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Cyclocross

Clara Honsinger on Fayetteville ‘cross worlds: ‘I’m hoping to be a good host’

US national champion hoping the best of the American racing scene will be on show in Arkansas next weekend.

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Two-time U.S. champion Clara Honsinger is hoping to put on a show at the Fayetteville cyclocross worlds next weekend.

Honsinger sees the Arkansas races as the opportunity to both score a surprise for herself and to show the world the best of the U.S cyclocross scene.

“I’m hoping, personally, to be a good host. It’s unique that [the worlds] are in the United States and we’re having the entire world come to our country, our culture, and our race scene,” Honsinger said in a recent interview with USA Cycling.

“I want to make sure I do my part to put on a great race and experience for all the other riders, some of whom may be traveling to North America for the first time. I want them to walk away saying, ‘Wow, that was really cool,’ and I hope I can somehow contribute and support that result for everyone.”

Honsinger, 24, blasted through the European winter in another stellar season with Cannondale-Cyclocrossworld that saw victory at the Koppenbergcross and a second-place at the World Cup round in Dendermonde.

She also jetted back Stateside last month to net her second national title.

After spending the festive period back racing in Europe, Honsinger opted to return to Portland in early January rather than risk any late-hour COVID travel complications.

Despite missing the final European tune-up races in the past two weekends, Honsinger is hoping the course on tap for worlds next Saturday plays in her favor as she looks to better her fourth-place from last winter’s race.

“I think there will be a few extra corners compared to the world cup, but [Fayetteville] is an interesting course because it’s so wide and there are very few pinch points. So, it’s going to be pretty easy to make passes and move up, which is good for me because I tend to have a slower first lap,” she said.

“I’m favoring my chances to do well because I’ll be able to push through each lap and make up some ground.”