Events

Essen: van der Poel and Cant are victorious

Beobank-Corendon teammates European champion Mathieu van der Poel and world champion Sanne Cant were triumphant on Saturday in Essen, Belgium.

European champion Mathieu van der Poel (Beobank-Corendon) was triumphant yet again on Saturday in Essen, Belgium at the latest race in the DVV Verzekeringen Trofee. Laurens Sweeck (ERA-Circus), who was able to stay with van der Poel for about half the race, finished second with Toon Aerts (Telenet Fidea) in third.

The course in Essen was not a terribly muddy affair with only a few spots on the course requiring the riders to run. Temperatures were in the high 30s for the elite races. The race organizers had an interesting feature for providing television coverage on Saturday as they used a drone to capture wide and expansive shots of the course.

Lars van der Haar (Telenet Fidea) led the elite men off the pavement and onto the course with van der Poel tucked-in right behind him. Van der Poel soon took over the lead and prompted to turn the throttle to the maximum early on. At the end of the opening lap, Tom Meeusen (Beobank-Corendon) and Aerts had joined van der Poel in the lead and the trio had a gap over the other riders.

Many of the elite men attempted to ride a few of the heavy mud sections on the course during the opening couple of laps, as they had fresh legs. Meeusen was attempting to slog through the mud on lap two and got caught in a deep section and fell. This dropped him from the lead and later in the lap, van der Poel dispatched Aerts to be alone.

However, something we have not seen too often occurred on lap three. Sweeck was able to bridge to van der Poel. Normally once van der Poel gets into the lead alone, the rest are racing for second, but Sweeck’s ability to bridge to van der Poel showed possibly the Dutchman was not on a great day.

Behind the two leaders, the Telenet Fidea duo of Corne van Kessel and Aerts were riding together with Tim Merlier (Crelan-Charles) and Michael Vanthourenhout (Marlux-Napolean Games) leading a chase group.

Van der Poel dropped Sweeck on the fifth of nine of laps. Sweeck had been hanging on to van der Poel’s wheel by a thread since he bridged up to him. During the laps Sweeck was with van der Poel, the Belgian rarely took a turn at the front.

The second half of the race was a bit of a sleepy affair from a spectating standpoint as van der Poel and Sweeck were locked into the top-2 positions. Aerts and Kessel rode together until the final lap when Aerts was finally able to jump ahead.

After a great start, van der Haar drifted into the back half of the top-10 for most of the race, but was able to surge at the end and finish fifth.

Van der Poel extended his lead in the general classification of the DVV Trofee, which is calculated based on time instead of points, to over three minutes.

World champion Wout van Aert (Crelan-Charles) was absent from Saturday’s race, as he is taking a break from racing to train and recharge for the second half of the year.

Elite men top-10

  • 1. Mathieu Van Der Poel, (NED) BEOBANK-CORENDON, 1:00:28
  • 2. Laurens Sweeck, (BEL) ERA-CIRCUS, 1:00:51
  • 3. Toon Aerts, (BEL) TELENET FIDEA LIONS, 1:01:10
  • 4. Corne Van Kessel, (NED) TELENET FIDEA LIONS, 1:01:17
  • 5. Lars Van Der Haar, (NED) TELENET FIDEA LIONS, 1:01:32
  • 6. Michael Vanthourenhout, (BEL) MARLUX – NAPOLEON GAMES, 1:01:33
  • 7. Jens Adams, (BEL) PAUWELS SAUZEN – VASTGOEDSERVICE, 1:01:41
  • 8. Tom Meeusen, (BEL) BEOBANK-CORENDON, 1:01:56
  • 9. Tim Merlier, (BEL) CRELAN – CHARLES, 1:02:05
  • 10. Jim Aernouts, (BEL) TELENET FIDEA LIONS, 1:02:32
  • Cant solos to win, Compton retains GC lead

    World champion Sanne Cant (Beobank-Corendon) took the holeshot and didn’t look back to capture another victory this season. She has shown there has been no curse of the rainbow bands for her. Nikki Brammerier (Boels-Dolmans) finished second with American Kaite Compton (KFC Racing/Trek/Panache) finishing third. Compton retained her lead in the general classification.

    A double-set of barriers came early in the course in Essen, making a good start important. After the opening barrier section, Helen Wyman (Kona) got caught up in a crash, which put her on the backfoot from the rest of the race. She would ultimately finish outside of the top-10 in 15th place.

    Cant opened a gap in the opening lap, but Brammeier was determined not to let her ride away with the victory that easily and chased her down. Ceylin Del Carmen also briefly joined Brammeier and Cant, but was unable to hold the pace and soon dropped off from the lead.

    Compton passed Del Carmen early in the second lap and soon made it three riders at the front of the race. Behind them, former world champion Pauline Ferrand-Prevot (Canyon-SRAM) was charging toward the front of the race. It was her first time racing cyclocross in a few years and she was making up considerable ground after having to deal with having a last row start due to no UCI points.

    On the third lap of what would be five, Cant managed to gap both Brammeier and Compton through a mud section and it would turn out to be the winning move. At the end of the lap, she had a handful of seconds over Brammeier with Compton 10 seconds down. A chase group of four had formed behind with Ferrand-Prevot, Ellen van Loy (Telenet Fidea), Loes Sels (Crelan-Charles), and Sophie de Boer (Parkhotel Valkenburg-Destil).

    Over the final two laps, both Brammeier and Compton would lose time to Cant and the top-3 would remain unchanged. Behind them, the battle for a top-5 placing was fierce. Entering the final lap, the chase group was in pieces on the pavement section with Ferrand-Prevot pushing the pace. She would hold on to a gap over the others for the final lap and secure a fourth-place finish on the day. The result was impressive considering she has not raced cyclocross in a little while.

    Sels came home in fifth with de Boer right behind her in sixth.

    The DVV Verzekeringen Trofee continues on December 16th with the Scheldercross in Antwerp, Belgium. Look for Compton and van der Poel to defend their general classification leads. The series has only reached the midway point with four races completed and four races still to go, so although both riders have considerable leads in the GC, the title is far from secure.

    Elite women full results

    • 1. Sanne Cant, (BEL), 39:34
    • 2. Nikki Brammeier, (GBR), 39:43
    • 3. Katherine Compton, (USA), 39:59
    • 4. Pauline Ferrand Prevot, (FRA), 40:16
    • 5. Loes Sels, (BEL), 40:30
    • 6. Sophie De Boer, (NED), 40:32
    • 7. Ellen Van Loy, (BEL), 40:37
    • 8. Evie Richards, (GBR), 40:42
    • 9. Ceylin Del Carmen Alvarado, (NED), 40:52
    • 10. Kim Van De Steene, (BEL), 40:55
    • 11. Maud Kaptheijns, (NED), 41:03
    • 12. Fleur Nagengast, (NED), 41:05
    • 13. Laura Verdonschot, (BEL), 41:09
    • 14. Inge Van Der Heijden, (NED), 41:17
    • 15. Helen Wyman, (GBR), 41:21
    • 16. Emma White, (USA), 41:53
    • 17. Karen Verhestraeten, (BEL), 42:14
    • 18. Jolien Verschueren, (BEL), 42:58
    • 19. Harriet Harnden, (GBR), 43:21
    • 20. Shana Maes, (BEL), 43:26
    • 21. Anna Kay, (GBR), 43:33
    • 22. Pauline Delhaye, (FRA), 43:33
    • 23. Geerte Hoeke, (NED), 43:44
    • 24. Manon Bakker, (NED), 44:01
    • 25. Esther Van Der Burg, (NED), 44:04
    • 26. Lindy Van Anrooij, (NED), 44:24
    • 27. Veerle Goossens, (NED), 45:03
    • 28. Sophie Thackray, (GBR), 45:27
    • 29. Natalie Redmond, (AUS), 46:17
    • 30. Meg De Bruyne, (BEL), 46:21
    • 31. Corey Coogan Cisek, (USA), 46:33
    • 32. Emily Wadsworth, (GBR), 46:39
    • 33. Kaat Hannes, (BEL), 46:56
    • 34. Elodie Kuijper, (NED), 47:07
    • 35. Caren Commissaris, (BEL), 47:19
    • 36. Tinne Vermeiren, (BEL), 47:28
    • 37. Kristien Nelen, (BEL), 47:38
    • 38. Tessa Zwaenepoel, (BEL), 47:55
    • 39. Tine Rombouts, (BEL), 48:19
    • 40. Hannah Van Boven, (NED)
    • 41. Tess Van Loy, (BEL)
    • 42. Sabine Hey, (NED)
    • 43. B√©atrice Godart, (LUX)
    • 44. Sara Beeckmans, (BEL)
    • 45. Mieke Docx, (BEL)
    • 46. Anke Van Rompay, (BEL)

    Elite men full results

    • 1. Mathieu Van Der Poel, (NED) BEOBANK-CORENDON, 1:00:28
    • 2. Laurens Sweeck, (BEL) ERA-CIRCUS, 1:00:51
    • 3. Toon Aerts, (BEL) TELENET FIDEA LIONS, 1:01:10
    • 4. Corne Van Kessel, (NED) TELENET FIDEA LIONS, 1:01:17
    • 5. Lars Van Der Haar, (NED) TELENET FIDEA LIONS, 1:01:32
    • 6. Michael Vanthourenhout, (BEL) MARLUX – NAPOLEON GAMES, 1:01:33
    • 7. Jens Adams, (BEL) PAUWELS SAUZEN – VASTGOEDSERVICE, 1:01:41
    • 8. Tom Meeusen, (BEL) BEOBANK-CORENDON, 1:01:56
    • 9. Tim Merlier, (BEL) CRELAN – CHARLES, 1:02:05
    • 10. Jim Aernouts, (BEL) TELENET FIDEA LIONS, 1:02:32
    • 11. Kevin Pauwels, (BEL) MARLUX – NAPOLEON GAMES, 1:02:35
    • 12. Daan Soete, (BEL) TELENET FIDEA LIONS, 1:02:54
    • 13. Gianni Vermeersch, (BEL) STEYLAERTS – BETFIRST, 1:03:17
    • 14. Stephen Hyde, (USA) CANNONDALE P/B CYCLOCROSSWORLD.COM, 1:03:20
    • 15. Dieter Vanthourenhout, (BEL) MARLUX – NAPOLEON GAMES, 1:03:25
    • 16. Michael Boro҆, (CZE) PAUWELS SAUZEN – VASTGOEDSERVICE, 1:04:47
    • 17. Gosse Van Der Meer, (NED) TARTELETTO – ISOREX, 1:05:12
    • 18. Stan Godrie, (NED) CRELAN – CHARLES, 1:05:42
    • 19. Kenneth Van Compernolle, (BEL) TARTELETTO – ISOREX, 1:06:10
    • 20. Stijn Huys, (BEL)
    • 21. Niels Koyen, (BEL)