Katie Compton second in Hoogerheide mud-fest

It was her best World Cup result this season in the final race ahead of the World Championships.

On a slick and thick muddy course that suited the powerful riders, Katie Compton (KFC Racing) came through with a season-best World Cup result, racing to second place behind Lucinda Brand (Sunweb). With the cyclocross world championships one week out, there was no better time for Compton to show she cannot be counted out for the podium in Denmark, especially if all goes well with breathing issues that have often hindered the American.

I’m really happy with my race this weekend, everything went well physically and mechanically. My body was good, and my equipment dialed. I enjoyed the course changes and the heavy mud suited my strengths and technical skills. After a season of struggle, I’m most excited about being able to breathe well and not have any asthma issues during the race. Hopefully, I can feel strong and ride well again for worlds this Saturday.

Marianne Vos (CCC-Liv) held off Suzanne Cant (Corendon-Circus) to round out the podium and also claimed the World Cup overall title.

How it unfolded

Marianne Vos started fast, putting in a huge effort on the first lap. She opened a gap to most of her competitors, including Compton who found herself in the second group around 15-16 seconds behind.

On the second lap, the pace relented, allowing the others to eventually close back to Vos. Brand then put in her move, taking the lead, and was never challenged in the last half of the mud-fest, while the battle for second was a close affair between five riders that included Vos, Compton, and Cant.

On the final lap, Vos and Compton had opened a lead over the others, until a composed Compton, in her element in the tough muddy conditions, eventually pulled away from Vos. The fast start seemingly caught up to the Dutch former world champion while Compton enjoyed her best sensations in a world cup race this season. Compton crossed the line nine seconds after Brand, with Vos arriving at 26 seconds and Cant two seconds later.

It was a hard one from start to finish; you had to push hard through the mud and stay focused on the technical parts. I really liked how the course rode, and I’m especially happy my lungs worked and I could breathe since that’s usually the hardest part for me at this venue.