Skip to main content

Younger Szczepaniak gets his first World Cup win

Image 1 of 23

Kacper Szczepaniak (Poland)

Kacper Szczepaniak (Poland) (Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 2 of 23

A proud Kacper Szczepaniak (Poland)

A proud Kacper Szczepaniak (Poland) (Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 3 of 23

The race podium: Tom Meeusen (2nd, Belgium), Kacper Szczepaniak (1st, Poland) and Arnaud Jouffroy (3rd, France)

The race podium: Tom Meeusen (2nd, Belgium), Kacper Szczepaniak (1st, Poland) and Arnaud Jouffroy (3rd, France) (Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 4 of 23

World Cup winner Tom Meeusen (Belgium)

World Cup winner Tom Meeusen (Belgium) (Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 5 of 23

Tom Meeusen (Belgium) sealed the overall World Cup title

Tom Meeusen (Belgium) sealed the overall World Cup title (Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 6 of 23

Kacper Szczepaniak (Poland) set the fastest lap times throughout the day

Kacper Szczepaniak (Poland) set the fastest lap times throughout the day (Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 7 of 23

Arnaud Jouffroy (France), Tom Meeusen and Kenneth Van Compernolle (Belgium) in the dash for the minor placings

Arnaud Jouffroy (France), Tom Meeusen and Kenneth Van Compernolle (Belgium) in the dash for the minor placings (Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 8 of 23

An emphatic win for Kacper Szczepaniak (Poland)

An emphatic win for Kacper Szczepaniak (Poland) (Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 9 of 23

Kacper Szczepaniak (Poland) wins the final round of the under-23 Cyclo-cross World Cup

Kacper Szczepaniak (Poland) wins the final round of the under-23 Cyclo-cross World Cup (Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 10 of 23

Jerome Townsend (USA) approaching the last run-up.

Jerome Townsend (USA) approaching the last run-up. (Image credit: Dave McElwaine)
Image 11 of 23

The U-23 men start on a long stretch of pavement.

The U-23 men start on a long stretch of pavement. (Image credit: Dave McElwaine)
Image 12 of 23

Zach McDonald (USA)

Zach McDonald (USA) (Image credit: Dave McElwaine)
Image 13 of 23

Kacper Szczepaniak (Poland) checks behind him with one lap to go.

Kacper Szczepaniak (Poland) checks behind him with one lap to go. (Image credit: Dave McElwaine)
Image 14 of 23

Chasers try to nail back Szczepaniak.

Chasers try to nail back Szczepaniak. (Image credit: Dave McElwaine)
Image 15 of 23

Tijmen Eising (Netherlands) riding to 6th place.

Tijmen Eising (Netherlands) riding to 6th place. (Image credit: Dave McElwaine)
Image 16 of 23

Kacper Szczepaniak (Poland) is jubilant with his victory.

Kacper Szczepaniak (Poland) is jubilant with his victory. (Image credit: Dave McElwaine)
Image 17 of 23

Arnaud Jouffroy (France) put up a good fight but had to settle for third.

Arnaud Jouffroy (France) put up a good fight but had to settle for third. (Image credit: Dave McElwaine)
Image 18 of 23

Kenneth Van Compernolle (Belgium) finishing fourth.

Kenneth Van Compernolle (Belgium) finishing fourth. (Image credit: Dave McElwaine)
Image 19 of 23

Jeoeri Adams (Belgium) descending the flyover.

Jeoeri Adams (Belgium) descending the flyover. (Image credit: Dave McElwaine)
Image 20 of 23

Tijmen Eising (Netherlands) descending.

Tijmen Eising (Netherlands) descending. (Image credit: Dave McElwaine)
Image 21 of 23

Jan Denuwelaere (Belgium)

Jan Denuwelaere (Belgium) (Image credit: Dave McElwaine)
Image 22 of 23

Riders run the steep run-up.

Riders run the steep run-up. (Image credit: Dave McElwaine)
Image 23 of 23

Marek Konwa (Poland) running the hill in fifth place.

Marek Konwa (Poland) running the hill in fifth place. (Image credit: Dave McElwaine)

In spite of a terrible start, 20-year-old Kacper Szczepaniak (Poland) bounced back in the mud of Hoogerheide to drop all the favourites in the final laps and take the final round of the Under-23 Cyclo-cross World Cup. Belgian Tom Meeusen was unable to keep up with Szczepaniak, but his second place was more than enough to secure the overall win in the International Cycling Union's (UCI) World Cup presented by Safety Jogger.

Szczepaniak unstoppable after slow start

Winning in Hoogerheide was the last thing on Kacper Szczepaniak's mind after a disastrous first lap, which he finished together with US under-23 Champion Danny Summerhill in 26th position, more than half a minute from the early leader Corne Van Kessel.

However, from the second lap onwards Szczepaniak got going and he started to consistently clock the fastest lap times. In front, Arnaud Jouffroy (France) as leading the race together with Tom Meeusen, though they had just a three second buffer over chasers Tijmen Eising, Jim Aernouts and Jan Denuwelaere.

The duo realized they couldn't get away and after three laps more riders had joined the front, to create an eight-man leading group that featured Jouffroy, Belgians Meeusen, Jan Denuwelaere, Jim Aernouts, Joeri Adams, and Dutch riders Eising and early leader Van Kessel. Szczepaniak launched his comeback and after four laps he joined the front group together with compatriot Marek Konwa and Lubomir Petrus (Czech Republic).

Once Szczepaniak reached the front of the race he continued his efforts as leader's group stretched out in his wake. Meeusen and Aernouts hung on but, during the penultimate lap Szczepaniak was able to create the decisive break. Behind the Polish rider Meeusen controlled affairs in the small first chasing group that featured fellow Belgian Van Compernolle and Jouffroy at five seconds from the leader.

By clocking the fastest lap time of the race on the final lap, Szczepaniak stamped his authority on a well-deserved victory. Meeusen made it a long sprint and he claimed second place ahead of Jouffroy and Van Compernolle. Marek Konwa finished fifth at twenty seconds from his compatriot, Szczepaniak. Kacper's older brother Pawel - who has recently signed a contract with the Baboco-Revor squad - finished tenth a joined the Polish party at the finish line.

While winner Kacper Szczepaniak moved up from his 26nd place after one lap, US-champion Summerhill remained more or less in the same position. Summerhill was joined by compatriot Zach McDonald during the fourth lap and the two remained together until the finishing straight where McDonald bested Summerhill and claimed 29nd place. Jerome Townsend finished 36th and Luke Keogh was 41nd.
 

Results
1Kacper Szczepaniak (Poland)0:48:36
2Tom Meeusen (Belgium)0:00:09
3Arnaud Jouffroy (France)0:00:11
4Kenneth Van Compernolle (Belgium)0:00:13
5Marek Konwa (Poland)0:00:20
6Tijmen Eising (Netherlands)0:00:36
7Joeri Adams (Belgium)0:00:38
8Jim Aernouts (Belgium)
9Micki Van Empel (Netherlands)0:00:39
10Pawel Szczepaniak (Poland)0:00:45
11Corne Van Kessel (Netherlands)0:00:48
12Lars Van Der Haar (Netherlands)0:00:49
13Lubomir Petrus (Czech Republic)0:00:50
14Jan Denuwelaere (Belgium)0:00:53
15Cristian Cominelli (Italy)0:01:06
16Robert Gavenda (Slovakia)0:01:13
17Sascha Weber (Germany)0:01:16
18Jiri Polnicky (Czech Republic)0:01:22
19Matteo Trentin (Italy)0:01:25
20Twan Van Den Brand (Netherlands)0:01:33
21Matthieu Boulo (France)0:01:41
22Karel Hnik (Czech Republic)0:01:49
23Matthias Rupp (Switzerland)0:01:52
24Valentin Scherz (Switzerland)0:01:53
25Ole Quast (Germany)0:02:36
26Marcel Meisen (Germany)0:02:59
27Mattias Nilsson (Sweden)0:03:09
28Elia Silvestri (Italy)0:03:15
29Zach Mcdonald (United States Of America)0:03:23
30Daniel Summerhill (United States Of America)0:03:26
31Jan Nesvadba (Czech Republic)0:03:30
32Yu Takenouchi (Japan)0:03:33
33Kobus Hereijgers (Netherlands)0:03:38
34Irwin Gras (France)0:03:50
35Jan Büchmann (Germany)0:03:51
36Jerome Townsend (United States Of America)0:03:52
37Lukas Winterberg (Switzerland)0:03:56
38Edwin Arts (Netherlands)0:04:02
39Maurits Lammertink (Netherlands)0:04:06
40Kevin Smit (Netherlands)0:04:21
41Luke Keough (United States Of America)0:04:22
42Michael (Jr) Schweizer (Germany)0:04:37
43Naran Khangarid (Mongolia)0:04:48
44David Menger (Czech Republic)0:05:01
45Vincent Baestaens (Belgium)0:05:12
46Fabian Danner (Germany)0:05:25
47Baasankhuu Myagmarsuren (Mongolia)0:05:40
48Hikaru Kosaka (Japan)0:06:25
49Kamil Gradek (Poland)0:06:34
50Geert Van Der Horst (Netherlands)0:06:43
51Dario Stauble (Switzerland)
52Melvin Rulliere (France)0:07:00

 

Latest on Cyclingnews