Kerry Werner (Kona Maxxis Shimano) strains up Sunday for the elite males’s UCI Cyclo-cross World Cup in Waterloo because the top-ranked US rider within the UCI particular person rankings, in thirteenth place. He is already began seven races this season and hasn’t completed decrease than fourth, together with third at Trek CX Cup C2 contest Friday.
The majority of his 2021-22 season is concentrated on the home scene, collaborating in all eight races at 4 occasions for the brand new USCX Sequence title. Plus, the USA Biking Cyclo-cross Nationals return after a yr off from the coronavirus pandemic and the World Championships returning to the US for the primary time since Louisville in 2013. A possibility to seize World Cup factors this week inside driving distance of his new residence in Roanoke, Virginia is an effective way to start out the season.
“We’re simply following these first six weekends in a row. So it is Rochester, Attraction and now we’re right here [Waterloo]. I am stoked at how I’ve began,” the 31-year-old informed Cyclingnews. “Additionally trying ahead to additional within the season. I’ve switched issues up coaching smart and did some issues in another way the previous two years so it will likely be cool to see the way it impacts the longevity of those good outcomes, hopefully.
“Worlds are all the time nice, however I do not actually have an opportunity to win Worlds. So having the ability to win Nationals and throw a jersey on my shoulders is unquestionably the next precedence than getting tenth or fifteenth on the World Championships,” added Werner, who was the highest US man at Worlds in 2019 in seventeenth place, having moved up from twenty second and twenty sixth locations the earlier two years.
He is acquired a strong probability to win the brand new USCX Sequence, trailing Vincent Baestaens (CX Workforce Deschacht-Group Hens-Containers Maes) by simply 14 factors, and 140 factors extra on the road over the following two weekends.
“For me, doing nicely within the new USCX Sequence is massive. With the brand new reside stream, with having good outcomes for that publicity. Then once more, there is no such thing as a prize cash in order that type of stings. There’s nonetheless publicity and glory,” Werner mentioned about his modest expectations. “That’s fairly typical of American bike racing on the whole. I do not imply to sound pessimistic. We now have to start out someplace and it is a good step in the correct route.”
He’s accustomed to the Worlds course, having two podiums, together with one win, at FayetteCross in 2019 earlier than it went massive time as a World Cup occasion. He is on the lookout for one other high end result this time round too, however undecided how the sphere will pan out due to journey for worldwide riders.
“I am not an enormous fan of the way in which the logistics work out for this block. All people has to take care of it, nevertheless it takes a few of the high racers out of the equation which isn’t actually what you need. A number of the high guys aren’t coping with the journey as a result of it is simply an excessive amount of in order that they’ll skip the Fayetteville World Cup. For a few of the Euro guys who come over, making an attempt to get tools down there might be fairly a nightmare,” he mentioned.
“However regardless, it is cool to see three World Cups right here [in the US], it is an ideal alternative to get some factors and in addition put a bunch of highlight on the Worlds course. I am trying ahead to seeing how they’re laying that out.”
Again in March, Werner checked out the Worlds venue, posting a video to his YouTube channel. He is very curious to see what has modified since then.
“There are a ton of berms and corners. I do not assume there is a single off-camber on the course [in March]. It is laid out like a mountain bike World Cup course, loads of berms, fairly extensive open stretches for energy. It is tremendous distinctive and can favour an influence rider.”
Additionally using on the World Cups and within the USCX is his Kona Maxxis Shimano teammate Rebecca Fahringer. They’re using the identical tools for the third yr, and the change he made to his coaching is paying off.
“Rebecca and I, we’re chugging alongside in our third yr as teammates. Tools is similar, however I acquired a brand new coach, Chris McGovern, who’s switched up some coaching stuff. We did some testing to determine extra of my weaknesses. I’ve a fairly sub-par cardio capability, so we have remedied that with longer rides, which is ideal for me.
“I really like to only go on bike rides. So having the ability to simply go for large bike rides extra usually has been actually nice. Highway, gravel, mountain bike – I do all of it and do not actually discriminate.
“Subsequent yr, I am truly going to just a little little bit of a spotlight away from cyclo-cross and deal with a few of the greater gravel races. That is to not say I will not do any ‘cross, I am going to nonetheless do a very good portion however attempt to combine in a bunch extra gravel in spring and summer season. BWR Asheville was a extremely enjoyable time, however there’s going to be a three-day stage race in August. I’m trying ahead to that, in central Pennsylvania and I grew up in southeastern PA, so it will likely be cool to see that race there.”
Werner mentioned he was upset to start out the season with no victory in his hometown race, Go Cross in Roanoke, because it was elevated to UCI Class 2 standing this yr. However he nonetheless got here away with a pair of second-place finishes and a glimmer of glory. “It is gas for the fireplace”, as Werner put it, to win the USCX Sequence and seize World Cup factors.