Vos gets easy victory in front of friendly fans in Dutch ‘cross event
Rob Peeters (Telenet-Fidea) opened his account in the 2012-2013 cyclo-cross season with a victory in the Netherlands on Thursday, in the Internationale Centrumcross van Surhuisterveen.
The Belgian, runner-up in the World Championships last season though sometimes overshadowed by his more heralded compatriots, topped the podium ahead of Dutchman Thijs Van Amerongen (AA Drink) and Philip Walsleben (BKCP-Powerplus).
Peeters formed an early leading group with his eventual podium-mates, along with fourth place finisher Lars Van der Haar (Rabobank Offroad) and Jim Aernouts (Sunweb-Revor).
Lars Boom was competing in his first ‘cross event of the season, showcasing the Blanco Pro Cycling name for the first time, albeit in the red and blue colours of Dutch national cyclo-cross champion. The former world champion figured to be a factor in the race but suffered a mechanical problem on the first lap and had a long run to the pits, taking him out of contention early. Boom would eventually finish outside the top ten.
With two laps remaining, Peeters upped the pace, grabbing the lead from Walsleben and putting Van der Haar and Van Amerongen under pressure. He rode solo to the finish, while Van Amerongen came back on the German BKCP-Powerplus rider behind.
The Belgian said that energy saved early in the race helped him benefit at the end. “It was a very tactical race. I tried to be as economical as possible,” he explained. “I was tenth in the field early, but I could tell I was moving smoothly. We rode for a while alternating five or six riders in the lead. I quickly noted that Walsleben was showing his skill in certain sections, so I stuck close to him.
“Van Amerongen attacked first and then Walsleben. There was a long running stretch, and it was hard, but it suited me well. [On the penultimate lap] I immediately got a gap and preserved it to the finish. Of course I am delighted with the victory but I did not need it to know that I am riding well. I’ve been feeling alright for a while and I will try to hold on to it as long as possible.”
With many of the sport’s stars not making the trip to the Netherlands, with another World Cup round taking place Sunday, Van Amerongen noted the few chances to ride in front of friendly Dutch crowds as his primary reason for taking the start. The AA Drink rider was pleased with his runner-up spot.
“For me this is a good result, behind Rob Peeters,” Van Amerongen stated on the team website. “It’s a slightly smaller race than what I normally ride, but to achieve a podium always gives you a good feeling.”
In the women’s event, it was a nearly two-minute victory for home favourite Marianne Vos (Rabobank). Helen Wyman was second, and Dutchwoman Anna Van der Breggen was third.
Internationale Centrumcross van Surhuisterveen Men’s Race:
1. Rob Peeters (Telenet-Fidea)
2. Thijs van Amerongen (AA Drink Cycling Team)
3. Philip Walsleben (BKCP-Powerplus)
4. Lars van der Haar (Rabobank Offroad Team)
5. Gerben de Knegt (Orange-Babies)
6. Christoph Pfingsten (Cycling Team de Rijke)
7. Twan van den Brand (Orange-Babies)
8. Patrick van Leeuwen (Orange-Babies)
9. Niels Wubben (Rabobank Offroad Team)
10. Gert-Jan Bosman (Rabobank Offroad Team)
1. Marianne Vos — 38:00
2. Helen Wyman — 39:53
3. Anna Van der Breggen — 41:32
4. Yara Kastelijn — 41:55
5. Reza Hormes — 42:36
6. Evy Kuijpers — 43:19
7. Margriet Helena Kloppenburg — 43:23
8. Bianca Van den Hoek — 43:47
9. Laura Verdonschot — 43:50
10. Lucinda Brand — 44:04
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