Shirin van Anrooij, the 21-year-old Dutch cyclist currently in her off-season, is set to return to cyclocross in early December. The Lidl-Trek team member, who competes for Baloise Trek Lions during the winter months, will participate in the Superprestige event in Boom on the 2nd of December.
The versatile van Anrooij, who recently featured in the podcast ‘De Grote Plaat’, shared reflections on her past cycling season and discussed her outlook for the upcoming road season, with a particular focus on cyclo-cross. Having competed in three cyclo-cross events this season, the Dutch rider chose to take a break following a DNF at the World Cup in Waterloo on the 15th of October.
Following a demanding road season, van Anrooij took the conscious decision to ease off for a few weeks, yet she’s gearing up to re-enter the cyclo-cross field in just over a fortnight. Her return will see her tackle a back-to-back weekend, starting with the Superprestige in Boom on a Saturday, followed by the World Cup in Flamanville the next day.
Van Anrooij outlined her forthcoming schedule, “I’ll be heading to Spain afterwards for a training camp with the road team. Then, I’ll participate in the World Cup in Namur in mid-December, which will be followed by the busy Christmas period when I’ll be competing in numerous cyclo-cross events. Another training camp is lined up for January,” she explained, also confirming her participation in the World Cyclo-Cross Championships taking place in Tábor, Czech Republic, at the beginning of February.
A Shift in Focus for van Anrooij
In a previous interview with WielerFlits, van Anrooij conveyed her plans to adopt a different approach to this cyclo-cross season. “For the first time, I’m actually having a proper off-season and a normal build-up to the road season. Through this, I aim to place more focus on next year’s classics. I’m quite keen on discovering my potential in those events, and this investment is necessary,” she stated.
“However, I will never walk away from cyclo-cross. I simply enjoy it too much, it’s a significant part of my joy in cycling. That’s why it’s such a tough decision. By making this choice, I essentially take myself out of the running for all classifications,” van Anrooij admitted, acknowledging the impact of her decision on her cyclo-cross standings.
Regarding her team manager’s reaction to her plan, van Anrooij said, “Sven Nys, the Baloise Trek Lions manager, probably has mixed feelings about it. But on the other hand, he does understand it very well. He’s quite pleased that I will still compete in at least a few cyclo-cross races for the team.”