“Cyclocross World Champion Tom Pidcock has confirmed that we will compete at the UCI Cyclocross World Cup Dublin stage on December 11th. The British rider has confirmed he'll take the start line of the ninth stage of the competition, the first-ever stage of the Cyclocross World Cup to be hosted on Irish soil,” Cycling Ireland said.
However, Pidcock’s coaches and team have remained quiet on the full details of his cyclocross calendar, and have not confirmed directly that he will ride in Dublin.
Cycling Weekly understands that the British rider’s full cyclocross programme will instead develop on a week-by-week basis as the season continues, with Pidcock likely to ride between 10 and 12 cyclocross races this winter.
It's not overly unusual for pro riders to enter races and decide later if they'll actually ride them and that seems to be what's happening in this instance. Though it is somewhat unusual for the race promoter to put out a statement about a rider participating in their race without a good level of certainty that they will.
WORLDS PARTICIPATION STILL UNKNOWN
Even the British riders participation in the biggest cyclocross race on the calendar remains up in the air.
Over recent weeks Pidcock has repeatedly stated that his main aim for the coming months is being in the best shape possible for the spring classics. With that in mind, his participation in the 2023 cyclocross world championships in Hoogerheide, the Netherlands is still undecided.
The 23-year-old recently told Het Nieuwsblad that he still couldn’t answer the question as to whether he would ride the worlds yet, as he has his sights firmly set on being in good shape ready for the spring classics.
"I can't answer that yet," Pidcock said. "The World Championship is very late this time, isn't it? If you peak for this Championship and then you have to prepare for the Classics…"
"The road season is so much more important to me. That's how I feel this year too," he added.
"In 2023 I especially want to perform consistently in those spring Monuments. If I succeed, the results will follow. If you're up front with everything, you get more options.
"Last year I did play an important role in the victories of the team. Those victories lifted me a little bit, even if things didn't go the way I wanted for myself. Compared to Jumbo-Visma and Quick-Step, we have a young team, with less experience, but we can race. Let the great powers fight it out among themselves, we will attack them."
The Belgian rider has also said that he plans to ride the world championships in 2023.
In an interview with Het Laatse Nieuws, Van Aert said that with the race being held in Hoogerheide, the Netherlands, participating made sense.
"I like to show my ambitions. I'm going to do that now. The World Championship is close to home, on a course where I became world champion in the U23s. The World Championship is my only big goal of the winter," Van Aert said.
With Van Aert set to race in Dublin, if Pidcock does indeed appear at the race then it should make for an enthralling duel between the two riders in the mud.
But don't be too disappointed if Pidcock doesn't turn up after all.
Thank you for reading 20 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access
Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription
Join now for unlimited access
Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1