Niels Albert winning in Lille (file photo). © Bart Hazen
OOSTMALLE, BELGIUM – After a disappointing finish last week at Superprestige Middelkerke, where he lost his top spot in the overall standings of that series, Niels Albert (BKCP-Powerplus) found redemption with the win at Oostmalle.
Albert soloed in to claim first place at the eighth and final event of the bpost Bank Trofee series, finishing second in the overall standings, and ending this season on a high note.
“I am very pleased that I was able to get something straight here, and I can see therefore a good feeling about the future,” said Albert.
Corne Van Kessel (Telenet-Fidea) took the holeshot but was soon overtaken by Albert, Sven Nys (Crelan-AA Drink), and Tom Meeusen (Telenet-Fidea). Then in the third lap, Albert found his rhythm, distancing himself from the competition.
Meeusen tried to respond but could not hold Albert’s wheel, finishing just seven seconds down for second place. Kevin Pauwels (Sunweb-Napoleon Games) emerged from the chase to finish third, 39 seconds down on the leader.
After taking the intermediate sprint, Nys was forced to drop back, finishing 10th for the day. “General fatigue,” is how Nys explained the end-of-season performance. Yet despite the less than stellar finish, Nys’ advantage going into the event allowed him to secure the overall series win.
In the women’s race, Sanne Cant (Enertherm-BKCP) took the win to secure her third bpost Bank Trofee series title, edging out Helen Wyman (Kona Factory Team) for the top spot.
Wyman, who had gone into the final race with a 31 second advantage, could not match the Belgian’s pace, finishing third for the day, 1:35 down on the leader.
Loes Sels (Young Telenet-Fidea), who took the holeshot, had a surprising second-place finish, coming across the line 29 seconds behind Cant, well ahead of Wyman and the rest of the field.
Wyman and Cant were in third and fourth place respectively at the start, when a surge by Cant allowed her to evade what she correctly predicted as a traffic jam in the first sand pit. Nikki Harris (Young Telenet-Fidea) slipped into third in the overall and fourth for the day, in part due to getting caught in the backup that ensued.
Once at the front, Cant put it in high gear. Sels managed to hold her wheel for a time but eventually had to ease off. Sels, returned to the sport after giving birth to two daughters and said in a post race interview, “I made it my goal to get on the podium over here as I know I go well through the sand.”
2014 bpost Bank Trofee-Oostmalle Elite Men's Results
|4||Lars VAN DER HAAR||NED||1:05:02|
|5||Eddy VAN IJZENDOORN||NED||1:05:16|
|15||Thijs VAN AMERONGEN||NED||1:06:50|
|20||Kenneth VAN COMPERNOLLE||BEL||1:07:37|
|22||Twan VAN DEN BRAND||NED||1:07:37|
|23||Corne VAN KESSEL||NED||1:08:34|
|26||Patrick VAN LEEUWEN||NED||1:09:11|
|36||Edwin DE WIT||BEL|
|37||Hans VAN DEN BOGAERT||BEL|
2014 bpost Bank Trofee – Oostmalle Elite Women's Results
|5||Ellen Van Loy||(Bel)||0:02:08|
|12||Lindy Van Anrooij||(Ned)||0:04:11|
|15||Margriet Helena Kloppenburg||(Den)||0:05:17|
|16||Sophie De Boer||(Ned)||0:05:20|
|21||Meg De Bruyne||(Bel)|
|23||Nele Van Maldeghem||(Bel)||0:07:00|
|39||Caitlyn La Haye||(Bel)|