"Trying to beat them should not become an obsession" - Iserbyt opens up about Cyclocross rivalries, goals and feelings on transition to road

Eli Iserbyt has ridden himself into a top position atop the boards of Cyclocross, and he intends on remaining there as the discipline remains his main objective this season, with no change in sight for the future.

“I think what I do as a cyclocross rider is pretty special... I've decided for myself that what I'm doing now is enough for me," Iserbyt told RIDE Magazine. Unlike his rivals in Mathieu van der Poel, Tom Pidcock and Quinten Hermans for example, he has not wanted to take the leap onto the road, as he understood his true talent is off-road.

“Wout and Mathieu are two absolute phenomena who have an extreme amount of talent. Then I would like to tell the youth that you are not inferior if you limit yourself to cyclo-cross alone. By the way, I need those summer months to relax mentally, so that I can go for it 100 percent in the winter for six months. Nothing wrong with that, right?” he continued,

"And I can't do what they can either. Finishing a complete road program and then limiting myself to ten crosses in the winter, that doesn't suit me," he said of the riders that used to be the main features throughout the whole winters in Belgium. "Partly because I would never be a winner on the road. And cycling along as a platoon filling is really not for me. Look, in our generation everything is taken a bit out of context by Wout and Mathieu.”

Iserbyt has recently signed a four-year contract with Pauwels Sauzen - Bingoal, revealing satisfaction and commitment on both sides. Iserbyt has settled himself as one of the best in the discipline over the last few years, and is starting another important season in his career. “Then let me race for fifteen years like I do now. It's the best I can," he said.

This year Iserbyt has also tried to enter competitive mountain biking, but has been hampered by injuries: "In the summer I may still set mountain biking as a goal, although that has not been possible in recent months due to back problems. We'll see what 2023 brings in that area."

Into the 2023-2023 winter, Iserbyt is clear on his goals. “Look at my season schedule. I opt for the whole picture, including all classification and a number of individual crosses." As the winner of the World Cup and the Superprestige last year, Iserbyt has managed to ride a full season a a high level - although there were glimpses of inconsistency throughout the year.

"...We will try to win as many other crosses and classifications as possible. That will be my main goal again, together with the European Championship. If that succeeds, my season will be a success. Knocking Wout, Mathieu and Tom once is an extra. But trying to beat them should not become an obsession," he admitted.

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Cyclocross Eli Iserbyt Bingoal WB

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