Wout van Aert repeats as Belgian cyclo-cross national champion

Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) dominated the elite men’s Belgian Cyclo-cross National Championships, living up to his tag as 'favourite' with a dominant start to finish ride on the fast, sandy course in Middelkerke on the Belgian coast.

Van Aert won the sprint from the start line to the short first climb and never looked back. He was soon clear alone and then gained around 20 seconds per lap for much of the race.

After an hour and nine laps of racing he was able to ease up and savour his fifth national title. 

Laurens Sweeck (Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal) emerged from the chasing group to win the silver medal at 1:16 back, with Quinten Hermans (Tormans) taking the bronze medal at 1:27. 

Toon Aerts (Baloise Trek Lions) had appeared to be a podium contender but a mid-race spill cost him time and he finished seventh at 2:11. Eli Iserbyt (Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal) suffered a bad start, soon lost contact and opted to quit the race.

Van Aert celebrated by holding up five fingers to indicate his five national titles. He is also the current Belgian national road race champion.    

"This means a lot. Five is a very nice number. I attach great importance to this jersey and few people have won five titles. Now I can ride in it again for a whole year, on the road and in cyclo-cross," Van Aert said, explaining that his high five and then wave was a gesture from when he went to school. 

He kept his race tactics as simple and fun as his winning gesture. 

"I tried to take advantage of being the big favourite. I knew that if I gave everything I could, there might be a quick race for second place," he said, shrugging off any disappointment of not winning all 10 of the cyclo-cross races in his winter campaign. His run was disrupted by a mechanical problem in the recent Hulst World Cup race.

"I am certainly not going to complain, but it makes it even more unfortunate that I had bad luck in Hulst. Well, I won the most important race of my winter," he said about Sunday's race. 

Van Aert will now travel to the Jumbo-Visma training camp rather than the cyclo-cross World Championships in Fayetteville, in the USA. His cyclo-cross season is done for the year while his road racing season is still under construction. 

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Wout van Aert (Bel) Jumbo-Visma 0:58:11
2Laurens Sweeck (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen - Bingoal 0:01:16
3Quinten Hermans (Bel) Tormans Cyclo Cross Team 0:01:27
4Jens Adams (Bel) 0:01:34
5Gianni Vermeersch (Bel) Alpecin - Fenix 0:01:40
6Michael Vanthourenhout (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen - Bingoal 0:01:54
7Toon Aerts (Bel) Baloise Trek Lions 0:02:11
8Daan Soete (Bel) CX Team Deschacht-group Hens-Containers Maes 0:03:04
9Toon Vandebosch (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen - Bingoal
10Tom Meeusen (Bel) CX Team Deschacht-group Hens-Containers Maes 0:03:16
11Tim Merlier (Bel) Alpecin - Fenix 0:03:31
12Thijs Aerts (Bel) Baloise Trek Lions 0:04:36
13Niels Vandeputte (Bel) Alpecin - Fenix
14Diether Sweeck (Bel) Iko - Crelan 0:04:55
15Arne Vrachten (Bel) 0:05:12
16Seppe Rombouts (Bel) 0:05:33
17Lander Loockx (Bel) CX Team Deschacht-group Hens-containers Maes 0:05:43
18Julian Siemons (Bel) 0:05:56
19Yentl Bekaert (Bel) Baloise Trek Lions 0:06:20
20Mathijs Wuyts (Bel)
21Jens Gys (Bel)
22Ingmar Uytdewilligen (Bel)
23Kenneth Van Compernolle (Bel)
24Kenny Roelandt (Bel)
25Nick Peers (Bel)
26Thomas Verheyen (Bel)
27Grégory Careme (Bel)
28Senne de Meyer (Bel)
29Jonas Degroote (Bel)
30Siebe Tormans (Bel)
31Yelle Leaerts (Bel)
32Julien Kaise (Bel)
33Maarten Van Staeyen (Bel)
34Tim de Schuyter (Bel)
35Maxime Van Wynsberghe (Bel)
36Andy Ruts (Bel)
37Niels Koyen (Bel)
38Pieter Meelberghs (Bel)
39Lenn Verdijck (Bel)
40Jochem Danckaers (Bel)
DNFRobin Alderweireld (Bel)
DNFEli Iserbyt (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen - Bingoal
DNFVincent Baestaens (Bel) CX Team Deschacht-group Hens-containers Maes
DNFGlenn Verbeeck (Bel)

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Stephen Farrand
Head of News

Stephen is the most experienced member of the Cyclingnews team, having reported on professional cycling since 1994. He has been Head of News at Cyclingnews since 2022, before which he held the position of European editor since 2012 and previously worked for Reuters, Shift Active Media, and CyclingWeekly, among other publications.

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