Road World Cup 2008
The World Cup is a season-long competition. The winner will be the rider with the greatest number of points achieved via those awarded to their finishing position in the qualifying events. Not everyone who finishes a World Cup gets points, there are only points for the top 20 finishers in any of the 11 events throughout the year. Ten out of the eleven events are road races. The winner gets 75 points, second 50 points, third 35 points and so on, down to the twentieth finisher, who gets one point. In the other event, a team time trial, the points are slightly different, reduced, with only 35 points for the winner, whilst second gets 30 points and third 25 points. The points still run down to one for the twentieth finisher.
The leader of the World Cup each year wears a special jersey. It is white, with blue sleeves and rainbow colour pattern on the chest.
Judith Arndt - World Cup winner, 2008
In the past, the final event, the Rund Um Die Nürnberger Altstadt, has seen double points awarded to each of the top twenty finishers. This is not the case in the 2008 rules. Each event in the series will award the same number of points (see below). In 2006, Nicole Cooke (Univega) had already sewn up the title with one round remaining, despite 150 points being available in the final event. In 2007, as leader after the penultimate event, she had an 80 point advantage over second-placed contender, Marianne Vos (DSB Bank). The double points on offer meant that Vos, who contested the sprint in Nurnberg and finished first, took 150 points. Cooke was suffering with a knee injury which required subsequent surgery and coasted in with the bunch in 34th place. The Raleigh-Lifeforce rider had led the 2007 competition since winning the first event in Geelong and was defeated in her defence only in the final event in September.
Points available for road race events
Points available for team time trial event
There is also a team classification in the World Cup, won in the past two years by Thomas Campana's Raleigh Lifeforce (Univega in 2006) squad. The competition acknowledges the role of teams, even in the individual competition. Thus, teams of 6 riders (on the day) are allowed to enter each event. A minimum of 4 must start the race. It is permissible for team managers to use different combinations of riders within the 6 allowed within each race, changing the team to suit their strengths and the terrain involved on the 'parcours' from the squad of riders listed in the team for the year.
As mentioned above, there is a team time trial in the World Cup this year. This will take place in August and will be organised by the same committee as hosts the "Open de Suède Vårgårda" road race which is included in the series two days prior. This is not the first time a TTT has been included in the World Cup. In 2006, the Danish round of the competition was a TTT, dubbed the "Ladies Golden Hour", it was the first time a team time trial had been included and was won by Univega by just 2 seconds from Buitenpoort-Flexpoint. See top of page click here for the link to 2006 World Cup coverage. Or click here to see the Golden Hour coverage from 2006
The first 7 events on the calendar will be of interest not only for their part in the World Cup competition. They are also nominated by several National Federations as selection events for the road race at the Beijing Olympics in August. Riders will be out to impress selectors with their performances as well as wishing to accrue World Cup points. Furthermore, the time period UCI points for qualification to the Olympic road race finishes on 31 May 2008. Three riders from the top 16 ranked nations and two riders from the nations ranked 17th to 24th will make up the peloton of 67 riders. Included within the 67 are 3 riders from the top 3 'B World Championship' nation rankings for 2007**.
** 'B World Championships' are run for the small nations by the UCI. Nations which are not otherwise represented at international level. (China was included in the "B Worlds" in Switzerland 2003 and now competes in the main rankings!) The "B Worlds" were held in South Africa in July 2007.
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