ZONNEBEKE, BELGIUM – Newly crowned 2014 Belgian National Cyclocross Champion Sven Nys (Crelan-AA Drink) took the win at Kasteelcross Zonnebeke in commanding style.
Nys took control of the race from the start and managed to gain distance on the competition early on. By lap three, Nys had already managed a 30 second gap, which increased to one minute at its height, mid race.
With two to go, Tom Meeusen (Telenet-Fidea) made his move, followed by Niels Albert (BKCP-Powerplus), who has been battling a recent flu infection, and Wietse Bosmans (BKCP-Powerplus). Meeusen finished just under a minute down on Nys with the upset of the day coming from Diether Sweeck (Kwadro-Stannah), who emerged from the chase group to take third. Albert finished ninth.
“I think Albert experienced some discomfort from his illness last week because I could perfectly hold his wheel. That pace was perfect for me,” said Sweeck. “Whether I cherish hope for a place in the squad for the World Cup? I think I will be allowed to receive a selection. I knew, after all, a poor Christmas period due to illness and wanted peaks in the Belgian championship. That peak was there, but a week late, actually.”
”I felt really good today,” said Nys. “I feel very fresh. Not only in physical terms but above all mentally it is very good. That is very important. As soon as I was alone in the lead here, I switched to my own pace. Yet I still managed to drive away from the rest.”
Nys goes into the final two weeks of racing leading up to the World Championships back at his top form as the captain of the Belgian team. Albert is likely to sit out the Soudal Cyclocross Leuven on Sunday in order to ensure full recovery in time for the World Cup in Nommay next week.
2014 Kasteelcross Zonnebeke Elite Men's Results
|8||Kenneth VAN COMPERNOLLE||BEL||1:05:26|
|13||Javier RUIZ DE LARRINAGA IBANEZ||ESP||1:06:59|
|15||Jonathan LASTRA MARTINEZ||ESP||1:08:27|
|26||Bert DE WISPELAERE||BEL|
|35||Tim DE SCHUYTER||BEL|
|37||Edwin DE WIT||BEL|