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Already in the second lap, Nys dropped his rivals and increased his advantage all the way to the end to take a dominant sixth win in the traditional Jaarmarktcross in Niel; van Aert and Pauwels completed the podium

Photo: Feltet.dk

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11.11.2014 @ 16:12 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

After several near-misses, Sven Nys finally returned to his winning ways when he took a hugely dominant win in the Jaarmarktcross in Niel. The Belgian champion accelerated already in the first lap and after dropping Corne van Kessel in the second lap, he constantly increased his advantage to win the race by more than a minute over Wout van Aert and Kevin Pauwels who completed the podium.

 

Going into today’s Jaarmarktcross in Niel, Sven Nys had not won a race since October 12. Several near-misses have made it a frustrating season for the Belgian champion, most notably last weekend’s two second places in the Koppenbergcross and the Superprestige race in Zonhoven.

 

After a fourth place in Sunday’s race in Ruddervoorde, Nys finally broke his drought when he took a dominant sixth win in the Jaarmarktcross in Niel. The Belgian champion was in a class of his own on the hard, hilly, muddy course and left no one in doubt about his superiority.

 

Already in the opening lap, Nys and Corne van Kessel dropped their rivals and at the start of the second lap, Nys left his companion behind. From there, it was a demonstration of force, with Nys constantly increasing his advantage until he slowed down in the final lap to celebrate his win.

 

Behind the superior Belgian, Kevin Pauwels and Wout van Aert were involved in a close battle for second, with the latter constantly trying to put his rival under pressure. On two occasions, he managed to drop Pauwels but the Sunweb captain was back in contention at the start of the final lap. However, van Aert still had enough left in the tank for a final attack and he finally got clear to finish the race in second ahead of Pauwels.

 

The race is not part of the major series but is a prestigious event due to its long history. The best riders will be back in action on Sunday when they tackle the next round of the Superprestige series in Asper-Gavere.

 

How it unfolded:

Sven Nys showed his intentions right from the beginning, getting clear with Corne van Kessel already in the opening lap. Behind, Philipp Walsleben took off in pursuit but at the end of the first lap, he was already 15 seconds behind.

 

In the second lap, van Kessel almost brought Nys down and after apologizing for the incident, the Telenet-Fidea rider started to suffer. Nys dropped his companion while Walsleben was caught by Kevin Pauwels and Wout van Aert to form a strong chase trio that gradually approached van Kessel. The trio joined the Dutchman halfway through the second lap, with Pauwels putting his companions under severe pressure.

 

At the end of the second lap, Nys was 23 seconds ahead of his four chasers. Further back, a bigger group with several Sunweb riders, including Klaas Vantornout, had formed.

 

On the third lap, van Aert took over the pace-setting in the chase group. This spelled the end for a fading van Kessel and Walsleben, leaving van Aert and Pauwels as the nearest chasers of Nys. Furthermore, Walsleben dropped van Kessel who was suffering in the sandy sections.

 

At the end of the lap, Nys had extended his advantage over van Aert and Pauwels to 28 seconds while Walsleben was already 40 seconds behind. Van Kessel was drifting backwards and about to be caught by the next bigger group.

 

Nys continued at his own pace and was clearly in a class of his own. At the end of the next lap, he was 36 seconds ahead of his two chasers while Walsleben was now at 50 seconds.

 

With Nys constantly increasing his advantage, the battle was now for the second place. Van Aert was constantly trying to get rid of Pauwels but the Sunweb rider stayed glued to the youngster’s wheel, creating a very exciting battle for the minor podium positions.

 

At the end of the fifth lap, Nys was 40 seconds ahead of his two chasers who were not assured of their podium spots yet. Walsleben was still only 15 seconds behind the pair and the German champion had clearly not given up yet. The next big group had caught van Kessel and contained the likes of Tom Meeusen, Julien Taramarcaz, Rob Peeters, Michael Boros, Jim Aernouts, Dieter and Sven Vanthourenhout and Vantornout.

 

In the next lap, Pauwels finally showed signs of weakness and in the many muddy sections, he lost contact with van Aert. However, the veteran gauged his effort perfectly and when they again crossed the line, they were back together, now trailing Nys by 42 seconds. Walsleben was losing the battle and was 1.15 behind the invincible Belgian champion.

 

In the next lap, disaster struck for Pauwels when he slid out in a left-hand turn. Despite being unhurt and quickly back on his bike, he lost a few seconds and was now in chase mode behind van Aert who tried to increase his advantage. At the same time, van Kessel crashed out of the big chase group, drifting further back after his excellent start to the race.

 

At the start of the penultimate lap, Nys was 43 seconds ahead of van Aert while Pauwels was 6 seconds further adrift. Walsleben was now at 1.37 and was out of the battle for the podium spots.

 

Pauwels’ fortunes turned halfway through the lap when van Aert was the next rider to go down. This allowed the Sunweb rider to rejoin and even briefly pass the youngster before van Aert again took over the pace-setting.

 

Van Aert was unable to drop Pauwels and the pair were still together when they started the final lap. AT this point, they were 1.10 behind the outstanding Nys who completely dominated the race.

 

The excitement on the final lap was about the battle for second. For the first time in a long time, Pauwels tried to attack van Aert and briefly seemed to have his rival under pressure. However, everything changed when the youngster passed his rival and a fierce acceleration made the difference as Pauwels fell off the pace.

 

Nys was unconcerned by this battle and maintained his pace throughout the entire lap. As he entered the long finishing straight, he had plenty of time to celebrate his sixth win in the race while van Aert crossed the line to take second with a time loss of 51 seconds. Pauwles took third 9 seconds later before Walsleben crossed the line as the fourth rider more than 2 minutes adrift. Peeters and Dieter Vanthourenthout escped from the big chase group, with the latter winning the sprint for fifth.

 

Result:

1. Sven Nys

2. Wout van Aert

3. Kevin Pauwels

4. Philipp Walsleben

5. Dieter Vanthourenhout

6. Rob Peeters

7. Sven Vanthourenhout

8. Julien Taramarcaz

9. Tom Meeusen

10. Jim Aernouts

11. Klaas Vantornout

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