The ball started rolling when Thibau Nys canceled the World Cup Cross in Dendermonde, but was scheduled to ride in Niel (Superprestige) the day before.
“At his young age we have to slow down a bit,” father Sven Nys argued.
But the fact that Thibau Nys chooses the Superprestige over the World Cup causes unrest at the UCI (which organizes the Cyclo-Cross World Cup together with Flanders Classics).
“If they see the cyclo-cross World Cup as a toy, then we have a problem,” sighed UCI CEO Peter Van den Abeele. “We have to look in the mirror and adjust the World Cup for next season.”
UCI president David Lappartient went one step further and is calling for a drastic change in the regulations.
“If a rider prefers to ride a national cross instead of a World Cup cyclocross, then he should no longer participate in the next World Cup crosses. And also not a World Cup,” is Lappartient’s proposal in an interview with DirectVelo.
A statement that has little understanding from cyclo-cross commentator Ruben Van Gucht.
“What Lappartient says is 2 or 3 bridges too far. It is unfair to pass the blame to a 21-year-old rider.”
“As long as you create the regulations yourself that riders can choose which crosses they ride, then you should not complain and open the umbrella.”
The UCI is considering a more compact World Cup with 10 instead of 14 crosses. “The starting point is that everyone will ride all the World Cup races,” says Van Gucht.
“But what are you going to do with Van der Poel and Van Aert? They will now compete on December 22. There are 6 weekends from then until the World Cup. I am not so sure that they will compete in the full World Cup. “
“If you then add the rule that Van Aert and Van der Poel are not allowed to participate in the next World Cup rounds if they miss a World Cup cross, then it defeats the purpose again.”
In any case, the UCI wants to discuss the sensitive issue as quickly as possible with other major players in the cyclo-cross world. To be continued.