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February 23, Elite Men:

Albert solos to victory in Oostmalle

Brecht Decaluwé
February 23, 2014, 14:46 GMT,
February 23, 2014, 16:40 GMT

Nys salvages overall series win

After a few rough weeks Niels Albert (BKCP-Powerplus) managed to end his season in a positive way by winning the final 'cross of the season in sunny Oostmalle, Belgium.

Albert won the final round of the Bpost Bank Trophy (BPo) cyclo-cross series after a long solo effort with a small gap on Tom Meeusen (Telenet-Fidea). Sven Nys (Crelan-AA Drink) finished far off the pace in Oostmalle but his tenth place at 1:30 was more than good enough to secure the overall win in the bpost Bank series.

"This is a race where I always tend to perform well. I'm not in the best form of my life but this course has no secrets for me. I can always do more over here than in another race," Albert said at the post-race press chat. "After losing the Superprestige series last weekend I received a mental blow. I then decided to look at this race as if it was the first race of the new 2014-15 season. I wanted to start the season in a positive way. The win today offers some peace of mind to head into the off-season."

Albert has a strong record on the fast course in the forest next to the military runway; it's Albert's sixth win in Oostmalle. This time around Albert allowed Corné van Kessel (Telenet-Fidea) to lead the opening lap, but then he stormed forward. Only Meeusen and Nys managed to hop on the Albert-train.

At the intermediate sprint halfway into the second lap, Nys briefly took over the command and grabbed the fifteen bonus seconds. Albert quickly took back control and set a blistering pace when cornering through the seemingly endless sandy twists and turns.

Early on in the third lap Nys sat up and literally waved goodbye to Albert, giving way for Meeusen. The latter struggled hard to get back on Albert's wheel. By the end of that third lap Albert looked back over his shoulder and spotted an overheated Meeusen at short distance.

When hitting the fourth lap Albert wasted no time getting rid of Meeusen once again. From there, both Albert and Meeusen were time-trialing against each other. The gap grew by two seconds every lap until it was 16 seconds when hitting the final lap.

"I managed to close the gap and clocked the fastest lap of the race but the paid for that in the following lap," Meeusen said. "If I came back I would have won in the sprint."

In the meanwhile, Kevin Pauwels (Sunweb-Napoleon Games) rode away from the chase group in the third lap and remained in third position until the finish line.

Lars van der Haar (Rabobank Development Team) tried to put Pauwels under pressure but the young Dutchman never managed to close the gap.

"It wasn't easy," Pauwels said. "I rode to hold off Lars rather than trying to get back to Tom."

Eddy van IJzendoorn (NATU Balans) managed his best result of the season by claiming fifth place in the sprint against Dieter Vanthourenhout (Sunweb-Napoleon Games) and Philipp Walsleben (BKCP-Powerplus). Belgian champion Sven Nys didn't bother with that sprint. He cruised to the finish line a little later while celebrating his ninth overall win in the bpost Bank series. He kept an advantage of 2:25 on Albert and a massive 7:10 on Meeusen.

Full Results

# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Niels Albert (Bel) BKCP - Powerplus Cycling Team 1:04:17  
2 Tom Meeusen (Bel) Telenet Fidea Cycling Team 0:00:07  
3 Kevin Pauwels (Bel) Sunweb - Napoleon Games Cycling Team 0:00:39  
4 Lars Van Der Haar (Ned) Rabo - Giant Offroad Team. 0:00:55  
5 Eddy Van IJzendoorn (Ned) Orange Babies Cycling Team 0:00:59  
6 Dieter Vanthourenhout (Bel) Sunweb - Napoleon Games Cycling Team    
7 Philipp Walsleben (Ger) BKCP - Powerplus Cycling Team 0:01:01  
8 Bart Aernouts (Bel) AA Drink/ Pro 0:01:09  
9 Rob Peeters (Bel) Vastgoedservice - Golden Palace Cycling Team 0:01:15  
10 Sven Nys (Bel) Crelan - AA Drink Team 0:01:30  
11 Radomir Simunek (Cze) Kwadro-Stannah Cycling Team 0:01:45  
12 Joeri Adams (Bel) Vastgoedservice - Golden Palace Cycling Team 0:02:11  
13 Martin Bina (Cze) Kwadro-Stannah Cycling Team 0:02:30  
14 Vincent Baestaens (Bel) BKCP - Powerplus Cycling Team 0:02:33  
15 Thijs Van Amerongen (Ned) AA Drink/ Pro    
16 Jim Aernouts (Bel) Sunweb - Napoleon Games Cycling Team 0:02:35  
17 Klaas Vantornout (Bel) Sunweb - Napoleon Games Cycling Team 0:03:03  
18 Sven Vanthourenhout (Bel) Crelan - AA Drink Team 0:03:14  
19 Thijs Al (Ned) Telenet Fidea Cycling Team    
20 Kenneth Van Compernolle (Bel) DNCS/PRO 2012 Cycling Team 0:03:17  
21 Niels Wubben (Ned) 0:03:19  
22 Twan Van Den Brand (Ned)    
23 Corne Van Kessel (Ned) 0:04:16  
24 Marcel Meisen (Ger) 0:04:21  
25 Stijn Huys (Bel) 0:04:49  
26 Patrick Van Leeuwen (Ned) 0:04:54  
27 Mariusz Gil (Pol) 0:04:59  
28 Bart Verschueren (Bel) 0:05:32  
29 Ingmar Uytdewilligen (Bel) 0:05:48  
30 Kevin Cant (Bel) 0:06:08  
31 Niels Koyen (Bel)    
32 Jens Gys (Bel)    
33 Davy Commeyne (Bel)    
34 Wouter Goosen (Bel)    
35 Kristof Cop (Bel)    
36 Edwin De Wit (Bel)    
37 Hans Van Den Bogaert (Bel)    
38 Edwin De Wit    
39 Lubomir Petrus (Cze)    
40 Hans Van den Bogaert    
DNF Wietse Bosmans    
DNF Julien Taramarcaz (Swi)    
DNF Jonathan Page (USA)    
DNF Dave De Cleyn    
Intermediate sprint
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Sven Nys 15  pts
2 Niels Albert 10  
3 Tom Meeusen 5  
Fastest lap
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Tom Meeusen 0:06:14  
2 Niels Albert 0:06:15  
3 Kevin Pauwels 0:06:18  
Final classification
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Sven Nys 8:10:51  
2 Niels Albert 0:02:25  
3 Tom Meeusen 0:07:10  
4 Rob Peeters 0:09:26  
5 Thijs van Amerongen (Ned) 0:10:05  
6 Bart Aernouts 0:10:43  
7 Philipp Walsleben (Ger) 0:11:12  
8 Kevin Pauwels 0:13:37  
9 Klaas Vantornout 0:15:35  
10 Jim Aernouts 0:18:54  
11 Corné van Kessel (Ned) 0:19:11  
12 Martin Bina (Cze) 0:20:15  
13 Twan van den Brand (Ned) 0:20:40  
14 Julien Taramarcaz (Swi) 0:21:47  
15 Joeri Adams 0:24:32  
16 Dieter Vanthourenhout 0:24:39  
17 Eddy van IJzendoorn (Ned) 0:24:40  
18 Wietse Bosmans 0:26:16  
19 Sven Vanthourenhout 0:26:25  
20 Lars van der Haar (Ned) 0:26:52  
21 Radomir Simunek (Cze) 0:27:00  
22 Zdenek Stybar (Cze) 0:27:30  
23 Marcel Meisen (Ger) 0:27:48  
24 Bart Wellens 0:29:41  
25 Thijs Al (Ned) 0:29:57  
26 Lubomir Petrus (Cze) 0:31:15  
27 Mariusz Gil (Pol)    
28 Patrick Gaudy 0:33:50  
29 Ian Field (GBr) 0:34:11  
30 Niels Wubben 0:34:52  
Sprint classification
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Sven Nys 8  pts
2 Thijs van Amerongen    
3 Niels Albert 7  pts
4 Rob Peeters    
5 Lars van der Haar 4  pts
6 Ian Field    
7 Klaas Vantornout    
8 Martin Bina    
9 Philipp Walsleben    
10 Tom Meeusen 3  pts
11 Radomir Simunek 2  
12 Joeri Adams 1