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VN news ticker: Registration opens for Robidoux Rendezvous gravel, New bike day for Tom Pidcock, Flanders Classics acquires Gent-Wevelgem

Here's the news making headlines for Saturday, December 4.

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Registration opens for Robidoux Rendezvous gravel

Registration for the Robidoux Rendezvous gravel races opens December 5 at 9:00 MST. The event, formerly known as the Robidoux Quick & Dirty, takes place in the Wildcat Hills region of western Nebraska, just three hours from Denver, Colorado.

Read also: I raced gravel: On the ground at Nebraska’s Robidoux Quick & Dirty

Robidoux has grown immensely since its first edition in 2017, and for 2022 organizers are bringing more changes to the race. There are more distance offerings, including a 160-mile route, a new e-bike class, and a non-binary gender category. Each of the 25, 65, 100, or 160 mile routes are supported.

Registration for the 160 and 100-mile distances is $85, while the 65 and 25-mile options cost $65 and $35, respectively.

New bike day for Tom Pidcock

New ‘cross season, new ‘cross bike for Tom Pidcock.

Ineos Grenadiers revealed Thursday the new Pinarello Crossista cyclocross bike that Pidcock will be riding this winter. The custom-painted rig includes flashes of color that nods to the British “Union Jack” flag along with playing cards and the words “Play your cards right” on the down tube.

This 2021-22 winter will be Pidcock’s first season racing cyclocross in Ineos Grenadiers colors and on a Pinarello bike. Last year, the young Brit raced on the Specialized bikes of his Trinity team.

Pidcock will make his cyclocross season debut at Superprestige Boom on Saturday. Wout van Aert is also expected to be on the start line.

Flanders Classics takes ownership of Gent-Wevelgem

Race organizers Flanders Classics have added Gent-Wevelgem to its stable of leading one-day races.

It was announced this week that Flanders Classics has now taken full ownership of the men’s and women’s Gent-Wevelgem. The organization already manages Tour of Flanders, Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, Dwars door Vlaanderen, Scheldeprijs and Brabantse Pijl.

Gent-Wevelgem shareholders decided to pass full ownership to Flanders Classics this week after the group had helped organize the mammoth-length cobblestone classic since 2009.

“A lot has changed over the years, but we can look back with great pride on what we have achieved,” said officials behind Gent-Wevelgem. “We have worked very well with Flanders Classics in recent years and are confident that the quality of the organization and the individuality of the competition in and around Ypres and Wevelgem will also be preserved in the future.”

Flanders Classics CEO Tomas Van Den Spiegel said that the flavor of the race, with its dirt road “plugstreets” and passage through several First World War battlefields, would be unaffected.

“Together we have been building the Gent-Wevelgem brand ‘In Flanders Fields’ for more than 10 years,” he said. “This collaboration and its result have ensured that Gent-Wevelgem has acquired a more than solid foundation that we will continue to appreciate. Not only on the sports side but also the story, thanks to the history of Flanders Fields, which takes the race to an even higher level.”

Next year’s men’s and women’s races will take place March 27. Wout van Aert and Marianne Vos took the honors in a Jumbo-Visma double-header at this year’s competition.