Well, it's official, I guess. The news is now emanating from Za Motherland about the cancellation of this year's UCI Master's World Cyclocross Championships. Sad sad sad state of affairs.
A few months ago I heard rumblings from my dear friend Mark of Black Market Racing. Parenthetically, it needs to be understood that we...we=Americans...have a rich history of participating in the Master's Worlds for a decade or more. Folks like Mark and the BMR crew, Kathy Sarvary and Tom Stevens and of course the machine himself, Mr. Will Black, have been packing up their bikes and heading to this race for a decade or more.
With these relationships having been formed over the years by guys like Mark et al, we now have great relationships with the inner-sanctum of the Belgian Cycling Federation and regional authorities which are kept up around the calendar year and re-formed when the troops head back over to race year after year. Dialog with authorities on the Belgian Cycling Selection as an example indicated that these 2010 Master's Worlds getting cancelled unfortunately all comes down to a lack of financing (isn't it always money??). 30K Euros was the apparent sum required and unfortunately not able to be sourced for the event. How that was to be utilized (e.g. between the UCI and the Zilvermeer course and others) is not understood....but alas it's assumed that hands were thrown in the air and brain damage was being done and the event was whacked. The solution: The European Masters Cyclocross Championships held in Mol, same Bat Time, same Bat Channel...just sans UCI. And sand beautiful master's jersey. Oh and 'non Europeans' are apparently allowed to race their championships. Sigh. What does it all mean....
This all begs the question of fundrasing. I mean, we pushed and got something infinitley more insurmountable done here in Boulder with the Valmont Bike Park. That is a multi-million dollar sustainable park! Here, I wonder why a consortium wasn't assembled, sponsors solicited and pushed hard. Maybe it was. It makes me think that the Master's Worlds is just something that is 'humored' by its organizers and the UCI itself....yet still cherished by riders.
Anyways, I digress. I'm bummed out for those who were making plans for this yet I'd still encourage you to go. The racing in the area at that time is unbelievable and you'll learn lots you need to bring back to your regions here in the US. This is how we grow.