Saturday 28 January 2012

Hoogerheide CX World Cup

It was an absolutely beautiful day for a race in Hoogerheide today: the sun was shining, the air was clear and the rain stayed away. There'd been plenty of rain in the last few days so boggy patches were guaranteed, but - thanks largely to the race organisers' decision not to permit training on the parcours until yesterday - there was nothing like the mudfest that had been predicted.

Marianne Vos took a 15th consecutive victory
The predicted Vosfest went ahead as expected, meanwhile. The 24-year-old Dutch megastar looked poised and purposeful on the start line, a complete contrast to the relaxed British rider Helen Wyman who was swapping jokes with the rider next to her, before leaping away and leading for the remained of the race. She was, literally, untouchable as she rode towards her fifteenth consecutive victory, making the fast parcours look easy as she built up to a 30 second lead and then kept going; gliding where others ground and seeming to get faster and faster towards the end. She crossed the line 1'28" ahead of Daphny van den Brand, though with 326 points to Vos' 290 it's Daphny who takes the World Cup - a fantastic end to her career as this is due to be her final cyclo cross season.

Wyman took 6th place, an excellent result and more evidence that she's fully recovered from the virus she contracted before Christmas - welcome news for British fans as she's by far our strongest rider at present (and for some years, for that matter). Derbyshire-born Nikki Harris was 12" behind her in eighth place.

Daphy van den Brand wins the World Cup
A large crash seconds after the race got under away left many women on the ground. Most were up and on their way quickly, but Sophie de Boer and Caroline Mani were not so fortunate and needed medical attention, both lying on the roadside surrounded by paramedics for some time before being taken away by ambulance. De Boer was feared to have broken her collar bone and shoulder, thus ruling her out for the upcoming World Championships, but later said on her Twitter feed that she hopes to be racing next week, also thanking fans for wishing her well:

"ssophiedeboer sophie de boer
Hopelijk duimt iedereen mee dat het meevalt en dat ik volgende week kan fietsen....... :'( bedankt voor de steun lieve mensen!!!" ("Hopefully [I'm not] that bad, everyone, and will be riding next week ....... : '( Thanks for the support nice people!")

There are still concerns that her wrist may be fractured and she has extensive grazing, but it seems she got off far more lightly than at first appeared to be the case. Details of Mani's injuries are not yet known - paramedics appeared to be concerned about her knee, but the rider later posted a photograph on her Twitter account showing herself with her left arm in plaster and cuts to her face. Katie Compton and Katerina Nash came close to crashing after a collision which left their bikes entangled, but managed to stay upright and were racing again within seconds.

Fancy a report from the viewpoint of somebody who was actually in the race? Helen Wyman is the person to see. 
Full results below

2, 1, 3 - Van den Brand, Vos, Compton

Elite Women
  1 Marianne Vos (Rabobank) 00:39:14 
  2 Daphny Van Den Brand (WV Schijndel) 01:28 
  3 Katerina Nash 01:35
  4 Katherine Compton (Rabobank-Giant Offroad Team) 01:53
  5 Lucie Chainel-lefevre 02:06
  6 Helen Wyman 02:24
  7 Nikki Harris 02:36
  8 Annie Last 02:49
  9 Sanne Cant (Boxx VeldritAcademie)  03:16
  10. Pavla Havlikova 03:24
  11 Meredith Miller 03:25
  12 Jasmin Achermann  03:33
  13 Sabrina Schweizer 03:47
  14 Joyce Vanderbeken 03:53
  15 Julie Krasniak 03:56
  16 Reza Hormes Ravenstijn 04:03
  17 Sabrina Stultiens (Brainwash) 04:09
  18 Nicole Duke 04:35
  19 Linda Van Rijen (Skil - 1t4i) 04:40
  20 Christine Majerus (Team GSD Gestion) 04:42
  21 Arenda Grimberg 04:52
  22. Kaitlin Antonneau (Exergy Twenty12) 05:10
  23 Gesa Bruchmann 05:26
  24 Valentina Scandolara (S.C. Michela Fanini Rox) 05:32
  25 Nancy Bober 05:55
  26 Lana Verberne 05:58
  27 Olga Wasiuk ST
  28 Nikoline Hansen 06:20
  29 Andrea Smith 06:30
  30 Kajsa Snihs 06:34
  31 Alice Maria Arzuffi  06:38
  32 Hilde Quintens 06:40
  33 Sabrina Maurer 06:56
  34 Christine Vardaros (Baboco - Revor Cycling Team) 07:12
  35 Sakiko Miyauchi 07:21
  36 Asa Maria Erlandsson 07:31
  37 Kim Van De Steene 07:35
  38 Githa Michiels 07:39
  39 Annefleur Kalvenhaar  07:40
  40 Ayako Toyooka 07:44
  41 Amy Dombroski (Cranckbrothers) 08:09
  42 Katrien Thijs 00:01
  43 Lise-Marie Henzelin ST
  44 Margriet Kloppenburg ST
  45 Madara Furmane 00:02

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