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Preview: 2024 Men's Cyclocross Championship – Four main contenders, no favorite for the tricolor

Preview: 2024 Men's Cyclocross Championship – Four main contenders, no favorite for the tricolor

Saturday, January 13, 2024 at 8:00 am

The Cyclo-Cross Championships in Meulebeke promise to be the most exciting championship in years. The outcome of a national title fight has rarely been more difficult to predict. Michael Vanthornhout, Thibaut Ness, Lorenz Swick or Elie Iserbyt? Cycling Looking forward.


Latest winners Science is Men's Cyclocross Championship
2023: Science isMichael Vanthornhout
2022: Science isWoot Fan Art
2021: Science isWoot Fan Art
2020: Science isLorenz Swick
2019: Science iston aerts
2018: Science isWoot Fan Art
2017: Science isWoot Fan Art
2016: Science isWoot Fan Art
2015: Science is Class Vantournot
2014: Science isSven Ness

last year

Cyclocross Championships Science is Lucerin
The result is men

1. Science isMichael Vanthornhout (Pauls-Bingol Sauces)
2. Science isLawrence Swick (Krilan-Frestads) in second
3. Science isThibaut Ness (Balways Trek Lions) with a time of 1:42 seconds
4. Science isElie Izerbit (Pauls Sosin-Bingol) at 2 min 29
5. Science isTry Kuipers in 2m 39s


In 2021, Wout van Aert and San Cant became Belgian Champions in the West Flemish Municipality. It was in a typical prairie meadow, something we will also see this year. “The route is largely the same. Compared to the previous edition of the Cross (not BC, ed.) we have made some modifications. We have chosen, among other things, to widen the route a little more. ” “This is mainly about the audience.”

“A sandbox and a pass over the stiles have also been added. But overall it remains the same cross. Meulebeke is and remains a fast and technical cross. The last weeks were of course very muddy, but that has changed again. The surface will be mainly difficult this weekend. There will be a number of “Of the lanes, it is a little heavier than usual, but in principle we will not see a slow intersection.”

The two sandboxes, one of which is new, are 40 meters long. “We have chosen not to put the tracks in the sandbox. Before and after each intersection, we will remove all the existing tracks, so that the sandboxes are not easy to access. So I expect the decision will be made at the latest in the second sandbox.

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“After this sandbox, there is also a long strip without too many bends, which can make a difference. This is followed by the right-angled bridge and the walkway on the sloped side. Next they run on the athletics track, where they make a half turn. After the bend on the piste, “There is still about 100 meters of line still on the piste. If there are still riders together, it will be a strange race.”

However, Verwelst does not expect the latter scenario. There are enough points in the course to make a difference, like sandboxing for example. Who provides it in the course? “I know Eli Iserbyt is looking forward to BC this tournament, but Michael Vanthornhout will also be able to do well.”

Program and information

The program is Sunday, January 14, 2024
10am: New arrivals, Benin
11am: New sophomores, guys
1:45 PM: Promises, guys
3.15 pm: Elite men

Domain Ter Borcht, Ingelmunstersesteenweg 11, Meulebeke

general information
the tickets For Sunday it costs 20 euros. Children up to 12 years old can enter for free.

Practical information
Site organization


The nice thing about BK cyclo-cross is that there is no real waiting preferred. About two weeks ago, the man in waiting had always been Elie Izerbyt, but illness had seriously hampered his health. And so we can look forward to a title battle with four contenders we place on roughly equal footing.

Has Isserbet recovered from the disease? – Photo: Cor Vos

Let's start with Elie Esserbet yourself. He suffered a shock about two weeks ago when he had to leave racing sick at the Holst cross-country race and shortly thereafter ended up in a hospital emergency room. After a necessary rest, a somewhat unsettled Iserbyt returned to action at the World Cup in Sonhoven on Sunday. His ambitions were once again fueled by sixth place. “I want to do my best, but I'm definitely not going to start as favourite. I didn't feel good enough for that. Miracles can happen in a week, that's what I hope for,” Iserbit said to the camera after the cross in Sonhofen. Honestly? Iserbit deserves Such a miracle, after his fantastic half of the season.

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The second favorite number also comes from the Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal camp. Michael Vanthornhout He has to do it the same way as Klaas Vantornot did it twice for the same team. Remain largely in the background over Christmas, then peak perfectly towards that day. Of course, Vanthornhout did not do this on purpose: injury and illness hampered his season. But it's a fact: on tournament day, the defending champion can always pull it off a little more than some competitors. Earlier this season he showed that again at the European Championships in Bonchateau. The form is there, otherwise you wouldn't win at Gullegem.

Same story with Lorenz Swick. The Crelan-Corendon rider is far from doing poorly on his courses, but you can't talk about a real high level. At Zonhoven we saw signs of a better Sweeck for the first time in a long time, which may indicate that things will be turning around at just the right time for the rider from Schriek. “It didn't work out. “It started out bad and was good a few times, but never consistent. We are now looking for confirmation that things are improving. “Koksijde was not bad, but today I confirm that I am moving in the right direction,” he said, sounding optimistic after the rehearsal in Sonhofen.

Youngster Thibaut Ness had a bad day at Koksijde – Image: Cor Vos

With the number four being preferred Tibau Nice. The term “ups and downs” was invented for him. Young Nys can easily win by force majeure, but he can also easily leave the race with bad legs. However, there is a problem in the form of the Baloise Trek Lions mustache. “But everything has to be okay for Thibaut,” says Father Sven. He's proven he can win, but that was a while ago. On the other hand, he showed in Dejem and Baal that he is very close to the high level. If this level is touched, then there are possibilities.” Nice is primarily aiming for the podium, but for us he is definitely a contender for the title.

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Realistically, one of these four will win on Sunday in Meulebeke. But also Niels Vandeput eager. In international cross-country races he is a constant player between 5th and 10th, but in BK he automatically moves up a few places. The same applies to the promised former world champion Joran and Sur, which has become increasingly regular in its performance. They are both very technical riders. You can't say the same about Ton Vandebosch or road cyclists Gianni Vermeersch and Quentin Hermans, but they won't fall far from the podium either.

Favorites according to WielerFlits
*** Michael Vanthornhout
** Elie Isserbet, Lawrence Swick
* Thibaut Ness, Nils Vandepute, Goran Wisseur

List of participants

Weather and TV

No more freezing temperatures in Moellebeek over the weekend, but it won't get too warm. The temperature will rise to 4 degrees Celsius, and there is also a 55% chance of limited rain. The wind blows at 3 Beaufort from the west.

Sporza The Men's Promises and Men's Toasts will be broadcast from 1:30 p.m.