Meeusenwith game face on at Laarne. © Kurt van Hout

Meeusenwith game face on at Laarne. © Kurt van Hout

NOMMAY, FRANCE – Tom Meeusen (Telenet-Fidea) took his first World Cup win of the 2013-2014 season at the final installment of the series in Nommay.

In a sprint finish over home-crowd favorite Francis Mourey (fdj.Fr), the win propels Meeusen onto the list of possible contenders for the title at the Cyclocross World Championships in Hoogerheide, Netherlands, on February 1.

Mourey initially took to the head of the race, but Meeusen put in an effort in the middle of the first lap, gaining some distance on a group of about 10 chasers. Philipp Walsleben (BKCP-Powerplus) and Corne Van Kessel (Telenet-Fidea) emerged from the group the next time around to join Meeusen with Mourey not far behind.

By the fourth lap, the dust had settled and Mourey had reattached to the leaders. First to go was Van Kessel, and at times it seemed that Meeusen had overextended himself, dropping just off the wheel of Mourey as Walsleben took to upping the pace. Going into lap six, however, the three riders were once again together, this time with Mourey attempting to break away, fueled by the cheer of the French crowds. The few seconds gained, however were not lasting as a stubborn Walsleben and Meeusen refused to let the Frenchman go.

With one-to-go a resurrected Meeusen took to the front again, driving the pace.  Mourey and Walsleben would not go down without a fight as the three changed positioning, going shoulder-to-shoulder through the last lap. Mourey tried hard to hold on to the lead position going onto the tarmac, but Meeusen came around in the final meters, winning by less than a bike’s length. Walsleben finished third, six seconds behind, moving up to second place in the final series standings.

Following about a minute behind for much of the race, series leader Lars van der Haar (Rabobank Development Team) crossed the line in fourth and retained his series lead and the 2014 World Cup Title. Niels Albert (BKCP-Powerplus) had enough points to hold on to third overall, despite finishing twelfth for the day.

When questioned about the possibility of winning the upcoming World Championships, Meeusen pondered whether it was bad luck to win just before Worlds, but added that every win is good.

Check out coverage of the women’s race here, and a rundown of the American presence in Nommay here.

Elite Men UCI World Cup #7 - Cyclo-cross de Nommay Results

1Tom MEEUSENBEL261:00:45200200
2Francis MOUREYFRA341:00:45160160
3Philipp WALSLEBENGER271:00:50140140
4Lars VAN DER HAARNED231:01:46120120
5Radomir SIMUNEKCZE311:02:03110110
6Kevin PAUWELSBEL301:02:08100100
7Wietse BOSMANSBEL231:02:159090
8Rob PEETERSBEL291:02:158080
9Bart AERNOUTSBEL321:02:247070
10Klaas VANTORNOUTBEL321:02:366060
11Corne VAN KESSELNED231:02:495858
12Niels ALBERTBEL281:02:555656
13Marcel MEISENGER251:02:565454
14Eddy VAN IJZENDOORNNED291:02:575252
15Jeremy POWERSUSA311:03:115050
16Enrico FRANZOIITA321:03:194848
17Fabien CANALFRA251:03:264646
18Bryan FALASCHIITA231:03:274444
19Simon ZAHNERSUI311:03:384242
20Bart WELLENSBEL361:03:434040
21Martin BINACZE311:03:493939
22Marcel WILDHABERSUI291:03:563838
23Jonathan PAGEUSA381:03:573737
24Arnaud GRANDSUI241:04:133636
25Niels WUBBENNED261:04:293535
26Nicolas BAZINFRA311:04:473434
28Guillaume PERROTFRA271:05:083232
29Patrick VAN LEEUWENNED291:05:183131
30Micki VAN EMPELNED241:05:203030
31Timothy JOHNSONUSA371:05:222929
32Cristian COMINELLIITA261:05:312828
33Mariusz GILPOL311:05:412727
34Sascha WEBERGER261:05:532626
35Ian FIELDGBR281:06:062525
36Lubomir PETRUSCZE241:06:072424
37Thijs ALNED341:06:242323
38Steve CHAINELFRA311:06:322222
39Thijs VAN AMERONGENNED281:06:372121
40Julien PIONFRA281:06:482020
41Elia SILVESTRIITA241:06:531919
42Christian HELMIGLUX331:07:011818
43Ondrej BAMBULACZE271:07:011717
44Marco BIANCOITA321:07:071616
45Ryan TREBONUSA331:07:081515
46Laurent COLOMBATTOFRA361:07:091414
47Andreas MOSERSUI301:07:361313
48Lukas WINTERBERGSUI261:07:531212
49Twan VAN DEN BRANDNED251:08:151111
50Robert GAVENDASVK261:08:371010
51Michael (JR) SCHWEIZERGER2355
52Emil HEKELECZE3755
53Ole QUASTGER2555
56Vladimir KYZIVATCZE3255
57Damien MOUGELFRA2955
58Hikaru KOSAKAJPN2655
59Michal MALêKCZE2555
60Jeremy DURRINUSA2655
61Wolfram KURSCHATGER3955
62Martin HARINGSVK2855
63Alexander REVELLNZL2955
65Angus EDMONDNZL3855
66Christoph AMBROZIAKGER3155