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Vos takes women’s ‘cross title

For the second time in 24 hours the Dutch national anthem of Wilhelmus was played for the assembled crowds at Zeddam, in the Netherlands, as the host country celebrated another victory at the World Cyclo-cross Championships, after Marianne Vos outsprinted defending champion, German Hanka Kupfernagel, to take the women’s title on Sunday. Indeed, Dutch riders dominated the women’s event as Daphny van den Brand and Mirjam Melchers-van Poppel rounded out the top-four. The top North American result was recorded by U.S. champion Anne Knapp in ninth, while pre-race podium hopeful Lyne Bessette

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By Robert Jones, Special to VeloNews.com

Photo: Graham Watson

For the second time in 24 hours the Dutch national anthem of Wilhelmus was played for the assembled crowds at Zeddam, in the Netherlands, as the host country celebrated another victory at the World Cyclo-cross Championships, after Marianne Vos outsprinted defending champion, German Hanka Kupfernagel, to take the women’s title on Sunday.

Indeed, Dutch riders dominated the women’s event as Daphny van den Brand and Mirjam Melchers-van Poppel rounded out the top-four. The top North American result was recorded by U.S. champion Anne Knapp in ninth, while pre-race podium hopeful Lyne Bessette (Can) could managed no better than 10th after coming down with a cold earlier in the week.

From the gun
The race was almost immediately whittled down to three riders, as Vos, Kupfernagel and Van den Brand charged out of the main field soon after the start.

The trio of Van den Brand, Kupfernagel and Vos quickly gapped the rest of the field.

The trio of Van den Brand, Kupfernagel and Vos quickly gapped the rest of the field.

Photo: Graham Watson

The trio had a 10 second gap on Melcher-van Poppel halfway through the first lap, with Britain’s Helen Wyman 20 seconds back in fifth, and Bessette already struggling mid-pack. The Canadian champion improved to sixth by mid-race, but then slowed over the final laps.

It looked like the race might come down to a three-way sprint, until van den Brand flatted in the fourth lap and lost contact with her two companions. At that point, the workload shifted to Kupfernagel.

Vos, the 2004 world junior road champion, admitted that she got a free ride from her German rival.

“At the beginning there was no real tactic except to start fast, and we were happy to have two Dutch and one German at the front. When Daphny flatted all I had to do was stay on Kupfernagel’s wheel,” Vos said. “Either Daphny would come back or Hanka would have to pull me.”

Kupfernagel understood the dynamic, but figured her odds were better.

Vos merely had to sit on the defending champion's wheel

Vos merely had to sit on the defending champion’s wheel

Photo: Graham Watson

“When Van den Brand punctured it was normal that I would have to go to the front,” Kupfernagel said, “but I also believed that it was better for me to be against one Dutch rider than two.”

Vos may have hoped that her teammate would come back, but Van den Brand knew that she wasn’t going to.

“I had to ride the puncture to the pit, and after that I didn’t think it was possible to come back,” she said. “I would have had to take too many risks, so I focused on keeping third place.”

Coming out of the final corner for the long, paved false flat straightaway to the finish, Vos was glued to Kupfernagel’s wheel, until she cut across to the left side of the road with 150 meters to go. Kupfernagel was able to get on her wheel, but couldn’t come round.

Race Notes
Bessette was disappointed but philosophical. “I got a cold on Wednesday; I couldn’t breath during the race. I was prepared; the speed was what I thought it would be. I was ready. I’m happy with my race under the conditions, but I know I’m better than that (10th).”Vos has literally just joined the Senior ranks, after winning a world title on the road in 2004 as and finishing second at the Road world’s as a Junior in 2005. She currently races, road, track, cyclo-cross, mountain bike and speedskates (in her spare time). Crowd numbers have been quite high all weekend, with more than 20,000 in attendance for the women’s race.

Results- UCI World Championships
Women
1. Marianne Vos (Netherlands) 39:14.9
2. Hanka Kupfernagel (Germany) at 0:00.4
3. Daphny Van Den Brand (Netherlands), at 00:52.1
4. Mirjam Melchers-Van Poppel (Netherlands), at 01:16.6
5. Helen Wyman (Great Britain), at 02:22.7
6. Maryline Salvetat (France), at 02:26.6
7. Nadia Triquet-Claude (France), at 02:29.0
8. Birgit Hollmann (Germany), at 02:30.4
9. Ann Knapp (United States), at 02:31.1
10. Lyne Bessette (Canada), at 02:40.7
FULL RESULTS

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Results

Results- UCI World Championships

Women

1. Marianne Vos (Netherlands) 39:14.9

2. Hanka Kupfernagel (Germany) at 0:00.4

3. Daphny van den Brand (Netherlands), at 00:52.1

4. Mirjam Melchers-Van Poppel (Netherlands), at 01:16.6

5. Helen Wyman (Great Britain), at 02:22.7

6. Maryline Salvetat (France), at 02:26.6

7. Nadia Triquet-Claude (France), at 02:29.0

8. Birgit Hollmann (Germany), at 02:30.4

9. Ann Knapp (United States), at 02:31.1

10. Lyne Bessette (Canada), at 02:40.7

11. Arenda Grimberg (Netherlands), at 02:43.8

12. Christel Ferrier-Brunau (France), at 02:49.7

13. Reza Hormes-Ravenstijn (Netherlands), at 02:51.6

14. Laurence Leboucher (France), at 02:54.3

15. Anja Nobus (Belgium), at 03:03.9

16. Kathy Ingels (Belgium), at 03:05.9

17. Rosa Maria Bravo Soba (Spain), at 03:25.5

18. Annabella Stropparo (Italy), at 03:25.6

19. Susanne Juranek (Germany), at 03:42.7

20. Corinne Sempe (France), at 03:44.8

21. Daniela Bresciani (Italy), at 03:56.6

22. Wendy Simms (Canada), at 04:02.8

23. Veerle Ingels (Belgium), at 04:03.0

24. Rhonda Mazza (United States), at 04:08.5

25. Barbara Howe (United States), at 04:11.0

26. Hilde Quintens (Belgium), at 04:11.0

27. Monica Brunati (Italy), at 04:16.9

28. Nicole Kampeter (Germany), at 04:22.3

29. Sue Thomas (Great Britain), at 04:23.0

30. Elisabetta Borgia (Italy), at 04:23.5

31. Milena Cavani (Italy), at 04:25.7

32. Stacey Spencer (Canada), at 04:28.4

33. Christine Vardaros (United States), at 04:50.8

34. Joyce Vanderbeken (Belgium), at 05:07.9

35. Louise Robinson (Great Britain), at 05:11.4

36. Maureen Bruno (United States), at 05:19.9

37. Rocio Gamonal (Spain), at 05:35.0

38. Ayako Toyooka (Japan), at 05:35.3

39. Carina Ketonen (Finland), at 05:35.4

40. Ruth Moll (Spain), at 05:50.3

41. Mika Ogishima (Japan), at 07:25.8

42. Ikumi Tajika (Japan), at 07:56.5

DNF Britt Jochems (Netherlands)