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No live coverage of the UK’s Cyclocross National Championships this weekend

Joseph Delves
9 Jan 2020

With fans left to follow along on social media, we pick who to look out for in the men's and women's races

This weekend will see Britain’s Cyclocross National Championship take place in Shrewsbury. Running over Saturday 11th and Sunday 12th January, everyone from the 60+ Vets to Under-14s will be fighting it out.

With Britain’s super-talented Under-23 riders mixed in with the Elites, both men’s and women’s races should prove worth catching. Unfortunately, unlike previous years there’ll be no live coverage, meaning you’ll either have to get yourself to Shropshire or follow along on social media.

Sunday 13:15, Under-23 and Elite Women

The women’s race is likely to be the day’s most fiercely contested. Since 2006, Nikki Brammeier and Helen Wyman had passed the title back and forth. Now having both retired, last year saw their final battle, with Brammeier taking a final win.

This year their joint exit leaves the field open for a slew of younger riders. Recently returned from racing the World Cup in Zolder, Belgium, Beth Crumpton will be one to look out for, as will last year's silver medalist Anna Kay. National Trophy Ffion James is also clearly on great form.

A three-time winner in the U23 category, Evie Richards would have been an extremely good bet in that race, and also a potential contender for the Elite podium. Sadly, she appears not to be racing.

Sunday 14:30, Under-23 and Elite Men

By comparison, the men’s race has one clear favourite, seeming likely to be defending champion Tom Pidcock's to lose. Having now stepped up to Elite level on the international circuit, the 20-year-old rider will line up beside five-time champion Ian Field.

Proving how much young talent is currently in the BC ranks, last year’s silver and bronze Elite medalists came in the form of Ben Turner and Thomas Mein, both of whom remain U23s.

How to follow the racing

Unlike 2018 when coverage was available via the BBC’s red button service, coverage of last year’s event came via a livestream on British Cycling's website. Sadly this year there won’t be any conventional coverage.

With the cost of providing coverage running into tens of thousands of pounds, British Cycling had initially seemed keen to fund this, as it had done in previous years. However, with the decision to cover former editions having come late in the day, this year the organisers were unable to get British Cycling to commit to the expense.

This is despite last year’s livestream attracting around 100,000 viewers. Several fans pointed out that Ireland’s National Federation had managed to cover similar costs at its home championships this weekend. It’s possible British Cycling might be feeling the pinch having splurged at the recent Road World Championships in Harrogate.

At a time when cyclocross seems to be increasing in popularity, this will sadly leave fans to follow the race via British Cycling’s social media accounts.

This article was amended after contact from the host club questioning some of the information supplied to Cyclist by British Cycling