Vos dominates in Loenhout

As for now there's nothing to do against the domination of Marianne Vos (Nederland Bloeit) in the cyclo-cross scene. On Wednesday afternoon in Loenhout, Belgium the world champion cruised through the muddy stretches while the pack behind the Dutch star seemed to get stuck in the mud. After her win in 2005 and 2010 Vos once again topped the podium in Loenhout and extended her current season's win streak to eight.

"It was long and far. Boring? Yeah, a bit but you have to remain focused," said Vos. "There was no opposition today but that was caused by the demanding course. After the first lap I already had a big gap and from there I had to stay in the rhythm."

After the third round of the Gazet van Antwerpen Trophy it is compatriot Daphny van den Brand (AA Drink-Leontien.nl) who moves into the overall lead together with British rider Nikki Harris (Telenet-Fidea).

At first Hanka Kupfernagel (Stevens) seemed to rise above the rest in the mud, slightly behind Vos, but the German veteran quickly faded and eventually abandoned the race. A chasing group of five riders formed including Daphny van den Brand, Sanne Cant (Boxx-Veldritacademie), Sophie de Boer (Telenet-Fidea) and British riders Gabriella Day (Renner-Raleigh) and Nikki Harris. Surprisingly top guns Sanne van Paassen (Brainwash) and Pauline Ferrand Prevot (Lapierre International) were unable to keep up with the first chase group.

While Vos quickly gained more than a minute on the first chasers the battle for second place was most entertaining. During the penultimate lap there was an acceleration from Harris which was answered by Cant. Just before going into the last lap the other three riders bridged up as well. Van den Brand, however, moved forward in the last lap. She sneaked ahead of Harris when reaching the first muddy stretch and powered away.

"Only during the last lap my engine started running," Van den Brand told Cyclingnews. "I didn't have the legs today. Yesterday I received a treatment from the physiologist but that didn't do me well with the high amount of races we do these days. I'll have to cancel my appointment for tomorrow."

Vos made no mistakes, showed great skills in the technical sections and enjoyed the applause from the Belgian crowds. No less than 1:17 later Van den Brand placed second and that was enough for the Dutch woman to move into the lead of the GVA-rankings. There was no real sprint for third place as Sanne Cant entered the long finishing straight alone.

Harris captured fourth place which was enough to get equal in points with Van den Brand in the GVA-rankings. The Dutch rider is the official leader because she scored more points in the last race. "I went a bit too early," a somewhat disappointed Harris told Cyclingnews. "My knee still hurts a bit from the crash in Namur and I felt it when I ran; I definitely need to work on that part anyway," Harris said.

Her teammate De Boer was fifth ahead of Gabby Day. While the eventual result could have been slightly better Day will certainly be pleased with her performance in Loenhout.

Sanne van Paassen was seventh ahead of Ferrand Prevot. "I didn't get into the rhythm and felt a bit sore. I knew I was going to get a fallback after my illness," Van Paassen referred to the illness that kept her from riding the World Cup round in Namur. Pavla Havlikova (Telenet-Fidea) and Reza Hormes-Ravenstijn completed the top-10 in Loenhout.

The next round of the GVA-Trophy is held in Baal this coming Sunday on the first day of 2012. There will be no world champion at the start line in Baal as Vos is heading to Luxembourg where she traditionally kicks off the new year in Pétange.

"It's a pity for the overall rankings of the GVA but that's how it is," Vos said. Despite skipping the first round in Ruddervoorde Vos trails leaders Harris and Van den Brand only by five points, together with Sanne Cant. Skipping another round will make an eventual overall win virtually impossible.

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Full Results
1Marianne Vos (Ned) Nederland Bloeit0:43:06
2Daphny van den Brand (Ned) AA Drink - Leontien.nl0:01:17
3Sanne Cant (Bel) BOXX Veldritacademie0:01:26
4Nikki Harris (GBr) Telenet-Fidea Cycling Team0:01:30
5Sophie de Boer (Ned) Telenet-Fidea Cycling Team0:01:37
6Gabriella Day (GBr) Renner Custom Cyclocross Team0:01:41
7Sanne van Paassen (Ned) Brainwash0:02:40
8Pauline Ferrand Prevot (Fra) A C Bazancourt ReimsRow 7 - Cell 2
9Pavla Havlikova (Cze) Telenet-Fidea Cycling Team0:02:45
10Reza Hormes-Ravenstijn (Ned) Orange Babies Cycling Team0:03:33
11Arenda Grimberg (Ned)0:03:49
12Sabrina Stultiens (Ned) Brainwash0:04:28
13Lana Verberne (Ned) RTC Buitenlust0:05:21
14Martina Mikulaskova (Cze) Simunek Cycling Project0:05:28
15Iris Ockeloen (Ned) RTC Groenewoud0:05:45
16Tessa Van Nieuwpoort (Ned)0:06:03
17Nikoline Hansen (Den) Bov CC-Denmark0:06:28
18Nicole De Bie-Leyten (Bel) Telenet-Fidea Cycling Team0:06:46
19Christine Vardaros (USA) Baboco0:06:56
20Katrien Thijs (Bel) K. Edegem Bicycle Club - BMX R0:07:14
21Evy Kuijpers (Ned)0:07:30
22Dirkje Bazuin (Ned) Restore Cycling0:08:32
23Margriet Kloppenburg (Den)0:09:04
24Karia Stepanova (Cze)0:09:29
25Anja Nobus (Bel)-1lap
26Sarah Stewart (Can)Row 25 - Cell 2
27Shana Maes (Bel)Row 26 - Cell 2
28Monique Van De Ree (Ned)Row 27 - Cell 2
29Caren Commissaris (Bel)-2laps
30Lisa Herckmann (Ger)Row 29 - Cell 2
31Anja Geldhof (Bel)Row 30 - Cell 2
32Marijke De Pauw (Bel) WK Noord West BrabantRow 31 - Cell 2
33Madara Furmane (Lat)Row 32 - Cell 2
34Keshia Verbeek (Bel)-3laps
35Janice Geyskens (Bel)Row 34 - Cell 2
36Maaike Lanssens (Bel)Row 35 - Cell 2
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GvA Trofee standings after 3 rounds
1Daphny van den Brand (Ned) AA Drink - Leontien.nl55pts
2Nikki Harris (GBr) Telenet-Fidea Cycling Team55Row 1 - Cell 3
3Marianne Vos (Ned) Nederland Bloeit50Row 2 - Cell 3
4Sanne Cant (Bel) BOXX Veldritacademie50Row 3 - Cell 3
5Sophie de Boer (Ned) Telenet-Fidea Cycling Team45Row 4 - Cell 3
6Gabriella Day (GBr) Renner Custom Cyclocross Team42Row 5 - Cell 3
7Helen Wyman (GBr) Kona Factory Racing39Row 6 - Cell 3
8Sanne van Paassen (Ned) Brainwash39Row 7 - Cell 3
9Reza Hormes-Ravenstijn (Ned) Orange Babies Cycling Team30Row 8 - Cell 3
10Pavla Havlikova (Cze) Telenet-Fidea Cycling Team26Row 9 - Cell 3
11Sabrina Stultiens (Ned) Brainwash24Row 10 - Cell 3
12Joyce Vanderbeken (Bel) Cycling Team Vermeeren22Row 11 - Cell 3
13Arenda Grimberg (Ned)21Row 12 - Cell 3
14Pauline Ferrand Prevot (Fra) A C Bazancourt Reims13Row 13 - Cell 3
15Amy Dombroski (USA) Crankbrothers Race Club12Row 14 - Cell 3
16Nikoline Hansen (Den) Bov CC-Denmark12Row 15 - Cell 3
17Lana Verberne (Ned) RTC Buitenlust12Row 16 - Cell 3
18Maureen Bruno-Roy11Row 17 - Cell 3
19Martina Mikulaskova (Cze) Simunek Cycling Project11Row 18 - Cell 3
20Annefleur Kalvenhaar (Ned) Giant Dealerteams10Row 19 - Cell 3
21Christine Vardaros (USA) Baboco10Row 20 - Cell 3
22Ellen Van Loy (Bel) Kriekel Cycling Team Tessenderlo9Row 21 - Cell 3
23Evy Kuijpers (Ned)9Row 22 - Cell 3
24Githa Michiels (Bel)7Row 23 - Cell 3
25Katrien Thijs (Bel) K. Edegem Bicycle Club - BMX R7Row 24 - Cell 3
26Monique Van De Ree (Ned)6Row 25 - Cell 3
27Iris Ockeloen (Ned) RTC Groenewoud6Row 26 - Cell 3
28Hilde Quintens (Bel) Van Goethem - Prorace Cycling Team5Row 27 - Cell 3
29Nicole De Bie-Leyten (Bel) Telenet-Fidea Cycling Team5Row 28 - Cell 3
30Tessa Van Nieuwpoort (Ned)5Row 29 - Cell 3
31Ilona Meter (Ned) RCP Stevens3Row 30 - Cell 3
32Margriet Kloppenburg (Den)3Row 31 - Cell 3
33Marijke De Pauw (Bel) WK Noord West Brabant2Row 32 - Cell 3

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