The UCI unveiled 14 of 16 events on the 2021-2022 World Cup schedule for cyclo-cross on Thursday, with the United States hosting the first three events of the season in October. Belgium will hold the most World Cup races with six, France and the Netherlands will each hold two events and the Tabor race will return to the Czech Republic.
Races in Fayetteville, Arkansas and Flamanville, France make inaugural appearances on the World Cup circuit. Two December dates were listed as “TBC” on the schedule, pending final site inspections by organisers.
The opening round on October 10 will go back to Waterloo, Wisconsin, on the home turf of Trek Bikes, which was originally scheduled as the leadoff World Cup race last year.
Returning for a fifth year is Jingle Cross, World Cup races on October 17 that are traditionally part of a three-day weekend of racing in Iowa City, Iowa and its signature ‘Mount Krumpit’ climb.
A mid-week and first-time World Cup contest slotted between the Midwestern races will be FayetteCross, now in its third year on the US circuit, on October 13. The course in Fayetteville will be held at the 228-acre Centennial Park, providing a preview of the course for the 2022 UCI Cyclocross World Championships on January 29-30.
The Cyclo-cross World Championships will return to North America for a second time from January 29-30, 2022, being held in Fayetteville. The only other time the Worlds were held in the US was in 2013, when the event was moved for the first time outside Europe and hosted in Louisville, Kentucky.
“I can confidently say there is no other cyclocross course like this in the United States, perhaps anywhere,” said Brook Watts, FayetteCross race director. “We have been building this course for the past 16 months, with each meter of the course dedicated to bringing the best out of this beautiful Fayetteville mountainside.
“It has daredevil chutes, a lung-busting climb challenging off-camber sections plus a 38 step climb that will test the racers.”
Should spectators be allowed back to races this fall, Watts said, “most of the course is accessible with ease, even the wooded sections.”
The optimism to allow spectators was also echoed by John Meehan, the promoter and race director of Jingle Cross, which includes cyclo-cross and gravel races for amateurs around the dates of the World Cup races.
“We are excited to partner with Flanders Classics and bring the UCI Cyclo-Cross World Cup back to Iowa City and the three-day Jingle Cross Cycling Festival. The Jingle Cross festival will also include over 60 amateur cyclo-cross and gravel events for thousands of spectators and participants,” said Meehan.
When the 2020-21 schedule was originally announced last year, the UCI Management Committee confirmed that Flanders Classics had taken over organising the World Cups and that a limited the number of events would held in the historical heart of cyclo-cross, Belgium, to a maximum half of the 14-16 races in the series. The calendar omitted Iowa City as one of the World Cup rounds, selecting only Waterloo for its single stop in the US.
From the original 14 scheduled World Cup events, only five were able to move forward last season after the calendar was rescuffled due to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic. The Waterloo World Cup event was cancelled as well as a new event that would have been held in Dublin, Ireland. The few events that did continue were confined to a small geographic region to include Belgium, Czech Republic and the Netherlands.
2021-2022 Cyclo-cross World Cup Schedule
- October 10: Waterloo, Wisconsin, USA
- October 13: Fayetteville, Arkansas, USA
- October 17: Iowa City, Iowa, USA
- October 24: Zonhoven, Belgium
- October 31: Overijse, Belgium
- November 14: Tabor, Czech Republic
- November 21: Koksijde, Belgium
- November 28: Besançon, France
- December 5: TBC
- December 12: TBC
- December 18: Antwerp, Belgium
- December 19: Namur, Belgium
- December 26: Dendermonde, Belgium
- January 2: Hulst, Netherlands
- January 19: Flamanville, France
- January 23: Hoogerheide, Netherlands