UCI Cyclocross World Cup Round 2 – Tabor – Ian Field Reports On His 18th Place
Having not gone to America to start the season this year to concentrate on the biggest races in the World here in Europe my World ranking and therefore start position had taken a hammering. I had dropped from 33rd to 50th in the ranking update after the opening World Cup. This meant a 5th row start.
In the past I have used the poor gridding as an excuse to a average or poor ride however the reality is if you have good legs you can ride through, yes you might expend a lot more energy getting to the same position after the opening few laps but there are no excuses for a poor result.
Travel hadn’t been the smoothest with the journey taking a couple of hours more than planned due to huge delays around Frankfurt which normally wouldn’t be a problem but when the journey is already 1100km this begins to hurt. I eventually arrived Friday and had a good time on the course during practice finding a really good rhythm and tub setup.
Race day came and we were greeted with warm conditions but the course was still really slippy in places and even muddy on the bottom half of the course. Its a real fitness test of a course and I knew my legs were good from the previous weeks ride. The plan was to remain calm over the first lap and let people fight for position and waste energy for later in the race. My 2nd and 3rd laps were good, I moved through rapidly and eventually got from late twenties on the opening lap to the group racing for 15th. Game on.
I settled into the group and tried to just hang in the wheels and hope I had something left for the finale. Mid race there was a weird moment when Nys crashed and all of a sudden was on the head of our group. I was just about to prepare myself for the hottest laps of my life when I realised the pace had slowed. One by one we made our way past never to see the one of the greatest of all time again.
Come the final two laps I thought I would be able to fight for the 14th position we were now racing for but it wasn’t to be, the non sprinters of the group wound the pace up from 2 to go and our group set some of the fastest lap times of the race towards the end. I got slightly held up jumping round a dropping rider and that was that the wheels were lost and I came in for 18th place. Tired and happy I had got everything out.
This result has moved me up to 16th overall in the World Cup. The next round is nearly a month away now in the sand dunes of Koksijde. I really want to go well there with so many Brits normally making the trip every year, another top 20 there would be really special, with a little part of me hoping for something really special!!
Next up though is the Koppenberg Cross this Friday followed by the Superprestige in Zonhoven Sunday.