Just like last year, US champion Katie Compton (Planet Bike) prevailed in the first round of the UCI Cyclo-cross World Cup, this time in Aigle, Switzerland on the grounds of the UCI's headquarters.
After opening her season with five straight wins on US soil, Compton continued her unbeaten streak with a solo victory in Switzerland on a fast, winding course where she could take full advantage of her power.
Half a minute later Dutch champion Daphny van den Brand (ZZPR) finished second ahead of US-based Czech star Katerina Nash (Luna Pro Team), who won the sprint for the remaining podium spot from Sanne Van Paassen (Brainwash).
An on-form Sanne Van Paassen kicked off the race with a fast start in Aigle. The 21-year-old Dutch rider has won every race she entered thus far this season and she took the initial lead ahead of Daphny van den Brand, Belgian Sanne Cant (BKCP-Powerplus), Pavla Havlikova (Czech Republic) and Hanka Kupfernagel (Germany).
Katie Compton didn't have the best start and needed time on the opening lap to move up on the fast but technical course. Van den Brand started pulling in front and behind her Van Paassen went over the handlebars. The result was that three women formed a leading group: Van den Brand, Cant and Kupfernagel.
For Cant and Kupfernagel the speed was too high and a few moments later Van den Brand took a solo lead. In the meantime, Compton was moving up quickly as she got past Van Paassen and joined forces with Cant.
At the conclusion of the opening lap Van den brand led the race with a gap of six seconds over Kupfernagel. Cant and Compton followed moments later in front of Van Paassen and Nash.
During the second lap Compton bridged up to the leader Van den Brand, leaving Kupfernagel and Cant behind. The latter dropped further back and a few moments later she was also passed and dropped by Van Paassen and Nash.
On the third lap Compton surged once more and soon found herself 20 seconds up on Van den Brand and Van Paassen. Kupfernagel and Nash followed next, closing in on the two Dutch riders.
It was clear Compton was in a class of her own as she added 10 more seconds to her lead during the fourth lap. Van den Brand was best of the rest and dropped the other chasers. Nash caught up with Van Paassen while Kupfernagel had a rough lap and got dropped.
During the penultimate lap Compton maintained her half-minute lead over Van den Brand while Nash and Van Paassen continued to battle for the final podium spot.
Compton lost no ground to her pursuers on the final lap and took a solo victory, 30 seconds ahead of runner-up Van den Brand. Eight seconds later Nash won the sprint for third place from Van Paassen.
The demanding course took its toll as riders crossed the line one-by-one. Kupfernagel finished fifth, more than a minute behind Compton. British champion Helen Wyman (Kona) ended her day in sixth place, followed by Christel Ferrier-Bruneau (France) in seventh.
Belgian's Sanne Cant won the sprint eighth place from France's Caroline Mani (Vienne Futuroscope). Sophie de Boer (The Netherlands) rounded out the top-10 at more than two minutes off the pace of Compton.
|1||Katherine Compton (USA) Planet Bike-Stevens Bikes||0:40:07|
|2||Daphny van den Brand (Ned) ZZPR.nl-Destil||0:00:30|
|3||Katerina Nash (Cze) Luna Pro Team||0:00:38|
|4||Sanne van Paassen (Ned) BrainWash||0:00:39|
|5||Hanka Kupfernagel (Ger)||0:01:09|
|6||Helen Wyman (GBr) Kona||0:01:24|
|7||Christel Ferrier-Bruneau (Fra) Vienne Futuroscope||0:01:30|
|8||Sanne Cant (Bel) BKCP-Powerplus||0:01:48|
|9||Caroline Mani (Fra) Vienne Futuroscope||0:01:49|
|10||Sophie De Boer (Ned)||0:02:07|
|11||Arenda Grimberg (Ned)||0:02:29|
|12||Pavla Havlikova (Cze)||0:02:32|
|13||Sabrina Schweizer (Ger)|
|14||Martina Zwick (Ger)||0:02:41|
|15||Linda Van Rijen (Ned)||0:02:50|
|16||Jasmin Achermann (Swi) Fischer-BMC||0:02:52|
|17||Reza Hormes (Ned)||0:03:07|
|18||Joyce Vanderbeken (Bel)||0:03:08|
|19||Amy Dombroski (USA) Luna Pro Team||0:03:12|
|20||Susan Butler (USA) Hudz-Subaru||0:03:34|
|21||Gabriella Day (GBr)||0:03:41|
|22||Ellen Van Loy (Bel)||0:03:48|
|23||Sabrina Stultiens (Ned)||0:03:50|
|24||Nadia Triquet-Claude (Fra) Vienne Futuroscope|
|25||Nikki Harris (GBr)||0:04:04|
|26||Nancy Bober (Bel)||0:04:11|
|27||Jana Kyptova (Cze)||0:04:16|
|28||Nicole De Bie - Leyten (Bel)||0:04:18|
|29||Daniela Bresciani (Ita)||0:04:36|
|30||Francesca Cucciniello (Ita)||0:05:06|
|31||Tessa Van Nieuwpoort (Ned)||0:05:10|
|32||Stefania Vecchio (Ita)|
|33||Jennifer Sagesser (Swi) Thoemus Racing Team||0:06:37|
|34||Gertie Willems (Bel)||-1lap|
|35||Lise-Marie Henzelin (Swi)|
|36||Nicoletta Bresciani (Ita)|
|37||Nikoline Hansen (Den)|
|38||Stéphanie Vaxillaire-Denuit (Fra)|
|39||Lise Müller (Swi)||-2laps|
|40||Vicki Thomas (Can) Disasterrecovery.Com|
|1||Katherine Compton (USA) Planet Bike-Stevens Bikes||60||pts|
|2||Daphny van den Brand (Ned) ZZPR.nl-Destil||50|
|3||Katerina Nash (Cze) Luna Pro Team||45|
|4||Sanne van Paassen (Ned) BrainWash||40|
|5||Hanka Kupfernagel (Ger)||35|
|6||Helen Wyman (GBr) Kona||30|
|7||Christel Ferrier-Bruneau (Fra) Vienne Futuroscope||28|
|8||Sanne Cant (Bel) BKCP-Powerplus||26|
|9||Caroline Mani (Fra) Vienne Futuroscope||24|
|10||Sophie De Boer (Ned)||22|
|11||Arenda Grimberg (Ned)||20|
|12||Pavla Havlikova (Cze)||19|
|13||Sabrina Schweizer (Ger)||18|
|14||Martina Zwick (Ger)||17|
|15||Linda Van Rijen (Ned)||16|
|16||Jasmin Achermann (Swi) Fischer-BMC||15|
|17||Reza Hormes (Ned)||14|
|18||Joyce Vanderbeken (Bel)||13|
|19||Amy Dombroski (USA) Luna Pro Team||12|
|20||Susan Butler (USA) Hudz-Subaru||11|
|21||Gabriella Day (GBr)||10|
|22||Ellen Van Loy (Bel)||9|
|23||Sabrina Stultiens (Ned)||8|
|24||Nadia Triquet-Claude (Fra) Vienne Futuroscope||7|
|25||Nikki Harris (GBr)||6|
|26||Nancy Bober (Bel)||5|
|27||Jana Kyptova (Cze)||4|
|28||Nicole De Bie - Leyten (Bel)||3|
|29||Daniela Bresciani (Ita)||2|
|30||Francesca Cucciniello (Ita)||1|