Tom Pidcock and Zoe Bäckstedt among British Cycling's cyclocross world championships contenders
Performance director looks to 'medal contenders across all categories' for some big results
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British Cycling has announced its riders for the 2022 UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships in Arkansas later this month.
Tom Pidcock will ride the elite men’s category, in a race that will be devoid of two of the sport’s most prolific riders: Wout van Aert or Mathieu van der Poel.
Van Aert, Van der Poel and Pidcock have repeatedly been referred to as the leading trio - and British Cycling has made it clear that the 22 year old will be aiming to beat his silver medal of 2020, and ‘riding with the aim of becoming Great Britain’s first elite cyclo-cross world champion’.
Pidcock became the first British man to win an elite cyclocross World Cup round when he was victorious in Rucphen in December, also winning in Hulst.
The elite men’s team will be completed by Thomas Mein, who now wears the national stripes having won the championships in Crawley, and Pidcock’s Ineos Grenadiers team mate Ben Turner.
In the junior women’s race, Zoe Bäckstedt will aim to add more world championships stripes to her collection, following her win on the road in 2021. Having secured wins at three of four rounds of the world cup, in Tabor, Namur and Dendermonde, as well as scooping up the European victory in November 2021, her chances look bright. Junior Women’s National Champion, Ella Maclean-Howell will represent alongside Bäckstedt.
Anna Kay will carry the GB flag for the elite women, Kay took third place to Harriet Harnden - who will represent the under 23 women - in Crawley earlier this month. Kay, 22, stood on the top spot of the podium on Sunday, at the Broughton Park round of the National Trophy Cyclocross Series. Harnden won the British National Championships in 2020, as well, the race being her debut on the elite women's circuit.
The under 23 men will be represented by Cameron Mason, who won his category at the Dendermonde world cup round on Boxing Day, also taking third in Tabor; alongside Mason will be Joseph Blackmore - Blackmore having taken third at the national championships.
The events take place over the weekend of Saturday, January 29 to Sunday, January 30, in Fayetteville, Arkansas.
Commenting on the line-up, British Cycling Performance Director, Stephen Park CBE, said: “There has never been a more exciting time to be a British cyclo-cross fan, and I’m delighted that we’re able to take such a strong team to Fayetteville, with medal contenders across all categories."
Great Britain Cycling Team for the UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships, Fayetteville, Arkansas:
Ella Maclean Howell
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Michelle Arthurs-Brennan is a traditional journalist by trade, having begun her career working for a local newspaper, where highlights included interviewing a very irate Freddie Star (and an even more irate theatre owner), as well as 'the one about the stolen chickens'.
Previous to joining the Cycling Weekly team, Michelle was Editor at Total Women's Cycling. She joined CW as an 'SEO Analyst', but couldn't keep her nose out of journalism and in the spreadsheets, eventually taking on the role of Tech Editor before her latest appointment as Digital Editor.
Michelle is a road racer who also enjoys track riding and the occasional time trial, though dabbles in off-road riding too (either on a mountain bike, or a 'gravel bike'). She is passionate about supporting grassroots women's racing and founded the women's road race team 1904rt.
Michelle is on maternity leave from July 8 2022, until April 2023.
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