2021 CX Worlds Day 1
Team USA

Honsinger Top Finisher On Day 1 At Cyclocross Worlds in Ostend

By: Angelina Palermo  January 30, 2021

Four women represent Team USA at the 2021 UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships.

OSTEND, Belgium – The 2021 UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships kicked off in Ostend, Belgium on Saturday. Reigning National Champion, Clara Honsinger (Portland, Ore.; Cannondale Cyclocrossworld), earned the top spot for Americans on the day, placing fourth in the electrifying Elite Women’s race.

“Today’s race was a huge challenge between the sand and the cold rain, but difficult conditions suit me well. I rode a steady race and continued to catch riders. It feels extremely satisfying to finish the season with a fourth-place finish at Worlds. I’m looking forward to some rest but extremely motivated for next year!” said Honsinger about her race.

Joining Honsinger for Team USA on the line of the 39-starter Elite Women’s race were 15-time National Champion Katie Compton (Colorado Springs, Colo.; KFC Racing/Trek/Knight Composites), Rebecca Fahringer (Concord, N.H.; Kona/Maxxis/Shimano), and Kaitie Keough (Colorado Springs, Colo.; Cannondale Cyclocrossworld). The race consisted of 5 laps of the 2.9-kilometer course on the beaches of the Ostend. Conditions were windy and wet, the standard for a Belgian cyclocross event.

The race started with a bang with a quick pile up immediately after the first turn. From there the action would be non-stop, where the Dutch National Team would attempt to dominate the event. Denise Betsema (NED), would set the pace early in the race, at one point having 30 seconds up on Dutch teammates Lucinda Brand and Annemarie Worst. After the start, Honsinger was sitting in 13th but quickly picking off her competitors as the laps went on.

With 2 laps to go, Brand would make her move, close the gap and overtake Betsema, with Worst hot on her wheel. At the same time, Honsinger would cement her place in the top-five, the only rider in the bunch who was not from the Netherlands. At the end of the race Brand would claim the rainbow stripes for the Dutch. Honsinger would be the only non-Dutch rider in the top six. She finished 52-seconds back, just off the podium in fourth.

“Clara rode a really good race. She put in a very solid first lap and put herself in a good position early in the race. The front three riders separated themselves early, and Clara did a great job moving forward through the field to mount her chase for the podium. She rode consistent laps and minimized mistakes, which was one of the keys today”, said USA Cycling Cyclocross Manager, Jesse Anthony. “In the end, Clara rode a very good race and used her composure and intensity to earn a very solid 4th place. She can be very proud of that effort.”

Racing continues tomorrow with the U23 Women and Elite Men’s event. Madigan Munro (Boulder, Colo.; Trek Factory Racing) will be representing the red, white, and blue in the U23 Women’s event, which will start at 7:00 a.m. ET/4:00 a.m. PT. Curtis White (Delanson, N.Y.; Cannondale Cyclocrossworld) will be wearing the national team kit in the Elite Men’s event starting at 9:00 a.m. ET/6:00 a.m. PT. You can follow all the action on @usacyclinglive on twitter, or tune in live with Flo Bikes.

Final Results

1Lucinda BrandNED46:53
2Annemarie WorstNED+:08
3Denise BetsemaNED+:19
4Clara HonsingerUSA+:52
21Katie ComptonUSA+4:13
23Rebecca FahringerUSA+4:27
35Kaitie KeoughUSA+8:11

Visit USACycling.org for more information on the athletes, events and membership programs, and follow @USACycling across all channels for the latest on Team USA.