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Q&A: Marianne Vos on racing cobbles and ‘cross just days apart

The Dutch multi-discipline megastar barely let the mud dry on her road bike before she took to her 'cross bike a week later.

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Marianne Vos finished in second place at the inaugural Paris-Roubaix Femmes last Saturday. While the roads and pavé were wet, rutted, and slippery, they were not exactly preparation for a 50-minute cyclocross race over bridges, barriers, and muddy uphill turns.

And while some of her competition took several weeks to transition from racing on the road to getting ready for the ‘cross season — like compatriot and current world cyclocross champion Lucinda Brand — Vos is opting to use her road fitness to launch directly into the ‘cross season.

Barely more than 96 hours passed between Vos finishing in the Roubaix Velodrome and when she touched down in the United States to begin the 2021-22 cyclocross season, starting at the World Cup in Waterloo this weekend.

VeloNews: You just finished second at the first-ever Paris-Roubaix Femmes, and now you’re racing here in the United States a week later. How are you feeling?

Marianne Vos: I flew out on Wednesday so I had a couple of days off after Roubaix and I get the legs fresh again. Of course, an exciting trip ahead and that makes them travel more easy.

It’s the first World Cup and it’s a star-stacked field so I think I will be very, very hard and I’ll try my best. I mean, I’m just out of the road season so it’s not that I have too much pressure on myself for the weekend, but of course, I’m going to try what I can, and I’ll see whatever. Not worry I end up.

VN: What was the experience like racing in the first Paris-Roubaix for women?

MV: It was fantastic. It was very exciting to do it, it was also a little bit scary and nervous. We were all nervous, what to expect. But yeah, I think most of the riders [say the same] even though things happen in the race, we really, really enjoyed being there.

VN: What about the differences between racing ’cross in the United States and in Europe?

MV: In the States it is different. It’s a mass event it’s a participation event so everybody is just riding and cheering and enjoying the cyclocross. I did it a couple of years ago. I really enjoyed the racing and I’m looking forward to race again.

VN: American Coryn Rivera Labecki just signed with Jumbo-Visma. What do you think?

MV: She’s a great addition, She is a fantastic bike rider. Very all-round, so yeah I think we have a very good rider with her in the team, and I’m looking forward to race with her next year, and spring is already to the races. That’s good news!