Reigning world cyclo-cross champion (and road race champion), Marianne Vos (Rabobank), is not a woman accustomed to defeat.
Having finished second to reigning UCI Cyclo-Cross World Cup holder, Katie Compton (Trek), in the last two rounds, however, the all-conquering queen of cycling will have to find something more if she is to retain the rainbow jersey next February.
Compton finished some 20 seconds ahead of her rival at Zolder on Boxing Day to increase her lead at the top of the World Cup standings.
Lars van der Haar (Rabobank) was another to increase his advantage in Zolder, taking his third victory of this season’s world cup campaign by finishing ahead of the Czech duo of Martin Bina (Kwadro-Stannah) and double world champion, Zdenek Stybar (Omega Pharma-QuickStep).
Stybar, who this season saw his road career blossom with overall victory at the Eneco Tour, and who claimed his first Grand Tour stage victory on stage seven of the Vuelta a Espana, raced in the colours of Czech national ‘cross champion, rather than the more familiar turquoise and white of OPQS.
Photographer, Balint Hamvas, was on hand to capture all the action from the circuit in Zolder.