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World Cup #5 – Namur

[one_half]I’m feeling a bit repetitive but: what a day! A very tough course, very intense and exciting racing and proper cyclocross weather – what else might one want?

Well, one might want Pocket Wizards that actually work. After some fiddling with them this week, I’d thought they were fine but they weren’t which is very annoying, given that the whole set cost me about £600. Tomorrow I’ll give it another go, with fresh batteries and a fresh pair of eyes.[/one_half][one_half_last]Now, a very short lull comes, two days away from racing and working, two consecutive days of doing nothing. Well, that’s not exactly true, I’ll go for a bike ride and will have some friends over for dinner on Christmas eve, but the main goal is to do as little as possible. We’ll see how it goes but until then I would like to wish to all of you a very Happy Christmas – see you in Zolder![/one_half_last]

The Citadel of Namur is an impressive building. Someone said it last year that although it looks massive and impenetrable, it fell to the Germans in WWII within two days. Whether that’s true or not I don’t know as I’m not wiser after brief googling.

Katherine Compton, Nicole Duke and Meredith Miller were talking about Compton’s specially coated rims.

The most glittery helmet belonged to Ayako Toyooka

Marianne Vos and Katie Compton chat amicably

The field started climbing from the get got and the climb lasted for quite a while, even when they left the cobbled section.

As Marianne Vos mentioned in her post-race interview, she is yet to find her cross rhythm. You can see the marks of a crash in the first lap on her right shoulder.

Today’s women’s field was the strongest I’ve seen for a very long time. Even a top 10 place was incredibly hard to achieve, therefore, Helen Wyman’s 4th and Nikki Harris’ 5th place shows how much the Brits upped their game this season.

Katerina Nash seems to be on form and while she couldn't catch Compton, her second place wasn't really in danger.

Sanne van Paassen is either not in good form or she is just saving herself for the Worlds.

I didn’t see first the extra pair of brake levers on Eva Lechner’s handlebars, so I thought for a second that she was bombing down on this steep descent without braking…

Instead of the American national anthem, the organisers started to play the Czech one, maybe to honour Nash’s second place?

Brian Cookson waits behind the scenes to hand over the overall leader's white jersey

Sanne Cant’s jersey is being cleaned.

And another one for the ‘Spit’ series

Lars van der Haar concentrates prior to the race

Jeremy Powers had an awesome start, he was called up to the second line, yet half way into the first lap he was third. He later faded back but it definitely looked promising.

One of the muddy and treacherous descents.

Lucy Garner, Lars van der Haar’s girlfriend was waiting behind the finish line. I know it sounds girly but they look really cute together.

Jonathan Page’s 15th place means a spot on the US team at the Worlds in January

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