Christine Majerus has won round four of the Coupe de France cyclocross series in Flamanville on Saturday. It’s the second time in a row that the Luxembourg champ arrived solo at the finish line in a Coupe de France race, also having taken the win in Jablines earlier this month. She was joined on the podium by Marlene Petit (Vulco-VC Vaulx-in-Velin) and Caroline Mani (Van Dessel-Atom Composites).
Always a strong starter, Majerus once again pushed straight from the start as the race would enter a difficult mud section after only 200 metres of racing. “The goal was to be the first to go into that mud section,” Majerus explained. “If you arrive there in third or fourth position, you can easily lose the race right there. It’s also good to test out the legs at this point, because I always find that hard to do during warm-up.”
Majerus and Mani went into the mud side by side, but the Luxembourg champ didn’t hold back. She went full gas and never let down the tempo.
“Racing in these conditions is always difficult, you have to keep the pressure on the pedals at all times,” Majerus said. “Sometimes, it was better to walk which I did. You can lose a lot of time when you slip or crash and I didn’t want to risk that. So on two sections of the course I decided to always dismount the bike.”
As the race progressed, Majerus took the lead and built an advantage of 20 seconds to her closest rival. Without letting her attention slip, Majerus held the advantage until the finish line. “It might sound like a lot, but 20 seconds is nothing if you crash or suffer a mechanical. That’s why I continued to stay focused and kept going until well into the last lap.”
The French cyclocross races are obviously good for Majerus, but there’s another reason that she regularly travels to France. “These crosses deserve to be better known,” she said. “I hope that other foreigh riders will come down here to contest these races in the future as well, because that will increase the level in France and will motivate the young French riders.”
After a day off to celebrate New Year’s Eve, Majerus is back racing in Pétange on home turf on New Year’s Day, she enters the EKZ CrossTour in Meilen, Switzerland on January 2nd. “I must admit that, unlike last year, I could not train that much for my cyclocross racing specifically, so I’m probably not as good as I was last year. I felt that in the World Cups, where the level is definitely higher this year. I hope to find my shape for Worlds in the smaller races next month.”