At the final World Cup in Hoogerheide, the Netherlands, today, Katie Compton (Planet Bike) showed she is in form for the World Championships in St. Wendel next weekend. The seven-time US National Champion won in solo fashion after a bobble by Hanka Kupfernagel (Stevens), which also blocked Marianne Vos (Nederland Bloeit), allowed the American to create a gap that, from that point forward, only got larger. Compton soloed to the win, with Kupfernagel taking second over Vos, followed by Sanne van Paassen (Brainwash) and Katerina Nash (Luna), respectively.
Just as in the men’s race, it was the reigning world champ, Vos, who was the early aggressor, and only Kupfernagel could match the early speeds. France’s Pauline Ferrand-Prevot, who’s shown great form in recent weeks, led the pursuit, with Compton, Sanne Cant (BKCP-Powerplus) and van Paassen clawing their way back.
Further accelerations by the lead duo left Compton trailing just behind solo, with the other chasers succumbing to the efforts. On the third lap Compton caught the leaders and moved into the lead, when Kupfernagel slid in a corner and gave the American champ all the breathing room she’d need. When Vos got back on terms, she chased with her full fury, but would fade and subsequently be caught and dropped by the Kupfernagel.
Czech national champ Nash battled van Paassen for fourth before a crash late in the race left the Luna rider in fifth. Either way, van Paassen would have taken the World Cup overall title, but finishing one position further back would have halved her 10-point spread over Compton.
British National Champion Helen Wyman crossed the line in eighth place. Among the other Americans, Meredith Miller (Cal Giant-Specialized) took a solid 12th and vindicated herself after a difficult European race swing in December, Amy Dombroski (Crank Brothers) took 18th, Sue Butler (Hudz-Subaru) 25th, and 19 year-old Kaitlin Antonneau (Cannondale p/b Cyclocrossworld.com) raced her first-ever World Cup to 31st place. Christine Vardaros (Baboco) pulled out due to a nagging injury sustained earlier in the season. Canadian Natasha Elliott finished just behind Butler in 26th.
Compton uncharacteristically struggled with the muddy conditions early in the race, and was thankful to have a good gap towards the end as a bobble in the rutted conditions would cost her a handful of seconds on the final lap. Even with that room for improvement, she was able to cross the line all alone with 18 seconds to spare to claim the solo win.
Sanne van Paassen’s result was enough to secure her lead in the overall World Cup standings, with Compton taking second in the series ahead of Marianne Vos, despite both of those riders skipping a significant portion of the races. Compton missed two World Cups, but won all five of the races she entered and finished just 10 points behind the young Dutch woman. Vos skipped three races, but her podium position today moved her from seventh up to third in the overall. Van Paassen, for her part, took the World Cup win in Plzen, Czech Republic, and was rewarded for her consistency during the season as she was a regular in the top four.
Nos Women’s Hoogerheide Video:
The cool Dutch video below spends a little time with the home town Dutch faves Vos and van Paassen, but has some great footage of Compton talking about overcoming her health issues and maturing as a rider to become the favorite for next week’s World Championships.