Koksijde World Cup
Katie Compton (Trek Cyclocross Collective) continued her World Cup domination with a commanding win in the sand of Koksijde.
Sabine Stultiens (Rabo Women) took the hole-shot leaving Helen Wyman (Kona) and the rest of the pack behind. Compton meanwhile, started off a bit slower, back in 8th place. While moving up, she tangled with Nikki Harris (Young Telenet-Fidea), but the two continued on without issue. Stultiens wasn’t able to hold onto the lead, and Compton, Harris, and Wyman took to the lead. As the leading trio hit the sand, Compton upped the pace and Wyman was unable to keep up. Harris tried to hold her wheel, but both Brits lost contact with the American champion.
With Compton building her lead, Sanne Cant (Enertherm-BKCP), Sophie de Boer (Young Telenet-Fidea), and a recovering Stultiens, were able to join Wyman and Harris. The group was short lived as Cant put in an attack that only Harris was able to respond to, but the rest of the group could not. From there, not much changed. Compton continued to build her lead and took the win. Cant followed behind 1:08 later, with Harris another 14 seconds behind. Stultiens and de Boer finished just shy of 2:00 behind Compton, while Wyman was a whopping 2:31 back.
Notably missing from the race was Marianne Vos (Rabo Women) and Katerina Nash (Luna), two riders who have challenged Compton this year. Vos is still recovering from minor surgery to remove a cyst from her abdomen, and is not expected to be back until the World Cup event in Heusden-Zolder on Dec. 26th. Nash on the other hand, has been racing domestically in the US, and currently sits third in the Pro CX series. The Czech rider has no plans on racing in Europe this season.
In the men’s race, Niels Albert (KBCP-Powerplus) came away with his third win at Koksijde, which included his 2012 World Championship. A large group of riders hung at the front, but it wasn’t until the 4th of 9 laps that the race began to shake up. The sand dunes of Koksijde reeked havoc on many riders over the years, and this year was no different. Klaas Vantornout (Sunweb-Napoleon Games) inspected the sand up close as he tumbled over the bars. This caused some commotion, and helped Tom Meeusen (Telenet-Fidea) and Albert get some daylight and pull away from the leading pack. Meeusen moved to the side to let Albert set the pace, and began to fade as Albert floored it. With teammate Philipp Walsleben (BKCP-Powerplus) on the front of the lead group to slow the pace, Albert’s lead grew at a steady pace.
Sven Nys (Crelan-Euphony) seemed to be having an off day as he got tangled up with other riders in the back of the chase group. While frustrated, the World Champion did not let this end his day, and quickly charged back to the chase group, and straight to the front to set the pace. By this point, Walsleben and French Champion, Francis Mourey (FDJ) were the lead group, with Nys and Kevin Pauwels (Telenet-Fidea) joining for the final laps. With Albert easily cruising to the win, celebrating with his version of Paul Herygers dismount-remount celebration for 1994, it was left to the chasing group to battle for the remaining podium spots. As the pack of 4 came to the finish, Mourey was able to hold off Walsleben to claim the second spot. Nys was shut out and had to settle for 4th, with Pauwels finishing a few seconds behind the World Champion. World Cup leader Lars van der Haar (Rabobank) finished 10th, and keeps his leaders jersey.
Koksijde World Cup Women’s Results
- Katie Compton (USA) Trek Cyclocross Collective 0:43:32
- Sanne Cant (Bel) Enertherm-BKCP 0:01:08
- Nikki Harris (GBr) Young Telenet-Fidea Cycling Team 0:01:22
- Sabrina Stultiens (Ned) Rabobank Liv/Giant 0:01:55
- Sophie de Boer (Ned) Young Telenet-Fidea Cycling Team 0:01:56
- Helen Wyman (GBr) Kona Factory Racing 0:02:31
- Pavla Havlikova (Cze) Young Telenet-Fidea Cycling Team 0:02:42
- Martina Mikulaskova (Cze) TJ Stadion Louny 0:03:17
- Loes Sels (Bel) DNCS-Pro 2012 Cycling Team 0:03:25
- Ellen Van Loy (Bel) DNCS-Pro 2012 Cycling Team 0:03:40
Koksijde World Cup Men’s Results
- Niels Albert (Bel) BKCP-Powerplus Cycling Team 1:04:49
- Francis Mourey (Fra) FDJ.fr 0:00:32
- Philipp Walsleben (Ger) BKCP-Powerplus
- Sven Nys (Bel) Crelan KDL Cycling Team 0:00:34
- Kevin Pauwels (Bel) Sunweb-Napoleon Games Cycling Team 0:00:37
- Tom Meeusen (Bel) Telenet-Fidea Cycling Team 0:00:54
- Bart Aernouts (Bel) AA Drink Cycling Team 0:01:05
- Klaas Vantornout (Bel) Sunweb-Napoleon Games Cycling Team 0:01:13
- Corne Van Kessel (Ned) Telenet-Fidea Cycling Team 0:01:14
- Lars van der Haar (Ned) Rabobank Development Team 0:01:33
Internationale Hamsgrohe Superprestige Gieten
It was another exciting opening lap in the women’s race that determined the winner. Reza Hormes (Orange Babies) took the opening lead, but Cant could not wait, and made her move. By the end of the first lap though, it was Wyman who moved to the front and pulled away from the rest of the group. Cant continued on at the front, and Stultiens joined her to fight for second. The two battled along the course with Cant able to gain a slight advantage. Wyman easily crossed the line for the win and the Belgian Champion Cant came across 26 seconds later. Stultiens took third five seconds later. The rest of the field trickled across the line well over a minute after Wyman took the win.
The men’s race was a bit more chaotic at the start. Albert crashed early into the first lap and had work his way back up to the front through the strung out field. While cyclocross might now always seem like a team sport, his teammates helped move him up like they would on the road, and got him back into contention. Five laps had passed though, and Nys was drilling it on the front of the lead group, that is until his front wheel slid out on a corner. The World Champion was able to recover and continue on, but about a half a lap later, his rear derailleur went into his wheel and his day was all but done. He wasn’t ready to give up yet though, and ran to the pits and faced the challenge of making it back to the front.
Up ahead, van der Haar, Albert, and Vantornout were able to create some space when Rob Peeters (Telenet-Fidea) faltered in a sand section. Albert stayed with the group a little longer, before taking launching his own attack. Only van der Haar was able to follow. Walsleben and Meeusen were able to catch the chase group and the Telenet-Fidea rider took over at the front. As hard as Meeusen tried, he could not make back any time on Albert and van der Haar, leaving the duo to determine who would stand on the top step of the podium. Nys, siting too many riders and a course not technical enough to help him advance back into the points, called it a day and headed back to the bus.
On the final lap, Albert was able to leave van der Haar behind on a steep run up closing into the finish. The young Dutchman had mechanical problems on the initial pedal strokes after the remount and saw his chances for the victory disappear. Albert was able to create a gap that he saw to the finish, taking his second win of the weekend. Meeusen and Walsleben were able to catch van der Haar, but he was able to take the sprint for second, 15 seconds behind Albert. Meeusen took third, while Albert’s teammate finished just off the last step of the podium. Albert’s win sees him leap ahead of Nys to take over the lead in the Superprestige.
Superprestige Gieten Women’s Results
- Helen Wyman (GBr) Kona Factory Racing 0:41:06
- Sanne Cant (Bel) Enertherm-BKCP 0:00:26
- Sabrina Stultiens (Ned) Rabobank Liv/Giant 0:00:31
- Annefleur Kalvenhaar (Ned) Giant Dealerteams 0:01:24
- Pavla Havlikova (Cze) Young Telenet-Fidea Cycling Team 0:01:41
- Sophie de Boer (Ned) Young Telenet-Fidea Cycling Team 0:02:17
- Crystal Anthony (USA) Optum Pro Cycling p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies 0:02:32
- Reza Hormes-Ravenstijn (Ned) Orange Babies Cycling Team 0:03:07
- Martina Mikulaskova (Cze) TJ Stadion Louny 0:03:23
- Asa Maria Erlandsson (Swe) Varbergs MTB-Cube 0:03:35
Superprestige Gieten Men’s Results
- Niels Albert (Bel) BKCP-Powerplus Cycling Team 1:01:35
- Lars van der Haar (Ned) Rabobank Development Team 0:00:15
- Tom Meeusen (Bel) Telenet-Fidea Cycling Team
- Philipp Walsleben (Ger) BKCP-Powerplus
- Marcel Meisen (Ger) Kwadro-Stannah Cycling Team 0:00:30
- Kevin Pauwels (Bel) Sunweb-Napoleon Games Cycling Team 0:00:36
- Martin Bina (Cze) Kwadro-Stannah Cycling Team
- Bart Aernouts (Bel) AA Drink Cycling Team
- Klaas Vantornout (Bel) Sunweb-Napoleon Games Cycling Team
- Rob Peeters (Bel) Telenet-Fidea Cycling Team