The UCI has considered changing the positions of the Cyclocross World Championships and the National Championships during the season so that there are more front row riders at the start. The general director of the UCI, Peter Van den Abeele, stated this in an interview with Sporza.

“After the World Cup in Hoogerheide last year, we debated it internally. We asked ourselves whether the World Cup and the national championships should move places on the calendar. An idea we quickly abandoned, because it would have a detrimental impact on the national federations” , confirms Van den Abeele.

“In addition, the national championships now serve as a reference for the World Cup. For example, if they are put on the calendar after the World Cup, the fight for the national title loses value. Then, all the runners would have to return to their country to compete in their national championship and then travel back to Belgium for the other qualifying events. This causes additional costs for foreign riders, who are precisely the ones who incur so many expenses during the year.”

Van den Abeele’s latest argument is that it would also have a negative impact on the international image of cyclocross. “The cross country season only lasts a few months and has been shortened in recent years. Not only because the big three start the season later, but also because the real cross country riders take a break more often during the season. They no longer race all crosses”.

With cross country stars such as Tom Pidcock and Wout van Aert set to skip the 2024 Cyclocross World Championships, there have been internal discussions within the UCI about the possibility of moving the event to early winter to attract more riders. stars. However, in the end it was decided not to do so.

Source: UCI, Sporza,