by Dan Seaton & Bart Hazen
Gieten, Netherlands – On a flat but muddy course in Gieten today, Daphny van den Brand and Marrianne Vos rode away from the field in the women’s race. Sven Nys bounced back from his near miss in Koksijde to take his 50th Superprestige victory in commanding fashion. After a hard race yesterday, only World Champion Niels Albert could match Nys’ early acceleration, which blew apart the race after barely more than one lap of racing.
Dutch Women Sweep Podium – Brief Report
Dutch Champion Daphny van den Brand won the women’s Elite race in Gieten. Van den Brand and Marianne Vos rode together most of the day, working to take the top spots in Gieten. Vos tried several time to get rid of her braided compatriot, but couldn’t shake van den Brand. It ended in a two-up sprint, where van den Brand proved she was faster than World Champion Vos. Sanne van Paassen finished third to make the Dutch domination complete. From the start Vos and van den Brand battled together. With this win Van den Brand took revenge on Vos for her loss the day before.
Nys Wins a Milestone Race
Jonathan Page took the holeshot, leading the race off the road and into the thick mud that covered most of the course. A tricky muddy section and a set of barriers in rapid succession strung out the field into a long, single file line that stayed together throughout the first lap. But by the second lap, Nys decided his legs were good enough to take matters into his own hands.
Nys, looking quite comfortable despite the heavy course, simply rode away from the rest of the field and quickly found himself with a gap. Albert responded and spent a long time trailing several meters behind the Belgian Champion before Nys slowed slightly and the two connected. But it was clear that Albert didn’t have the legs to stay with him. When Albert was forced off his bike when he mishandled a small rise in the course, Nys left him behind.
Meanwhile, Fidea teammates Zdeněk Štybar and Kevin Pauwels chased Albert together for several laps before Pauwels made a solo bid for a spot on the podium. As the race approached its final laps Pauwels reached and then passed Albert, who slowed considerably late in the race. Nys, however, now some 30 seconds ahead, simply cruised home.
As Nys approached the finish line alone, he took a gold wreath with the number 50 from the sidelines and lifted it over his head in celebration as he cruised to his 50th Superprestige win. In addition to helping him mark a career milestone, the victory lifted Nys into the overall Superprestige series lead, two points ahead of Niels Albert, who finished third.
Štybar rolled alone into fourth, while Bart Aernouts edged out a group of five riders, almost a minute and a half back, for fifth.
A day after a hard-fought race on a tough, sandy course in Koksijde, it was clear that fatigue and recovery played as decisive a role in the race’s outcome as any on-the-field action. Nys told reporters that he knew he had the legs to win right from the start. “This is a ’cross for riders with power,” said Nys after the race. “Normally I don’t love it, because of lack of technical sections, but today I immediately had a good feeling. I quickly took the lead and did not ever lose it.”
Albert continued to emphasize that, despite having not won since Asper-Gavere three weeks ago, he’s not concerned about his season. “Nys was really strong again,” he told reporters. “Everyone has their peak season. For me, right now I’m in a dip, but that means I can slowly build back up. For the championships I can peak.”
Štybar, for whom the fourth place finish snapped a three-race win streak, said that he was simply tired after yesterday’s World Cup. “My start was bad and I was just tired after Koksijde,” he explained. “I was up late on Saturday and crawled into my bed and felt this morning that my legs were not recovered.”
After a strong start, Jonathan Page faded back as Nys’ attack shattered the field. Nonetheless, Page’s fortunes seemed to turn at least a bit, especially in light of his hard efforts to rejoin the field yesterday following an early fall and two flat tires. Page eventually rolled across the line in fifteenth.
Elite Women – Brief Results
1. Daphny Van Den Brand Pro Cycling Team ZZPR.nl-DESTIL-Merida
2. Marianne Vos DSB Bank – Nederland Bloeit
3. Sanne Van Paassen Pro Cycling Team ZZPR.nl-DESTIL-Merida
4. Pavla Havlikova
5. Linda Van Rijen Merida Ladies Cycling Team
6. Sophie De Boer
7. Arenda Grimberg
8. Reza Hormes Pro Cycling Team ZZPR.nl-DESTIL-Merida
9. Sabrina Stultiens RTC Buitenlust
10. Loes Gunnewijk Team Flexpoint
11. Rosa Maria Bravo
12. Rebecca Talen RSC De Zuidwesthoek
13. Lana Verberne RTC Buitenlust
14. Kirsten Peetoom Weijers Hako Movingladies
15. Iris Ockeloen DRC De Mol
16. Evy Kuijpers
17. Dirkje Bazuin Restore Cycling
18. Lizzy Witlox WV De Jonge Renner
19. Linda Kroes Hepro Kozijnen – NWV Groningen
20. Helena Van Leijen Merida Ladies Cycling Team
21. Annefleur Kalvenhaar AWV De Zwaluwen
22. Kim Van Renterghem Hand In Hand Baal
23. Karen Elzing WSV Emmen
24. Karen Brouwer Mountainbike Ver. Havelte
25. Mareille Meijering WSV Emmen
26. Maud Kaptheijns TWC De Kempen
27. Wendy Oosterwoud WV Woonexpo Kapenga
28. Ingrid Bosscha Mountainbike Ver. Havelte
29. Sanne Tent WRV De Peddelaars Hoogeveen
30. Anne Peer WV Uden
31. Femke Wierda
32. Els Den Engelse WV Ede
Elite Men – Full Results
|12||Gerben DE KNEGT||NED||35||1:01:10||6||6|
|22||Tom VAN DEN BOSCH||BEL||25||1:03:12|
|23||Patrick VAN LEEUWEN||NED||25||1:03:19|
|24||Thijs VAN AMERONGEN||NED||24||1:03:23|
|25||Wilant VAN GILS||NED||31||1:03:36|
|29||Roy VAN HEESWIJK||NED||27|
|34||Kaey VAN RIJ||NED||26|
Photo Gallery – Elite Women
Photo Gallery – Elite Men