Blanka Vas took the first cyclocross victory of her season in the first race over at Toi Toi Cup Hole Vrchy in the Czech Republic. The Hungarian was convinced by SD Worx Director Sportif Anna van der Breggen to forego the road World Championships in Australia and concentrate on cyclocross this off-season.
The 21-year-old was thought to be one of the potential favourites for the U23 World Championship title in Wollongong, with her 4th Overall in the last championships in Flanders an indicator that she could do well in both races. She also had the advantage of being the sole rider for Hungary and would be able to race just for her own ambitions. However, Van der Breggen spoke to her and help re-sort Blanka Vas’ priorities, who will now hope to win more World Cup races on Cyclocross and maybe a World Championship medal of any colour.
Last cyclocross season, Vas won a World Cup race at Overijse and podium places at Iowa City and Flamanville too. She came close to the European Championship with 2nd on the course at the VAMberg and was also 3rd at Koppenbergcross where Clara Honsinger took the win. She was a slightly disappointing 17th at the World Championships in Fayetteville and that will be an area for her to improve in 2022/2023.
It’s not been a smooth 2022 road season for Blanka Vas, with crashes and injuries taking her out of key moments. Her best results were 8th at the Classic Lorient Agglomération-Trophée Ceratizit (aka GP de Plouay) and 15th at the Festival Elsy Jacobs. She crashed on Stage 5 of the Giro Donne after touching wheels under the flamme rouge but managed to carry on and finish 51st Overall.
Her win here at Toi Toi Cup Hole Vrchy gets her off-road season off to a good start, finishing ahead of local rider Kristyna Zemanová and Judith Krahl.