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Cant dominates in the sand at the Ruddervoorde Superprestige

Sanne Cant was all business at the starting line

Sanne Cant was all business at the starting line (Image credit: Dave McElwaine)

New European champion Sanne Cant (Enertherm-BKCP) transformed the third round of the Superprestige in Ruddervoorde into a one-woman show on Sunday, riding away alone in the sand at the end of the first lap before completing a long solo ride to victory. On the podium she was flanked by compatriots Ellen Van Loy (Young Telenet-Fidea) and Jolien Verschueren (Young Telenet-Fidea).

“I felt good straight from the start and these were a fun 40 minutes. It’s the first time this season that I felt powerful,” Cant told Sporza after her dominant victory.

Cant strengthened her lead in the Superprestige series after Nikki Harris (Young Telenet-Fidea) abandoned the race during the second lap. She drops to fifth overall with 28 points. Cant now has 45 points. Verschueren is second with 39 points. Maud Kaptheijns (AA Drink-Kalas) finished fifth in Ruddervoorde and now has 32 points in the season-long competition. Helen Wyman (Kona Factory Team) lost the battle with Verschueren for third place and is now fourth overall in the Superprestige standings with 31 points.

AS is often the case, Wyman had the best start on the fast Vrijgeweide start-finish road surface. She was marked by Cant and Van Loy. Harris didn’t feature in the top-five, while Jolien Verschueren had a bad start and was outside the top-15.

“Once again the start was a problem. I didn’t get away well and ended up at the back. Then you make stupid mistakes to get to the front. I crashed too. Then I focused on passing rider per rider. I no longer believed in the podium,” Verschueren said.

In front Cant set a blistering pace and only Wyman and Van Loy were able to keep up. At the end of the 2600 metres long course on the Pyfferoen meadow, the long sand section was perfect for a powerful rider like Cant. She rode through the whole sand section while Van Loy and Wyman were forced to hop off their bikes.

“I just had to make sure that I rode my own pace and arrive fresh at the sand section. Each time I was able to extend my lead over there,” Cant said.

Crashes and time gaps split the race 

Cant held on to a lead of 10 seconds over Van Loy who soon dropped a fading Wyman. Harris was in fourth place at 25 seconds from Cant after the opening lap but in the second lap she abandoned the race. In the background Verschueren worked hard to move up through the pack but was trailing Cant by 38 seconds. The gap between Cant and Van Loy remained the same for most of the third lap; with Wyman was losing ground as Verschueren got her in sight. After a tumble from Van Loy in the fourth of five laps, Cant extended her lead from 10 seconds to nearly 20 seconds. She was I control.

“I crashed at a difficult corner,” Van Loy explained. “After a near standstill you had to turn and I overdid it there. I was riding on my limit and still had to close those 10 seconds on Cant. The sand isn’t my preferred area and she rode through it every lap.”

Cant and Van Loy were sure of their podium spots during the final lap, with the best action going on behind them. Wyman and Verschueren were duelling for third place. The crowd cheered Verschueren forward and she had most left in their tank but kept making several technical mistakes. She eventually passed Verschueren and rode well enough through the final sand section to hold off Wyman.

“The crowds kept shouting that it was possible. I’m satisfied with third place,” Verschueren said.

More than a minute behind Wyman, young Maud Kaptheijns who finished sixth ahead of Joyce Vanderbeken. New under 23 European champion Femke Van den Driessche (Kleuren Op Maat) was eighth ahead of Karen Verheestraete (Kleuren Op Maat) and Italian champion Alice Maria Arzuffi (Selle Italia - Guerciotti).

The next round of the Superprestige series is held next week in Asper-Gavere, Belgium on Sunday November 15.


#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Sanne Cant (Bel) Team Ciclismo Mundial0:40:38
2Ellen Van Loy (Bel) Young Telenet Fidea Cycling Team0:00:24
3Jolien Verschueren (Bel) Young Telenet Fidea Cycling Team0:00:39
4Helen Wyman (GBr) Matrix Fitness Vulpine0:00:56
5Maud Kaptheijns (Ned) AA-Drink-Kalas Team0:02:05
6Joyce Vanderbeken (Bel) Wielerteam Decock-Van Eyck0:02:26
7Femke Van Den Driessche (Bel) Kleur Op MAAt - Nodrugs0:02:33
8Karen Verhestraeten (Bel) Kleur Op MAAt - Nodrugs0:02:44
9Maria Arzuffi Alice (Ita) Inpa Sottoli Giusfredi0:03:02
10Loes Sels (Bel) Young Telenet Fidea Cycling Team0:03:11
11Christine Majerus (Lux) Boels Dolmans Cycling Team0:03:32
12Bianca Van Den Hoek (Ned) Parkhotel Valkenburg0:03:45
13Lucia Gonzalez Blanco (Spa) Lointek Team0:04:23
14Chiara Teocchi (Ita) Uci0:04:46
15Sara Casasola (Ita) Team Sud Tirol Campana Imballaggi0:05:03
16Fleur Nagengast (Ned) Young Telenet Fidea Cycling Team0:05:18
17Maria Erlandsson Asa (Swe) Varbergs Mtb/Haibike0:05:45
18Laure Bouteloup (Fra) Les Bleus De France0:05:50
19Floor Weerink (Ned) Wsv Emmen0:06:04
20Alicia Gonzalez Blanco (Spa) Lointek Team0:06:18
21Katrien Thijs (Bel) Kleur Op MAAt - Nodrugs0:06:33
22Axelle Bellaert (Bel) AA-Drink-Kalas Team0:06:38
23Elena Valentini (Ita) Italy0:06:46
24Shana Maes (Bel) AA-Drink-Kalas Team0:07:03
25Suzanne Verhoeven (Ned) Zzpr.Nl-Orange Babies0:07:16
26Marthe Truyen (Bel) Kalas Cycling Team 990:07:47
27Gertie Willems (Bel) Kleur Op MAAt - Nodrugs0:07:56
28Mieke Deroo (Bel) Beernem Cycling Team0:08:05
29Aurelie Vermeir (Bel) Kon. Vc ´T Meetjesland - Knesselare0:08:39
30Jinse Peeters (Bel) Acrog - Balen Bc-1 lap
31Birgit Massagé (Bel) Kleur Op MAAt - Nodrugs
32Sabine Hey (Ned) Wv Breda-2 laps
33Katrina Jaunslaviete (Lat) Ct Pajuris
34Jana Dobbelaere (Bel) Kon. Vc ´T Meetjesland - Knesselare
35Bo Vandermeulen (Bel) Wc De Molenspurters Meulebeke-3 laps
36Tatiana Vanparys (Bel) Cycling Team Oostkust
37Cindy Diericx (Bel) Individueel
38Maaike Lanssens (Bel) Wc De Molenspurters Meulebeke
DNFNikki Harris (GBr) Young Telenet Fidea Cycling
DNFMargriet Kloppenburg (Den) Inthemud.CX
DNFAnja Geldhof (Bel) Napoleon Games - St Martinus
DNFAnke Van Rompay (Bel) Kleur Op Maat - Nodrugs
DNFJara Noël (Bel) AA-Drink-Kalas Team
DNFYnske Van Tichelt (Bel) De Kastelse Durvers V.Z.W.

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