Zdenek Stybar (Telenet-Fidea) displaced world champion Niels Albert (BKCP-Powerplus) as the UCI Cyclocross World Cup leader on Sunday after winning the eighth round of the series in Roubaix. Belgians Klaas Vantornout (Sunweb-Projob) and Sven Nys (Landbouwkrediet-Colnago) finished second and third, respectively.
Albert could manage only eighth place, 1:32 behind Stybar. The world champ, who suffered a fractured rib after a spectator pulled him off his bike last week during the Belgian national championships, rode cautiously and announced before the race that he would not be a candidate for the victory.
Stybar said that he didn’t expect to win, having had bad legs early on, but added that he felt better as the race progressed.
Jonathan Page (Planet Bike) was the top American in 18th place, 3:20 back.
When the points were tallied, Stybar was the new World Cup leader with 565 points. Albert had slipped to second with 551 while Nys sits third with 480.
In women’s racing, Katerina Nash (Luna) grabbed the victory in Roubaix, finishing 13 seconds ahead of Hanka Kupfernagel (Germany) with Dutchwoman Marianne Vos (Nederland Bloeit) third at 52 seconds back.
Daphny Van den Brand, who finished fourth on the day, moved into the series lead with 285 points, 20 points ahead of Vos, while American Katie Compton (Planet Bike) slipped to third with 260. Compton, who had been leading the World Cup, did not take the start in Roubaix.
Meredith Miller (Tibco) was the top American on the day, crossing 12th at 3:34.
The final round of the World Cup will be January 24 in Hoogerheide, the Netherlands, followed by the UCI Cyclocross World Championships January 31 in Tabor, Czech Republic. — Agence France Presse contributed to this report.