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Cyclocross

Czech Mlynar takes World Cup opener at Wortegem-Petegem

It wasn’t supposed to happen like that. With the new 10-racecyclo-cross World Cup kicking off on Belgian turf and Belgians sweepingthe world’s podium for the past three years, one might suspect that itwould be a Belgian who would take top honors at Wortegem-Petegem,Belgium, on Sunday. But the Czech Republic’s Zdenek Mlynar emerged at the front of a 20-ridergroup to take the first round of the 2004/05 World Cup. Because it hadn't rained for days in the usually wet environs of thisFlemish hamlet, the course was unusually hard and fast. Indeed, coupledwith the UCI’s recent aversion to tough

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By Marcel Van Hoecke, Special to VeloNews

Even in white, everyone stayed clean in these conditions

Even in white, everyone stayed clean in these conditions

Photo: Marcel Van Hoecke

Zdenek Mlynar

Zdenek Mlynar

Photo: Marcel Van Hoecke

It wasn’t supposed to happen like that. With the new 10-racecyclo-cross World Cup kicking off on Belgian turf and Belgians sweepingthe world’s podium for the past three years, one might suspect that itwould be a Belgian who would take top honors at Wortegem-Petegem,Belgium, on Sunday.

But the Czech Republic’s Zdenek Mlynar emerged at the front of a 20-ridergroup to take the first round of the 2004/05 World Cup.

Because it hadn’t rained for days in the usually wet environs of thisFlemish hamlet, the course was unusually hard and fast. Indeed, coupledwith the UCI’s recent aversion to tough run-ups and large numbers of barriers,the race appeared to be more of a road race than a cyclo-cross event. Thespeed was tremendous and it was far from easy to leave the peloton behind.

Early on, Belgians Bart Wellens and Tom Vannoppen tried to break upthe field but without success. The main bunch stayed together for mostof the race, with weaker riders slipping off the back as the race woreon. Mylnat, too, was dropped, a victim of an early crash, but he managedto fight his way back to the front.

It was a large group that contested the final sprint, and that’s whereMylnar showed his strentgth outsprinting a cadre of five Belgians in thefinal meters. Sven Vanthourenhout and Mario De Clercq rounded out the topspots on the podium.

American Jonathan Page finished in the second group, 15 seconds offthe back of the winner’s bunch, while fellow American Jeremy Powers made a strong 2004 World Cup debut, finishing 36th at 58 seconds.

Results
1. Zdenek Mlynar (Cz), 59:22
2. Sven Vanthourenhout (B)
3. Mario De Clercq (B)
4. Ben Berden (B)
5. Sven Nijs (B)
6. Tom Vannoppen (B)
7. Kamil Ausbuher (Cz)
8. Camiel van den Bergh (Nl)
9. Richard Groenendaal (Nl)
10. Bart Wellens (B)
11. Peter Dlask (Cz)
12. Steve Chainel (F)
13. Christian Heule (Swi)
14. John Gadret (F)
15. Thorsten Struch (G)
16. Wilant Van Gils (Nl)
17. Michael Baumgartner (Swi)
18. Maarten Nijland (Nl)
19. Vladimir Kyzivat (Cz)
20. Enrico Franzoi (I)
21. Robert Glajza (Svk), at 0:15

Page

Page

Photo: Marcel Van Hoecke

22. Jonathan Page (USA)
23. Marco Bianco (I)
24. Peter Presslauer (A), at 0:24
25. Alessandro Fontana (I)
26. Jean-Baptiste Beraud (F)
27. Julien Belgy (F), at 0:28
28. Jiri Pospisil (B)
29. David Derepas (F), at 0:41
30. Jens Schwedler (G)
31. Peter van Santvliet (B), at 0:58
32. Matthew Ellis (GB)
33. Jens Reuker (G)
34. Isaac Suárez Fernández (Sp)
35. Arnaud Labbe (F)
36. Jeremy Powers (USA)
37. Mariusz Gil (Pol), at 01:06
38. Vaclaf Metlicka (Svk), at 01:36
39. Francis Mourey (F), at 01:40
40. Jan Ramsauer (Swi), at 01:42
41. Tadeusz Korzeniewski (Pol)
42. Beat Morf (Swi)
43. Jean-Pierre Leyten (Nl)
44. Tommy Nielsen (Dk)
45. Pierre Bernard Vaillant (F), at
46. Maik Muller (G), at 01:52
47. Martin Zlamalik (Cz), at 02:43
48. Radomir Simunek (Cz)
49. Dariusz Gil (Pol)
50. Anders Klinkby (Dk)
51. Adrian Timmis (B), at 03:53
52. Zdenek Stybar (Cz), at 04:46
53. Luca Damiani (I)
54. Beat Wabel (Swil)
55. Alessandro Di Tano (I), at 1 lap
 

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