Lars Boom

Lars Boom on his way to his sixth national title © Bart Hazen

by Bart Hazen

Boom Ends Season with National Title
Lars Boom (Rabobank) has ended his 2011/12 cyclocross campaign with his sixth consecutive national title. In Huijbergen, Boom was too strong for Thijs van Amerongen (AA Cycling Team) and the surprising Niels Wubben (AG2R – La Mondiale). Twan van den Brand (WV Schijndel) and Thijs Al (AA Cycling Team) completed the top five.

Boom, who will be a father in about 5 weeks, took the lead from the start and was joined by teammate Niels Wubben. Thijs van Amerongen had a poor start but was able to bridge up to Wubben, who couldn’t handle Boom’s pace. In the final lap Van Amerongen got rid of Wubben to take second. In the penultimate lap Boom crashed in a descent but his gap was sufficient enough that he could permit a small mistake. The battle for fourth place, between Thijs Al, Gerben de Knegt and Twan van den Brand, was more exciting. The latter one showed he is riding an excellent season to hold off the “veteran” for fourth.

“It is always nice to become national champion,” said Boom. “It is going constantly up and down and that makes the course ideal for me. In the beginning Niels (Wubben) was following me, which was ideal to make some pace on the asphalt but I noticed I was stronger as he couldn’t follow me on the climbs. I started here with one goal, the title, but of course you will look to the competition as well. Both Thijs (Van Amerongen) and Niels (Wubben) had strong results in the recent races. So it isn’t obvious that I would easily win here.”

Marianne Vos also unstoppable at Nationals
Marianne Vos (Rabobank) has won the Dutch national championships for the second consecutive year in a row. Vos soloed to the win from the first lap. European Champion Daphny van den Brand (WV Schijndel) and Sophie de Boer (Young Telenet-Fidea) completed the podium. The Brainwash girls Sanne van Paassen and Sabrina Stultiens rounded off the top five.

Sophie de Boer took the hole shot followed by Marianne Vos, Daphny van den Brand, Sanne van Paassen and Sabrina Stultiens. Halfway through the first lap Vos attacked and by the end of the second lap she already had a lead of more than 30 seconds on Van den Brand and even more on De Boer and Van Paassen. In the remainder of the race not much happened apart from the fact that De Boer dropped Van Paassen for third on this tough, technical course.

“I am very satisfied with my second national title in cyclocross,” said Vos. “Last year I felt a load come off me after finally winning the title. I attacked early to test the others. I knew this course was well suited for Daphny. When I had a gap I pulled through and was able to extend my lead. I had a perfect race, but for both the public as myself it was quite boring. But on a course like this it is normal. The strongest will win here normally.”

Lars van der Haar world class in U23 race
Top favorite Lars van der Haar has won the U23 race at the Dutch National Championships in Huijbergen. Van der Haar showed he is truly world class as he won with an almost two minute advantage over second place Davind van der Poel. Stan Godrie held off Michiel van der Heijden for the remaining podium spot. Emiel Dolfsma finished in fifth.

The World Champion got rid of his last rival, Stan Godrie, after the first lap. Godrie dropped back to a group with David van der Poel, Michiel van der Heijden, Corné van Kessel, Henk Jaap Moorlag and Emiel Dolfsma. Tijmen Eising – one of the other favorites – abandoned the race after a crash.

The battle for second remained exciting until the end. Six riders turned into the final lap to contest silver and bronze. Van der Haar already had a big lead and was celebrating his win all the way with a smile. On  the Nootjesberg, Van der Poel attacked, kept his small lead, and took a deserved second place. Godrie won the sprint for third from Van der Heijden a few seconds later.

“I was pretty nervous. I may be the top favorite but I still have to do it,” said Van der Haar. “In the beginning Godrie was able to follow me but I noticed on the Nootjesberg that I dropped everyone. From then on I went full gas. Each lap I kept the pressure on my pedals on the climbs and wherever else it was possible. My next goal? Trying to prolong my world title.”

Van der Poel best Junior at Dutch Nationals
Mathieu van der Poel has become, as expected, the new national junior champion. Tim Ariesen and Koen Weijers completed the podium. Martijn Budding and Bjorn van der Heijden rounded off the top five.

From the start the European Champion took command and extended his lead on the Nootjesberg and Tiestenberg. The battle for second place was more exciting, as Tim Ariesen, Koen Weijers, Martijn Budding, Pjotr van Beek and Bjorn van der Heijden all initially contending for the podium. In the end, Ariesen and Weijers were too strong for the others and battled the remainder of the race for silver and bronze.

For first year Van der Poel it is his first national junior title and his 19th win of the season. “I chose to attack from the start to build in some safety,” said the youngest son of Adrie van der Poel. “It is a tough course where you have to ride your own tempo. I am delighted to have won the title because anything can go wrong. From tomorrow the focus will be on the World Cup and the World Championships. I would like to win them both.”


1   Lars Boom (Rabobank Cycling Team)  1:04:05 
 2   Thijs Van Amerongen (AA Cycling Team)  00:22 
 3   Niels Wubben (AG2R - La Mondiale)  00:44 
 4   Twan Van Den Brand (WV Schijndel)  00:57 
 5   Thijs Al (AA Cycling Team)  01:12 
 6   Gerben De Knegt (Rabobank-Giant Off-Road Team)  01:45 
 7   Patrick Van Leeuwen (Acqua E Sapone)  02:22 
 8   Hans Becking  02:29 
 9   Eddy Van Yzendoorn (Jvr De Batauwers)  03:47 
 10   Jeroen Boelen  04:20 
 11   Kobus Herijgers (WV Schijndel)  04:33 
 12   Jordy Luisman (Crt Raalte)  05:12 
 13   Marco Minnaard  05:22 
 14   Bas Stamsnijder  -1 Lap 
 15   Liwald Doornbos  -2 Laps 
 16   Daan De Jonge  -4 Laps 
 17   Bas De Bruin   
 18   Jerry Kallenfels   
 19   Joost Spring In't Veld   
 20   Peter Woestenberg  -5 Laps 
 21   Alain Van Der Velde   
 22   Rick Van Der Zanden  -7 Laps 
 23   Jefte De Bruin   


1   Marianne Vos (Rabobank Ladies Team)  40:52 
 2   Daphny Van Den Brand (WV Schijndel)  01:08 
 3   Sophie De Boer (Young Telenet-Fidea)  01:18 
 4   Sanne Van Paassen (Brainwash)  01:33 
 5   Sabrina Stultiens (Brainwash)  01:58 
 6   Arenda Grimberg  02:38 
 7   Reza Hormes-Ravenstijn  02:58 
 8   Lana Verberne  03:38 
 9   Bianca Van Den Hoek  05:03 
 10   Dirkje Bazuin  -1 Lap 
 11   Iris Ockeloen (AA Drink -   
 12   Kim Banga (Rabo Lady Force)   
 13   Ilona Meter   
 14   Birgit Lavrijssen  -2 Laps 
 15   Linda Kroes   
 16   Marjolein Claessen  -3 Laps 
 17   Annet Eendhuizen   
 18   Marianne Alleleijn-Ten Haaf