Daphny van den Brand (AA Drink/Leontien.nl) dominated the Superprestige race in Zogge, Belgium. Fresh from grabbing her fourth European title last week the Dutch 33-year-old easily stayed out of sight of her rivals on a foggy Sunday morning. Nearly twenty seconds later French youngster Pauline Ferrand-Prevot (AC Bazancourt) won the tight sprint for second place from Belgian champion Sanne Cant (BKCP-Powerplus), Sabrina Stultiens (Brainwash) and Sophie de Boer (Telenet-Fidea).
"These are true cross courses, they twist around and go up and down. That's what I love," Van den Brand said.
Six women distanced the rest of the field during the first laps: Van den Brand, Ferrand-Prevot, Cant, Stultiens, De Boer and Nikki Harris (Telenet-Fidea).
Ferrand-Prevot tested her legs in the first half of the race but to no avail. "I tried to shake off some women but it didn't work out. I wasn't able to hold on to the handlebars too well. On Friday I crashed and my finger still hurts," the 19 year-old said.
Van den Brand didn't know what to think of the French woman's attack. "She's very young and I don't know how she rides. I checked her out and she's got good technical skills but she doesn't have the power yet to keep up the pace for a whole lap," Van den Brand said.
European champ Van den Brand wanted to put on a good race spectacle for the organizers and spectators and timed her decisive acceleration well. "During the second lap I tested my legs on this real cross course and soon realized I had a good chance for the win.
"I didn't want to ruin the race and decided not to take the race in hand. I planned to attack during the penultimate lap but eventually got away in the last lap. I sneaked past Sophie de Boer just ahead of a technical section and powered forward. Sophie isn't really known to be a good bike handler and she must have blocked the rest a bit in that section. In the end it was an easy win for me," Van den Brand said.
Behind her a flat tyre ruined Harris's chances to get a good result while the rest headed for a sprint. It turned out to be an extremely tight one in which Ferrand-Prevot came out as best of the rest.
Further back Amy Dombroski (Crankbrothers Race Club) picked up another top 10 result by finishing ninth at 1:20 from winner Van den Brand.
Van den Brand's top form comes while she's in her last season as rider. "It really is my last season. Then it's time for other things. I'm very pleased with my Euro title and hopefully I can repeat this feat at the world championships," Van den Brand said.
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Daphny Van Den Brand (Ned) AA Drink-Leontien.nl||0:40:35|
|2||Pauline Ferrand Prevot (Fra)||0:00:18|
|3||Sanne Cant (Bel) BOXX Veldritacademie|
|4||Sabrina Stultiens (Ned)|
|5||Sophie De Boer (Ned) VZW Young Telenet Fidea Cycling Team|
|6||Nikki Harris (GBr) VZW Young Telenet Fidea Cycling Team||0:00:43|
|7||Ellen Van Loy (Bel) Kriekel Cycling Team Tessenderlo||0:01:16|
|8||Joyce Vanderbeken (Bel) Cycling Team Vermeeren|
|9||Amy Dombroski (USA) Crankbrothers Race Club||0:01:20|
|10||Tessa Van Nieuwpoort (Ned)||0:01:35|
|11||Nikoline Hansen (Den)||0:02:00|
|12||Hilde Quintens (Bel) Van Goethem - Prorace - cycling team|
|13||Annefleur Kalvenhaar (Ned) Giant Dealerteams|
|14||Nicole De Bie-Leyten (Bel) Telenet-Fidea Cycling Team||0:02:12|
|15||Christine Vardaros (USA) Baboco - Revor Cycling Team||0:03:04|
|16||Kim Van de Steene (Bel)||0:04:02|
|17||Ilona Meter (Ned)||0:04:07|
|18||Shana Maes (Bel)||0:04:14|
|19||Margriet Kloppenburg (Den)||0:04:18|
|20||Susanne Juranek (Ger)||0:04:41|
|21||Liv Susanne Bachmann (Ger)||0:05:19|
|22||Caren Commissaris (Bel)||0:06:16|
|23||Anja Buysse (Bel)||0:06:47|
|24||Vicki Thomas (Can) Ottawa.cx||0:07:06|
|25 (-1 lap)||Katrien Thijs (Bel) K. Edegem Bicycle Club - BMX R|
|26 (-2 laps)||Anja Geldhof (Bel)|
|27||Marijke De Pauw (Bel) WK Noord West Brabant|
|28 (-3 laps)||Caitlyn La Haye (Bel)|
|29||Maaike Lanssens (Bel)|
|30||Sandie Verriest (Bel)|