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Close one! Summerhill takes second at world’s as Belgium’s Adams wins juniors title

Belgians and Americans got off to a great start at the world cyclo-cross championships in Hooglede-Gits, Belgium, Saturday, as host-country prospect Joeri Adams and U.S. rider Danny Summerhill sprinted to a tight finish in the junior men’s event. Summerhill battled back from a crash with two laps to go to earn second, as pre-race favorite Jiri Polnicky (Czech Republic) crossed the line one second later in third.

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By Rob Jones, VeloNews.com

Joeri Adams took the sprint, but Summerhill made a big impression in Belgium, too.

Joeri Adams took the sprint, but Summerhill made a big impression in Belgium, too.

Photo: Graham Watson

Belgians and Americans got off to a great start at the world cyclo-cross championships in Hooglede-Gits, Belgium, Saturday, as host-country prospect Joeri Adams and U.S. rider Danny Summerhill sprinted to a tight finish in the junior men’s event.

Summerhill battled back from a crash with two laps to go to earn second, as pre-race favorite Jiri Polnicky (Czech Republic) crossed the line one second later in third.

Although forecasts had called for rain, a strengthening sun poked through the clouds an hour before the start of the men’s 40-minute race. Rain throughout the week, however, left the ground soaked, and warming temperatures led to very slippery conditions.

With the race’s compressed 40-minute format, a good start was key, and Alessandro Calderan (Italy) attacked before the first set of stairs, opening up a 10-meter lead on the field. Summerhill was the first to respond, followed by Polnicky, Adams, Ramon Sinkeldam (Netherlands), Ole Quast (Germany) and Arnaud Jouffroy (France).

The stairs proved decisive.

The stairs proved decisive.

Photo: Rob Jones

As Calderan faded in the second lap, the six leaders gradually opened a gap on the rest of the field. Jouffroy was the first to be dropped from the group after Polnicky attacked as Adams and others opted for bike switches. Nonetheless, a lap of chasing re-formed a small group consisting of Adams, Summerhill, Quast, Sinkeldam and Polnicky – a group with a healthy lead.

On the fifth lap, with two to go, disaster struck for Summerhill when he went down hard in a corner after a descent.

“I crashed when my wheel washed out, like was happening to a lot of people,” explained Summerhill. “I didn’t think that I would be coming back. I hit a post pretty hard, knocked my helmet and bent my bars … I figured that was it. But I just got myself up, straightened my bars and got going.”

Summerhill joined with Jouffroy, and the duo caught back on for the final lap. Jouffroy was again dropped almost immediately, but Summerhill hung on. Polnicky, knowing that he would be at a disadvantage in a sprint, attacked in the early part of the lap, but could not rid himself of the rest of the leaders. The Dutch rider, Sinkeldam, decided to make his move on the first climb, opening a small gap that Polnicky closed, taking Adams and Summerhill with him.

When the riders turned onto the asphalt 200 meters from the line, Adams attacked, and only Summerhill was able to respond, although he could not come by the Belgian.

“It was interesting … maybe there could have been a different result without the crash,” said Summerhill. “It definitely took a lot out of me, because I banged my leg pretty good. But to get a medal at the world’s is good; I’m happy to prove that America can do something here.”

Photo: Graham Watson

Results
1. Joeri Adams (Belgium) in 41:18
2. Danny Summerhill (USA) s.t.
3. Jiri Polnicky (Czech Republic) at 0:01
4. Ramon Sinkeldam (Netherlands) 0:02
5. Ole Quast (Germany) 0:11
6. Arnaud Jouffroy (France) 0:32
7. Alessandro Calderan (Italy) 0:44
8. Rob Van Der Velde (Netherlands) 0:58
9. Marek Konwa (Poland) 1:06
10. Peter Sagan (Slovakia) 1:10

Other North Americans
30. Nick Keough (USA) 3:25
33. Carson Miller (USA) 3:36
44. Jerome Townsend (USA) 5:08
49. Sean Worsech (USA) 5:48
52. Spencer Smitheman (Canada) 5:56

Complete results

Photo Gallery

Results

UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships

Juniors

1. Joeri Adams (B), 41:18

2. Danny Summerhill (USA), same time

3. Jiri Polnicky (Cze), at 0:01

4. Ramon Sinkeldam (Ned), at 0:02

5. Ole Quast (G), at 0:11

6. Arnaud Jouffroy (F), at 0:33

7. Alessandro Calderan (I), at 0:45

8. Rob Van Der Velde (Ned), at 0:58

9. Marek Konwa (Pol), at 1:06

10. Peter Sagan (Slo), at 1:11

11. Elia Silvestri (I), at 1:12

12. Kevin Eeckhout (B), at 1:17

13. Jonathan Mcevoy (GB), at 1:28

14. Marcel Meisen (G), at 1:36

15. Matthieu Boulo (F), at 1:42

16. Filip Adel (Cze), at 1:45

17. Vincent Baestaens (B), at 1:56

18. Stef Boden (B), at 2:05

19. Lubomir Petrus (Cze), at 2:20

20. Thomas Girard (F), at 2:28

21. Twan Van Den Brand (Ned), at 2:32

22. Petr Marvan (Cze), at 2:36

23. Fabian Danner (G), at 2:39

24. Matthias Rupp (Swi), at 2:47

25. Jim Aernouts (B), at 2:55

26. Thomas Lemaitre (F), at 2:57

27. Marian Simora (Slo), at 3:01

28. David Fletcher (GB), at 3:11

29. Kevin Leveghi (I), at 3:24

30. Nick Keough (USA), at 3:26

31. Garikoitz Bravo Oiarbide (Sp), at 3:29

32. Scott Thwaites (GB), at 3:30

33. Carson Miller (USA), at 3:36

34. Valentin Scherz (Swi), at 3:48

35. Jordy Beuker (Ned), at 3:52

36. Thibault Taboury (F), at 4:02

37. Arnaud Grand (Swi), at 4:09

38. Josef Rauber (G), at 4:19

39. Vincent Dias Dos Santos (Lux), at 4:39

40. Victor Cabedo (Sp), at 4:51

41. Giuseppe Michieletto (I), at 4:51

42. Alex Paton (GB), at 4:51

43. Max Walsleben (G), at 5:08

44. Jerome Townsend (USA), at 5:09

45. Kacper Szczepaniak (Pol), at 5:09

46. Kamil Markowski (Pol), at 5:09

47. Peter Frei (Swi), at 5:12

48. Miroslaw Frackowiak (Pol), at 5:37

49. Sean Worsech (USA), at 5:49

50. Pierre Kaeslin (Swi), at 5:52

51. Pit Schlechter (Lux), at 5:56

52. Spencer Smitheman (Can), at 5:57

53. Geert Van Der Horst (Ned), at 6:25

54. Jon Ander Manjon Alvarez (Sp), at 7:57

55. Piotr Antkowiak (Pol), at 8:42

56. Morten Gregersen (Den), at 9:02

DNF Marek Benda (Cze)

DSQ Eduardo Recasens Gasso (Sp)

DSQ Mattias Nilsson (Swe)