of these riders, his race ending in 44th, after he was pulled out of the race with five laps to go (riders are removed from the race by commisaires when they are 80% of a lap down on the front of the race, clearing the way for the leaders to proceed without being hindered by having to lap riders). Jody Crawforth faired slightly better, moving toward the top thirty at times, but would eventually be pulled with four laps to go in 38th.
Ian Field was top Brit, with 35th position, paying for two punctures and a pace that increased beyond the means of most and underlined by the winning margin and just thirty finishing riders.
RACE FOR THE RAINBOW
Zdenek Sybar kept his loyal fanbase happy at the World Championships by retaining his title in St Wendel. Riding in a class of his own with Sven Nys, the pair quickly moved away from a large group and dominated the race.
Stybar's decisive move came at the top of the course. Nys turned to look at his rival as the halfway point of the race was reached, and Stybar's reaction was to put down an unmatched attack. Nys steadied himself over the next lap, but it was not enough.
A long wait followed for the final medal of the Championships and it was the conclusion of a long battle between home favourite Philip Walslaben, Francis Mourey and Kevin Pauwels. Klass Vantournout allowd countryman Pauwels to get the slip, claiming a second position on the podium for Belgium, while home fans were left with Walsalben's fifth placed finish.