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"I had to go very deep in the last lap. To be honest I did not feel the same as I did the previous weeks. I struggled to follow and did not feel fresh. It was not supposed to be so close but I just could not be better."

Photo: Feltet.dk

KEVIN PAUWELS

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LARS VAN DER HAAR

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WOUT VAN AERT

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12.10.2015 @ 15:26 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Wout van Aert (Vastgoedservice) remains the  man of the season  in cyclo-cross. In Ronse, van Aert also won the first round of the bpost Bank Trofee series. In an exciting race he was stronger than Pauwels, Van der Haar and Nys. "I did not have the same fresh feeling as in the past few weeks," he admitted.

 

The pack stayed together for one lap around the Hotond arena. Lars van der Haar was the first to show his cards and got an advantage. The lone  Dutchman was joined by Kevin Pauwels and Wout Van Aert.

 

A tiny moment of hesitation among the leaders was enough for Sven Nys to make it a quartet of leaders. Last year Nys made a one-man show in Ronse, but now realized that his rivals were also in the game.

 

Van Aert, Nys, Pauwels and Van der Haar bombarded each other with small attacks and had a tactical battle. But despite all efforts, the winner was not known as they started the final lap together.

 

With an agile acceleration Van Aert strung the group out and he would keep the pace up. Pauwels managed to stay with him for a while, but Van Aert was simply unbeatable, finally distancing his compatriot. That makes it five from five but this time van Aert clearly had to dig really deep. Van der Haar took third while Nys had to settle for fourth

 

Reactions:

 

"I had to go very deep in the last lap," Van Aert told Sporza. "To be honest I did not feel the same as I did the previous weeks. I struggled to follow and did not feel fresh. It was not supposed to be so close but I just could not be better.

 

"In the last lap I did it smart by sitting in front. It was a relief to take the victory. It's fantastic that I now lead the three classifications. Hopefully this will just keep going."

 

 

"I felt that I had the legs to win today," Nys told Sporza. "We were all four very evenly matched. In the last lap I think I made a tactical error. I thought I was perfect in the wheel of Van der Haar, but he left a gap.

 

"It may be my own fault. I'm in good condition, but I'm not a killer. The man with the strongest punch won."

 

“I felt good today and I was directly in the front of the race from the start, but my attempts were neutralized as the others returned," van der Haar said.

 

“In the final lap I expected van Aert and he came. In first instance I countered his attack but I didn’t have an answer on his second attack, which shortly followed. He was gone, which was really frustrating.

 

“In the sprint I beat Nys, which was good for a nice podium finish. Again satisfaction and a little bit disappointment, but I return to home with a lot of confidence. Now my focus is already on Valkenburg, as my shape is good and I gain race rhythm, so we will see next week.”

 

Result

1. Wout van Aert 59.06

2. Kevin Pauwels +0.04

3. Lars van der Haar +0.08

4. Sven Nys +0.11

5. Jens Adams +0.53

6. Tim Merlier +0.56

7. Gianni Vermeersch +0.57

8. Thijs van Amerongen

9. Michael Boros +1.00

10. Tom Meeusen +1.05

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