New Zealand

Van der Haar powered his TCX Advanced SL through the mud, confirming once again that he's the top young ’cross talent in the world. Cor Vos photo.

Van der Haar Repeats U23 World Cup title!

22 January 2012

Rabobank-Giant cyclocross racers Lars van der Haar clinched the Under-23 World Cup title Sunday with a hard-fought win at the final round in Hoogerheide, The Netherlands.

Van der Haar scored another win on his Giant TCX Advanced SL, beating Frenchman Julian Alaphilippe on a muddy course that favored power riders. Van der Haar’s Rabobank teammate Michiel van der Hiejden joined him on the podium with a third-place finish.

The win gave van der Haar his second consecutive U23 World Cup title. He also won the Dutch National Championships and European Championship earlier this season and will aim to repeat his World Championship next week in Belgium.

A Giant rider also won the elite women’s World Cup in Hoogerheide, as Marianne Vos of the new Rabobank women’s pro team scored the final round victory. Vos ended up second overall in the series, followed by Rabobank-Giant rider Katie Compton of the U.S. in third place overall for the series.

Both Vos and Compton will be aiming for rainbow stripes at next weekend’s Cyclocross World Championships.

In elite men’s racing, Belgian Bart Aernouts led the Rabobank-Giant team by finishing seventh overall in the eight-race World Cup series.