Joeri Adams (Rabo-Giant Offroad) stormed to victory in the Men’s U23 category at the Belgian national championships in Antwerp on Sunday afternoon. Adams won in sunny weather conditions ahead of Wietse Bosmans (BKCP-Powerplus) and Kevin Eeckhout. Defending champion Jim Aernouts finished off the podium in fourth place.
“Before the race I wasn't feeling well and I even had to throw up. It's been a meagre year, mostly due to bad luck but this makes up for a lot of that. Once Gianni Vermeersch wasn't able to keep up with me I knew it would be between me and Bosmans,” Adams said.
Favourite Bosmans took the initiative during the first half of the race but he wasn't able to shake off the other contenders. With three laps to go, Bosmans led the race together with Adams, while Eeckhout and Aernouts followed a bit further back. Then bad luck in the form of a flat tyre struck Adams. “I was pissed because I noticed it just after passing the pit area. I lost about 25 seconds but I didn't give up,” Adams said.
Wietse Bosmans flatted too but going into the last lap both Adams and Bosmans were part of the four-man leading group, together with Eeckhout and Aernouts. One of them would capture the Belgian tricolour jersey. Heading towards the sand pit Adams accelerated and the 21 year-old quickly gained half a minute on his rivals.
“In the sand I went flat out and it gave me a nice gap,” Adams said.
Adams eventually had time to enjoy his solo ride to the victory. When crossing the line he pointed to his rear tyre, indicating he managed to win despite his bad luck. It was the second national title for Adams, after capturing a first one in the Beginners category.
“I still rate my victory at the world championships of 2007 in Hooglede-Gits a bit higher, even though it was only in the Junior Men category,” Adams said. Adams turns professional at the Telenet-Fidea team from March 1.
Behind the winner the pace was set by Eeckhout and it proved to be too fast for Aernouts. In the sprint Bosmans easily captured second place ahead of Eeckhout. A few seconds later Aernouts rolled across the line in fourth place.
For Bosmans it was clear that Adams was a well-deserved winner. “Today he was simply stronger. The long stretches were in his advantage too, having a lot of experience on the road. When hitting the sand I was at my limit and I started making mistakes. The good thing for me is that I have two years left in this category so that should be enough to capture the title one of the next years,” Bosmans said.
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Joeri Adams (Rabo Giant Offroad Team)||0:47:53|
|2||Wietse Bosmans (BKCP–Powerplus)||0:00:12|
|3||Kevin Eeckhout (Sunweb-Revor)||0:00:15|
|4||Jim Aernouts (Sunweb-Revor)||0:00:32|
|5||Vinnie Braet (Sunweb-Revor)||0:01:00|
|6||Matthias Bossuyt (Sunweb-Revor)||0:01:04|
|7||Gianni Vermeersch (BKCP–Powerplus)|
|8||Stef Boden (Sunweb-Revor)||0:01:15|
|9||Sven Beelen (Sunweb-Revor)||0:01:17|
|10||Jens Adams (BKCP–Powerplus)|
|11||Angelo De Clercq (Sunweb-Revor)||0:02:16|
|12||Kristof Cop (APB - Cycling Team)||0:02:26|
|13||Jelle Brackman (Van Der Vurst Cycling Team)||0:02:32|
|14||Floris De Tier (Cyclingchamps)|
|15||Tim Merlier (Sunweb-Revor)||0:02:39|
|16||Xandro Meurisse (Cyclingchamps)||0:02:51|
|17||Dany Lacroix (Velo Club de l'Espoir Condruzien)||0:03:37|
|18||Ingmar Uytdewilligen (WAC Team Hoboken (kon.) v.z.w)||0:03:40|
|19||Ritchie Denolf (Cyclingchamps)||0:04:02|
|20||Raf Risbourg (KDL Cyclingteam)||0:04:09|
|21||Niels Koyen (APB - Cycling Team)||0:04:14|
|22||Jonathan Bervoets (APB - Cycling Team)||0:04:19|
|23||Joeri Hofman (KDL Cyclingteam)||0:04:53|
|24||Stijn Mortelmans (Afdeling Antwerpen – WBV)||0:05:00|
|25||Jelle Cant (Van Goethem/prorace ct)||0:05:13|
|26||Hendrik Sweeck (KDL Cyclingteam)||0:05:30|
|27||Ruben Veestraeten (APB - Cycling Team)||0:05:32|
|28||Valentijn Van De Velde (Cyclingchamps)||0:05:39|
|29||Jeffrey Mellemans (Heylen Meubelcentrale zlwc St.Truiden)||0:06:13|
|30||Zico Waeytens (Omega Pharma-Lotto-Davo)||0:06:19|
|31||Robin Poelvoorde (Cyclingchamps)||0:07:08|
|32||Zeb Veestraeten (Sport en Steun – Leopoldsburg)||0:07:16|
|33||Kevin Neirynck (Kon. VC ´t Meetjesland – Knesselare)||0:07:18|
|34||Sonny Volders (APB - Cycling Team)||0:07:32|
|35||Kenny Maes (De Toekomstvrienden Baal)|
|36||Matthias Boetens (Cycling Team Fietsen Vandeputte)|
|37||Vincent Van Hooste (Asfra Racing Team)|
|38||Sieën Veestraeten (Sport en Steun – Leopoldsburg)|
|39||Rutger Lahaye (Hageland Cycling Team)|
|40||Simon Geets (APB - Cycling Team)|
|41||Kenneth Goossens (Cycling Team Pajot vzw)|
|42||Laurent Moulin (Lotto-Predictor-VC Ardennes)|
|43||Stijn Heyse (Mirmil Cycling Team)|
|44||Niels Dirikx (Sport en Steun – Leopoldsburg)|
|45||Klaas Vankersschaever (Kon. VC ´t Meetjesland – Knesselare)|
|46||Jens Six (Asfra Racing Team)|
|47||Joachim Janssens (Cyclocrossteam Freddy Sport Dilbeek)|
|48||Robin Delanghe (Pro Cycling Team VZW – Neerpelt)|
|49||Jonas Plasschaert (Cycling Team Pajot VZW)|
|DNF||Jens Gys (Bianchi-Lotto-Nieuwe Hoop Tielen VZW)|
|DNF||Kris Vermeir (Cycling Team Pajot VZW)|
|DNS||Dennis Baeyens (Flemish Cycling Projects)|
|DNS||Robby Cobbaert (ASB Parein-Rogelli Cycling Team)|