Katerina Nash (Luna Pro Racing) won a tough edition of the Azencross, sixth round of the Bpost Bank Trophy cyclo-cross series in Loenhout on Tuesday afternoon. The Czech Champion and US-resident held off World Champion Marianne Vos (Rabo Liv Women Cycling Team) in a true mudder. Ellen Van Loy (Young Telenet-Fidea) finished third at 50 seconds from Nash and moves back to 1:01 minutes from series leader Sophie de Boer (Kalas-NNOF) in the general classification.
De Boer finished ninth at 2:32 from winner Nash in Loenhout. Road World Champion Pauline Ferrand-Prévot (Rabo Liv Women Cycling Team) abandoned the race in the second of four laps, while riding in sixth place.
Temperatures just above freezing point turned the snow-covered course into a muddy, wet challenge with ice water as cherry on the cake. Nash rode a nearly perfect race in tough circumstances, profiting from the excellent form that also delivered the 37-year-old victories at the Czech Championships and the World Cup round in Namur.
She quickly moved ahead of fast starters Helen Wyman (Kona Factory Team) and De Boer, moving away from the rest of the pack together with Van Loy and Vos. Behind her UCI-classification leader Sanne Cant had a rough day, crashing twice but somehow fighting herself towards fifth place at 1:50 from Nash.
The three leaders briefly rode together as Nash powered away, excelling in the deep mud. Van Loy and Vos managed to keep Nash in sight. A small mistake from Nash brought Vos back within touching distance. Nash clearly found her second breath and steamed away from Vos and Van Loy, creating a gap of 15 seconds.
This time Nash held on to her lead and grabbed the win. Vos finished as runner-up at 23 seconds from Nash. Van Loy managed yet another podium result. Harris was fourth ahead of Cant, who lost 1:50 on Nash. Wyman had a good second half of the race, finishing ahead of Verschueren, Sels and De Boer. The series leader lost 1:42 on Van Loy in Loenhout but still has another minute to spare.
US rider Elle Anderson (Kalas-NNOF) finished in 10th place.
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Katerina Nash (Cze) Luna Pro Team||0:43:17|
|2||Marianne Vos (Ned) Rabobank Women Team||0:00:23|
|3||Ellen Van Loy (Bel) VZW Young Telenet Fidea Cycling Team||0:00:50|
|4||Nikki Harris (GBr) VZW Young Telenet Fidea Cycling Team||0:01:13|
|5||Sanne Cant (Bel) Enertherm - BKCP||0:01:50|
|6||Helen Wyman (GBr) Konfa FFSA Factory Team||0:02:12|
|7||Jolien Verschueren (Bel) Wielerteam Decock-Woningbouw Vandekerckhove||0:02:18|
|8||Loes Sels (Bel) VZW Young Telenet Fidea Cycling Team||0:02:32|
|9||Sophie De Boer (Ned) Kalas-NNOF Cycling Team|
|10||Elle Anderson (USA) Kalas-NNOF Cycling Team||0:02:49|
|11||Pavla Havlikova (Cze) VZW Young Telenet Fidea Cycling Team||0:02:59|
|12||Anna Van Der Breggen (Ned)||0:03:32|
|13||Lucie Chainel-Lefevre (Fra)||0:04:16|
|14||Crystal Anthony (USA)||0:04:26|
|15||Githa Michiels (Bel)||0:04:30|
|16||Katrien Thijs (Bel) Kleur Op Maat cyclingteam||0:04:46|
|17||Laure Bouteloup (Fra)||0:05:23|
|18||Lucinda Brand (Ned)||0:05:51|
|19||Gabriella Durrin (GBr)||0:05:58|
|20||Asa Maria Erlandsson (Nor)||0:06:10|
|21||Laura Verdonschot (Bel) AA Drink-B.R.I.S. Cycling Team||0:06:25|
|22||Esmee Oosterman (Ned) AA Drink-B.R.I.S. Cycling Team||0:06:31|
|23||Erica Zaveta (USA)||0:07:11|
|24||Lizzy Witlox (Ned) Kleur Op Maat cyclingteam||0:07:26|
|25||Shana Maes (Bel) AA Drink-B.R.I.S. Cycling Team||0:07:33|
|26||Diane Lee (GBr)||0:07:36|
|27||Sarah Lomas (GBr)||0:08:17|
|28||Stephanie De Croock (Bel) Wielerclub De Sprinters Malderen||0:08:24|
|29||Lindy Van Anrooij (Ned)||0:08:30|
|30||Corey Coogan Cisek (USA)||0:08:59|
|31||Kim Van De Steene (Bel) Afdeling Oost-Vlaanderen WBV - VZW||0:09:05|
|32||Francine Meehan (Fra)||0:09:07|
|33||Gertie Willems ((Bel) Kleur Op Maat cyclingteam|
|34||Mirjam Gysling (Swi)|
|35||Ksenia Lepikhina (USA)|
|36||Joyce Heyns (Bel) De Kastelse Durvers V.Z.W.|
|37||Anja Geldhof (Bel)|
|38||Maaike De Heij (Ned) WV De Valleirenners|
|39||Tine Verdeyen (Bel) Cycling Team Zemst VZW|
|40||Jessika Timmermans (Bel) Hageland Cycling Team|
|41||Marijke De Pauw (Bel) WK Noord West Brabant|
|42||Chris Van Dorsselaere (Bel) Rudyco-Janatrans Cycling Team|
|43||Iris Van Der Pol (Ned)|