Events

Jingle Cross: Van Aert puts on another show

Only a few days removed from a dominant Cross Vegas victory, Wout van Aert nabs another World Cup win on American soil at Jingle Cross

Only a few days removed from claiming the first World Cup win of the season at Cross Vegas, Wout van Aert made it two for two Saturday evening in Iowa City at Jingle Cross.

Racing on a broken toe sustained in a crash in Las Vegas, the Crelan – Vastgoedservice rider was nevertheless the class of the field yet again, overcoming an early mechanical that set him back several places in the second lap and ultimately working his way to the head of the race and then soloing clear for the win. After eight laps in intense heat, the 22-year-old Belgian crossed the finish line 39 seconds ahead of Kevin Pauwels (Marlux – Napoleon Games). Laurens Sweeck of Era – MurProtec rounded out the podium in third, 56 seconds behind the race leader.

Top 10

  • 1. Wout VAN AERT, (BEL), 1:02:47
  • 2. Kevin PAUWELS, (BEL), 1:03:26
  • 3. Laurens SWEECK, (BEL), 1:03:43
  • 4. Jim AERNOUTS, (BEL), 1:04:17
  • 5. Gianni VERMEERSCH, (BEL), 1:04:18
  • 6. Corne VAN KESSEL, (NED), 1:04:32
  • 7. Quinten HERMANS, (BEL), 1:04:35
  • 8. Dieter VANTHOURENHOUT, (BEL), 1:04:44
  • 9. Toon AERTS, (BEL), 1:04:46
  • 10. Stephen HYDE, (USA), 1:04:46

Toon Aerts led through first lap with several of his Telenet – Fidea teammates grouped near the front as well to keep the pressure high on the up-and-down course. Van Aert hung near the head of affairs not far off the leader until issues with his chain forced him to dismount and make a quick mechanical adjustment midway through the second lap. By the time he was back on the bike, the reigning world champion had dropped back almost to middle of the pack.

Marlux – Napoleon Games’ Michael Vanthourenhout opened up a gap off the front towards the end of lap two as van Aert began working his way back into striking distance.

The field began to string out considerably in the third lap, with Vanthourenhout and Quinten Hermans (Telenet Fidea) leading into lap four. Vanthourenhout briefly dropped Hermans during the fourth lap, but he was soon caught up by a surging Sweeck, with Hermans and van Aert not far behind.

Sweeck took a small gap into the fifth lap with van Aert and Vanthourenhout riding together in pursuit. Pauwels, meanwhile, was working his way through the chasers all the time, beginning the sixth lap in fourth position as Vanthourenhout began to fade off of van Aert’s wheel.

It was in lap six that van Aert made the decisive move, delivering a powerful uphill attack to charge past Sweeck and then cementing his advantage on a tricky downhill. Crossing the start-finish line to begin the penultimate lap, he enjoyed a 12-second gap over Sweeck and a 28-second advantage over Pauwels, who had worked his way up to third.

Pauwels was able to overtake Sweeck in the final two laps, but nobody came particularly close to catching van Aert. Broken toe and all, the world champ rolled over the finish line for the final time over half a minute ahead of Pauwels.

“I didn’t expect it,” Pauwels said of taking the victory with an injured toe. “The last few days were hectic. In the beginning of the race there was also a mechanical. I got a little bit back in the bunch and afterwards I came at my own pace.

“I saw that I was making good lap times and coming back to the front. In the end, I was suffering throughout my body.”

Van Aert offered a ringing endorsement of World Cup racing on American soil after his second-straight victory.

“It’s a big win and I have to thank everyone who supported me in this preparation and also the crowd who came out. It was amazing, I think I’ve never seen so many people cheering,” he said.

“I hope next year we can make it even longer staying here, maybe for two weeks and we can do a few races in that period. I think it’s an awesome idea, and I think the guys who were here would say the same.”

Results

  • 1. Wout VAN AERT, (BEL), 1:02:47
  • 2. Kevin PAUWELS, (BEL), 1:03:26
  • 3. Laurens SWEECK, (BEL), 1:03:43
  • 4. Jim AERNOUTS, (BEL), 1:04:17
  • 5. Gianni VERMEERSCH, (BEL), 1:04:18
  • 6. Corne VAN KESSEL, (NED), 1:04:32
  • 7. Quinten HERMANS, (BEL), 1:04:35
  • 8. Dieter VANTHOURENHOUT, (BEL), 1:04:44
  • 9. Toon AERTS, (BEL), 1:04:46
  • 10. Stephen HYDE, (USA), 1:04:46
  • 11. Ian FIELD, (GBR), 1:05:07
  • 12. Steve CHAINEL, (FRA), 1:05:23
  • 13. Vincent BAESTAENS, (BEL), 1:05:32
  • 14. Tom MEEUSEN, (BEL), 1:05:39
  • 15. Rob PEETERS, (BEL), 1:05:43
  • 16. Thijs VAN AMERONGEN, (NED), 1:05:49
  • 17. Daan HOEYBERGHS, (BEL), 1:06:02
  • 18. Diether SWEECK, (BEL), 1:06:28
  • 19. Tim MERLIER, (BEL), 1:06:36
  • 20. Michael VANTHOURENHOUT, (BEL), 1:06:49
  • 21. David VAN DER POEL, (NED), 1:06:53
  • 22. Dan TIMMERMAN, (USA), 1:06:57
  • 23. Kerry WERNER, (USA), 1:07:06
  • 24. Jeremy MARTIN, (CAN), 1:07:15
  • 25. Philipp WALSLEBEN, (GER), 1:07:25
  • 26. Anthony CLARK, (USA), 1:07:25
  • 27. Tobin ORTENBLAD, (USA), 1:07:26
  • 28. Daan SOETE, (BEL), 1:07:42
  • 29. Allen KRUGHOFF, (USA), 1:07:55
  • 30. Marcel MEISEN, (GER), 1:07:56
  • 31. Jonathan PAGE, (USA), 1:07:57
  • 32. Matthieu BOULO, (FRA), 1:08:12
  • 33. Michael VAN DEN HAM, (CAN), 1:08:33
  • 34. James DRISCOLL, (USA), 1:08:43
  • 35. Andrew DILLMAN, (USA), 1:09:14
  • 36. Travis LIVERMON, (USA), 1:09:32
  • 37. Justin LINDINE, (USA), 1:09:52
  • 38. Derek ZANDSTRA, (CAN), 1:10:03
  • 39. Curtis WHITE, (USA), 1:10:18
  • 40. Craig RICHEY, (CAN), 1:11:00
  • 41. Geoff KABUSH, (CAN)
  • 42. Jeremy DURRIN, (USA)
  • 43. Jeremy POWERS, (USA)
  • 44. Daniel SUMMERHILL, (USA)
  • 45. Antonin MARECAILLE, (FRA)
  • 46. Mark MCCONNELL, (CAN)
  • 47. Benjamin SONNTAG, (GER)
  • 48. Christian HELMIG, (LUX)
  • 49. Aaron SCHOOLER, (CAN)
  • 50. Troy WELLS, (USA)
  • 51. Yoann CORBIHAN, (FRA)
  • 52. Christopher AITKEN, (AUS)
  • 53. Trevor O’DONNELL, (CAN)