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Nys goes after beer-throwing spectator in Loenhout

Cycling News
December 28, 2012, 22:23,
December 29, 2012, 08:22
First Edition Cycling News, Friday, December 28, 2012
Sven Nys had a miserable time in Loenhout

Sven Nys had a miserable time in Loenhout

  • Sven Nys had a miserable time in Loenhout
  • Sven Nys trails in the bpost Bank Trophy Loenhout
  • Sven Nys had a disastrous race in Loenhout

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Belgian champion abandons bpost Bank Trophy round

After suffering two crashes and a mechanical in a horrendously muddy course in Loenhout, Belgian champion Sven Nys was at the end of his rope. Trailing leader Niels Albert by more than a minute, he tried to limit his losses in the bpost Bank Trophy series, which is run on cumulative time, chasing hard through greasy, pitted mud bogs.

To top it off, on each lap, in the same stretch of the course, Nys was assaulted with a barrage of beer. In the final lap, coated in mud, Nys ran through that same section when, for the seventh time in a row, a beer cup hit him in the leg. Even though he could fight for his place in the overall classification, the Landbouwkrediet rider decided he'd rather exact his revenge than pedal on in pursuit of seconds.

"I could continue my pursuit, but I had had enough," Nys said to Sporza afterward. He plunged into the crowd, making a bee-line for the offender, who ran in the opposite direction rather than face the wrath of the 'cannibal' of cyclo-cross.

"I had planned it in advance," Nys continued. "If he throws it in the seventh lap, I'm not going to go quietly."

Making contact with the youthful fan, Nys was quick to confront him about his behavior, choosing words over fists to settle the score.

"I asked him, 'Why? Does this make sense?' He apologized. But nothing more than 'sorry' came. He was obviously pretty drunk. I did not get aggressive. Throwing beer is low-down and does not belong in cross. We are not animals. After the seventh time I was tired. Everyone deserves a little respect."

By not finishing the race, Nys tumbled five minutes down the classification, and is now over six minutes behind series leader and Loenhout winner Niels Albert.

"I did not finish and I can forget about the classification," Nys said. "I could have continued my fight for second place in the rankings. But I had had enough. That gentleman may place that in his list of achievements."

ellenbrook2001 More than 1 year ago
so sad same behaviour in the tour the France many drunk run after the rider or suffering in they bike they have no respect at all, alcohol should be ban at the tour De France until maybe one day a rider will be injured or a dramatic event will happen i can see every year some lunatic drunk doing bad gesture or almost stop the riders so discussing those idiot have no place in the french tour .or any bike race
Jens Verner Tranbjerg More than 1 year ago
No offence but your idea is ridiculous. How would you ban alcohol from the Tour? The Tour is held on public roads where alcohol is allowed to be consumed. And if should a ban was made it would take 100's to 1000's gendarmes to enforced it.
runninboy More than 1 year ago
Well if you make it illegal you do not have to arrest everyone. It just gives you the opportunity to charge idiots. On the climbs there are plenty of police who grab the worst offenders already. But at least with a ban they could charge them a little money instead of letting them go to repeat their behavior,
Jens Verner Tranbjerg More than 1 year ago
but that would mean you would make it illegal to drink everywhere in public. That is extremely unlikely to happen just because some bike race once a year comes around. And what about the rest of the 180 km? You can't just enforce it on climbs and the route goes around many peoples homes so would they not be allowed to drink? The idea is completely unrealistic and unnecessary. It's shooting pigeons with a cannon.
Brian Smallwood More than 1 year ago
That was Awesome! The crowd took it out on the guy too.
Andrew Smith More than 1 year ago
How could the organizers, security, or fans NOT get this figured out before the 7th time? The only person worth commending is Nys. I doubt I would have been as classy.
runninboy More than 1 year ago
I agree if someone was doing something like that beside me i would confront them. I remember being at a large race in the US and a couple of drunks were causing trouble. People got between them and the race and without violence got them to stop the behaviour. The longer you allow it to continue the more the bad behaviour escalates.
Giuseppe Magnetico More than 1 year ago
Meh, uptight euros. No wonder CX is so much bigger in the US than ever before, beer spray is the ultimate compliment. You get paid to race toys in the dirt, lighten up!!
Jens Verner Tranbjerg More than 1 year ago
Uptight? No just standing up against an abusing idiot. I would do the same. And look how peacefully we "Euros" can handle it instead of countries with some crazy gun people.
runninboy More than 1 year ago
lighten up? Yeah i can see you never raced for anything significant. When you are at your limit and racing for your living the adreneline real gets flowing. Then some idiot is making it worse? Just let the guy do his job. How about i show up at your shop and scream and spit beer on you while you try to do your job? I imagine on a bad day when things were not going too well you might then understand.
HailPantani More than 1 year ago
Giuseppi Magnetico - don't talk rubbish. And it wasn't just beer spray - on the 7th lap, a bottle hit Nys' back wheel. Loutish and dangerous behaviour - maybe acceptable in the states but NOT over here.
Aaron Wyatt More than 1 year ago
from what i saw it looked like a plastic dixie cup hitting his front wheel
Christian G More than 1 year ago
What a waste of beer.