Zonhoven CX World Cup: favorites, times and how to watch it
The CX World Cup arrives in Zonhoven for the twelfth round of the calendar. The event will feature Van Aert and Van der Poel, but will also be marked by the absence of Pidcock. With three races to go, the fight for the overall is more important than ever with Sweek, Vanthourenhout and Iserbyt as contenders to win it.
Where and when to watch the 2023 CX Zonhoven World Cup
The race will take place next Sunday, January 8th. The price of the tickets is 15 euros or 18 euros if purchased on the day of the race.
Zonhoven CX World Cup Timetable
Sunday, January 8th
- Elite Women's race at 13:40
- Elite Men's race at 15:10
Where to watch the Zonhoven CX World Cup
The race can be followed on the Eurosport application and on GCN.
Van Aert and Van der Poel meet in their eighth duel of the season
The two best riders in the world on mud, Van Aert and Van der Poel, are the top favorites to win. Both already know what it's like to win here; the Dutchman has won three times and the Belgian once.
After almost two weeks since the last round of the CX World Cup, this Sunday will be the eighth particular duel between the two great figures of the discipline on a course characterized by large sandy slopes.
So far, Van Aert has beaten Van der Poel four times (Mol, Zolder, Diegem and Loenhout), while the Orange Beast has been able to beat his rival three times (Antwerp, Gavere and Herentals).
Van Aert's unfortunate flat tyre yesterday left us without a great finish at the Herentals X2O. Before Zonhoven they will still meet at the X2O in Koksijde on January 5th, as Van Aert will also race the Superprestige on Saturday.
The other magnificent, Pidcock, will not ride in Zonhoven. The decision has nothing to do with the crash he suffered in Baal and that deprived him of being at the start of Herentals yesterday. The British rider's calendar already included this break, which he will partly take advantage of to go on a training camp with his team in Mallorca.
With the official announcement that Pidcock will not be defending the rainbow at the World Championships, the Benidorm CX World Cup is likely to be the last time the three will face each other in the cyclocross season.
Sweek, Vanthourenhout and Iserbyt, in the fight for the general classification
The focus of the race should also be on these riders, who are fighting to take the overall lead. Sweek (308 points) arrives first and will try to increase his lead over his nearest rival, Vanthourenhout (287 points).
For his part, Iserbyt (249 points) is in need of points after two consecutive zeroes following the crash in Val di Sole and not participating in Gavere as a result of that fall.
Beyond these names, no one seems to be able to threaten to win the overall classification at the end of the season, as Van der Haar (226 points) and Vandeputte (191 points) are already too far away.
Van Empel and Pieterse, favorites in the women's race
Meanwhile, in the women's category, Van Empel and Pieterse will start as the main contenders to win the race on Sunday. In the overall standings, Van Empel (330 points) is one race ahead of Pieterse (290 points).
The Alpecin-Deceuninck rider has cut quite a few points off the leader of the standings in the last few events, especially after Van Empel did not score any points in the last two races due to her crash in Val di Sole.
In addition to these names, Van Anrooij, Van der Heijden and Alvarado will presumably be other riders fighting for the front positions.