Fem van Empel has had a strong cyclocross season, winning the World Cup, the X2O Badkamers Trophy and the World Championships. Her signing in January for Jumbo-Visma from Pauwels Sauzen-Bingol always contained a chance of an increased road season than previous years. 2022 saw Van Empel contest the Thüringen Ladies Tour where the Dutch rider finished 26th in GC and 9th in her best stage result. She was also 3rd in the U23 European road race in Anadia, Portugal.
Van Empel’s spring will see her confirmed to race just 3 times. She will open with the Volta Limburg Classic, a non-UCI race but one with a high reputation. It was won by Amber Kraak in 2022 and Demi Vollering in the last edition held before Covd in 2019. From there, she will race Brabantse Pijl on April 12th and Fleche Wallonne on April 19th. After that, her focus will be towards mountain bike racing, with an eye on the Olympics in 2024.
“I never expected to have such a great season in cyclocross. The feeling of winning is still great, and I am happy it worked out again. I started the season with a win, and now I’m finishing it with a win. It could hardly be any better. There was a lot of pressure on me because I was the favourite at the start of quite a few races. I think I handled it well. I can only be happy with the way things turned out.
It is still a bit early to state specific goals about my road season. I ride the Volta Limburg Classic, the Brabantse Pijl and the Fleche Wallonne and then I pick up mountain biking again. It will be a beautiful journey of discovery.”Fem van Empel