Nine-time Tour de France stage winner and 2022 points classification champion Wout Van Aert has been confirmed for next month’s UCI cyclocross World Cup event, which will be held in Dublin on December 11th.
The Belgian professional won the world championships three times between 2016 and 2018 but has increasingly focused on road racing since then, becoming one of the best riders in the world. His victories include prestigious one-day events such as Milan-San Remo, the Amstel Gold Race and Strade Bianche, and he guided Jumbo-Visma team-mate Jonas Vingegaard to overall victory in this year’s Tour de France.
Despite his road focus, though, he has remained a very powerful cyclocross competitor, winning nine out of the 10 events he competed in last winter. His participation in the World Cup race is a huge boost to the event, which will be held at the Sport Ireland Campus in Blanchardstown.
Meanwhile, Irish track rider Emily Kay will compete with the Loughborough Lightning Cycling Team next season, adding a programme of road races and criteriums to her track competition.
“I’m excited to get back to racing on the road and crit scene,” she said. “After some time away I feel that Loughborough Lightning is the right place for me, with the world-class support and facilities they offer.”
Kay is a past winner at track cycling’s World Cup, and a medallist at the European Championships. She competed for Britain before declaring for Ireland in late 2019.