This week we preview all the stages of the 2017 Giro Rosa, from the Team Time Trial all the way through to the climb of Mount Vesuvius. There’s stages to suit the sprinters, the puncheurs, the roleurs and the climbers. Who is suited to each stage? Which teams have the strongest rosters? Who are the riders to watch? How is the race likely to unfold? We answer all of these questions and more. We even unlock the age-old secret of how to interpret the race book (It’s Idiosyncratic, Unless It’s the Exact Opposite). (50.05 MIN / 45.86 MB)
The National Cyclocross Championships have moved to January, and it was a fantastic weekend for live women’s cycling, with the Dutch Champs having the women as the Main Event, so we could flip from live Belgium to live Netherlands women, before heading to the USA. Such an amazing luxurious day of race after race!
I’ve said it a lot this season, but wow, things have changed so much, so quickly, in terms of cyclocross broadcasting for women. Just a few years ago, I felt lucky to see highlights of the women’s World Champs, and 5 minutes of a race was a luxury, but now I can watch all three major series without going near a dodgy stream – AND most races on my actual TV too! CX is now the cycling discipline that is most accessible, in terms of watching women’s racing, and everyone who’s worked on that should be so proud, especially the people at Sporza. It’s glorious!
Of course there are still some countries that could do with improvement, but this weekend demonstrates why – and that it’s completely possible to provide more than 2 minutes highlights. Strap in for some great videos, photos and media – and of course, if there are any that I’ve missed, please do tell me, in the comments or on twitter, and I’ll edit them in.
As always, it’s the Dutch Cyclocross Championships that has the biggest field in terms of most riders who could win, with a current and former World Champion lining up. But from the first lap, there was one rider head-and-shoulders above the rest…
(If anyone can find the full replay anywhere, please do let me know – I love that it was all live!)
This year’s Road Cycling National Champs weekend were the usual mix of predictable and completely un-guessable, which I love. Check out the race report collection on Ella Cycling Tips – and here’s a little collection of videos and results – and of course, if you have more that I’ve missed, please do let me know, either in the comments or on twitter, and I’ll edit them in. In alphabetical order…
Video highlights on Sporza – and this made me grin:
The Road Race was won by Annie Foreman-Mackey
This week Sarah and Dan swear not to talk politics (it’s too depressing) but they do tackle the wealth of national championships results that occurred over the weekend. There’s a lot of really interesting results from Europe, Asia and around the world. We also dig deep into a preview of the Giro Rosa and who will (and won’t) be there, and what will make the race interesting. One thing we know is that it’s going to be super exciting and interesting! (1:13:24 MIN / 67.21 MB)
Things we talked about
Sarah’s video collection from the 2016 National Road Championships weekend.
Marcos Marín, aka @MiCiclismo, is one of the fantastic women’s cycling internet detectives, finding fantastic content on twitter, and writing about the sport, and especially Spanish cycling, on El Pelotón. He very kindly wrote a guest post to tell us how the 2016 Spanish Cyclocross Championships unfolded. Make sure you follow him!
Fifth title for Aida Nuño at the Spanish CX Championships
Photo © RFEC, via El Pelotón
Her name is well-known by anyone who follows the international cyclo-cross season. In 2014, supported by the MMR-Spiuk CX Team, she started racing the whole UCI World Cup calendar and got two top-15 places, in Valkenburg and Milton-Keynes. So far this season, apart from her two UCI victories in two C2 races in Spain, her best result had been the 12th place at the Namur World Cup. She is, of course, Aida Nuño, and this morning she would chase her fifth Spanish elite National Championship. And she got it after an impressive, solo win, in which she took the lead of the race as soon as it started.
All the female riders competed at the same race, including the elite, under-23, junior and youth categories, but with separate starts. Among the elites, Aida Nuño attacked in the first lap and only two riders could follow her pace: Alicia and Lucía González. After a lap some seconds behind her little sister, Lucía joined Alicia by the beginning of the second lap, but when that happened, Aida Nuño already had 17 seconds on the pair.
There was no further story to tell, as Nuño kept increasing her gap on Lucía González, who had left Alicia behind. Eventually, the silver medal was for Lucía and the bronze for Alicia, who also got a red-and-yellow jersey as she was the first under-23 rider of the day. Alba Teruel and Eider Merino completed the under-23 podium.
“I knew I was strong for this race but as I’ve been racing cyclo-cross for many years, I know anything can happen on a race day. But everything has turned out well, opening a gap on the first lap,” Nuño said in the Spanish Federation’s report after her fifth title.
In the junior category we could see a nice struggle between two riders: a pure CX rider, the Galician Irene Trabazo, who has been competing in Belgium and the Netherlands over the Christmas period; and a mountain biker, the Catalan Magda Duran, who often races in the UCI Junior Series XCO races. Both Irene and Magda were together all the race, but in the last lap the rider from Catalonia attacked and the Galician was not able to follow her pace due to a crash. Now Magda Duran is the current Spanish junior champion in cross country and cyclo-cross. The bronze medal went to Sofía Rodríguez.
“The circuit was very similar to MTB races, so it was great for my strengths. Irene [Trabazo] had a crash and that’s when I took advantage of the situation and I attacked. This victory is even more special than my MTB victories, because I wasn’t thinking in winning the Championship, so it’s been a surprise for me,” said Duran.
Meanwhile, in the youth category (15-16 years old), the Basque team achieved a ‘1-2’ in the podium thanks to Luisa Ibarrola’s solo victory and Saioa Gil’s silver medal — who wasn’t able to repeat the victory she got last year. Sara Yusto, from Castile and León, got the bronze.
More photos from the race, and report in Spanish, on El Pelotón
January is such an important month for cyclocross riders, and after the hard-racing start to the year, we’re onto the 2016 National Cyclocross Championships. It’s a busy weekend, and we get to watch some of the races live – and for those that don’t have live streams, I’ll tell you how to follow them. The TL;DR is all the elite races are on Sunday 10th January (bar Spain, which you can watch on Saturday, along with French juniors), and you can probably find streams here & here on the day, but I’ve got more details, and I’m going to start with the streams first.
The Belgian CX Champs are traditionally the most competitive of all the Nationals, and some would argue, on the men’s side they’re harder to win that World Champs. This year the races are taking place on the Krawatencross course, which is all around a lake, with some forest sections, hard climbs and descents, and the need for clever cornering skills. Have a look:
Best of all? We’ll be able to watch the women’s and men’s elite races live on Sunday 10th January.
Sporza is streaming these, so Belgians can watch on tv or via the Sporza livestream here, while there will be streams in the usual places. The stream starts with the women’s race at 13:30 Euro CET (12:30pm UK GMT; 7:30am N American EST; 11:30pm Aussie AEDT) and then on to the men at 15:00 CET. And if you can’t watch live, you can follow it on twitter with the #BKVeldrijden hashtag. More information on the race website, including the course map and startlist. Sanne Cant has to start as the favourite, but Ellen van Loy and Jolien Verschueren will make it hard for her, with Femke van der Driessche as the dark horse.
USA racing is always exciting, because they really lead the way at providing coverage when the big tv stations don’t, and USA Cycling is once more giving us a fabulous treat, streaming on Sunday 10th from 11:00am USA EST (4pm UK GMT, 17:00 Euro CET, 3am Aussie AEDT) which, from the programme, will be the women’s and men’s u23, and then the elite women from 2:30pm EST (7:30pm GMT, 20:30 CET, 6:30am AEDT) and the elite men from 3:40 CET. The stream will be hosted on Cyclocross Magazine, who have a lot of coverage on their portal.
This year’s Australian Road Racing started with a bang on New Year’s Day with the Bay Crits and their Summer of Cycling continues with the National Road Cycling Championships. We can watch the road races, and I’ll tell you how to follow the other races live – but forgive me if the information’s complicated, it’s timezones!
We’re in Ballarat as usual, and the schedule, with links to the courses, startlists and so much more, is here,. Ballarat is in Victoria, and in the AEDT timezone, so 10 hours ahead of European CET, 11 hours ahead of UK GMT, and 16 hours ahead of North American EST, so double check dates if you’re not in Aus.
- Criterium Championships, Wednesday 6th, (it’s a hilly course with some nasty corners, so this is for the TOUGH Crit riders) – the women start at 5:30pm AEDT (07:30 CET, 6:30am GMT, 1:30am EST). Live results as they happen, and there will be highlights on the Nine Network and FOXSPORTS at some time. Find out about the top crit riders with the videos and media from the Bay Crits.
- Individual Time Trials, Thursday 7th – the u23 and elite women start at 12:30pm AEDT (02:30 CET, 1:30am GMT, 8:30pm Wednesday EST). Startlists with timings and live results as they happen.
- Elite Road Races, Sunday 10th – the women start at 08:00 AEDT (Saturday at 22:00 CET, 9:00pm GMT, 4:00pm EST). Startlist and live results as they happen.