European cyclo-cross champion Eli Iserbyt (Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal) hardly put a foot wrong while soloing to victory in the opening UCI Cyclo-cross World Cup in Waterloo, Wisconsin.
The Belgian, having made a key bike change in the penultimate lap, rode away from teammate Michael Vanthourenhout in the closing laps and never looked back. Vanthourenhout held on for second despite a concerted chase effort from Quinten Hermans (Tormans-Circus), who had to be satisfied with the podium.
"I'm very happy, I was a bit nervous before the race because of last weekend I didn't have a great feeling," Iserbyt said. "But when I started here I immediately felt really good. It was good to have Michael together in the beginning of the race. I'm happy to be 1-2 with the team. I think we rode a great race and that's promising for the rest of the season."
Second was fine with Vanthourenhout, saying "Eli was the strongest today so second was the highest possible place today and I'm happy with that."
The rain that started after the women's race caused mayhem for the men, with the course turning slicker than riders had planned for with their tyre choices before the race.
The first victim was Thibau Nys (Baloise-Trek Lions) who crashed on the second lap and was taken from the course by medics with a suspected broken collarbone. Toon Aerts (Baloise-Trek Lions) also crashed through the barriers on a slick downhill turn, while former US champion Stephen Hyde dropped out after lap six.
Hermans, who took the hole shot and the early lead with Vanthourenhout, also crashed on the tarmac.
Hermans said the crash cost him. "Before the crash I felt really strong and really good but with the crash I never got the feeling back. I felt strong on the bike but not strong enough for the win."
From then on the race was dominated by Vanthourenhout and teammate Iserbyt. With another teammate Ryan Kamp riding with Hermans and Lars van der Haar (Baloise Trek), the chase was stalled at 24 seconds at the end of the third lap. Kamp lost touch with the pair on lap four and Van der Haar and Hermans began to claw back some time on the two leaders.
However, it wasn't to be as Van der Haar faded and Hermans continued to lose ground.
At the front, Vanthourenhout began making a series of mistakes, notably nearly came to grief on the slippery descent, allowing Iserbyt to surge back to the lead on lap five.
By the following lap, Vanthourenhout saw Iserbyt gain an unassailable lead while Hermans left Van der Haar behind to chase in third.
|Pos.||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Eli Iserbyt (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen - Bingoal||1:09:37|
|2||Michael Vanthourenhout (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen - Bingoal||0:00:30|
|3||Quinten Hermans (Bel) Tormans - Circus Cyclo Cross Team||0:00:43|
|4||Lars van der Haar (Ned) Baloise Trek Lions||0:01:05|
|5||Niels Vandeputte (Bel) Alpecin - Fenix||0:01:38|
|6||Toon Aerts (Bel) Baloise Trek Lions||0:01:39|
|7||Vincent Baestaens (Bel) CX Team Deschacht-group Hens-containers Maes||0:01:46|
|8||Ryan Kamp (Ned) Pauwels Sauzen - Bingoal||0:01:51|
|9||Jens Adams (Bel)||0:01:54|
|10||Corne van Kessel (Ned) Tormans - Circus Cyclo Cross Team||0:02:05|
|11||Toon Vandebosch (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen - Bingoal||0:02:16|
|12||Daan Soete (Bel) Team Deschacht-group Hens-containers Maes CX||0:02:29|
|13||Kevin Kuhn (Swi) Tormans - Circus Cyclo Cross Team||0:03:04|
|14||Kerry Werner (USA)||0:03:08|
|15||Thijs Aerts (Bel) Baloise Trek Lions||0:03:13|
|16||Davide Toneatti (Ita)||0:03:16|
|17||Anton Ferdinande (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen - Bingoal||0:03:34|
|18||Marcel Meisen (Ger) Alpecin - Fenix||0:03:42|
|19||Pim Ronhaar (Ned) Baloise Trek Lions||0:03:54|
|20||Lance Haidet (USA) L39ION of Los Angeles||0:04:07|
|21||Gage Hecht (USA) Aevolo||0:04:36|
|22||Thomas Mein (GBr) Tormans - Circus Cyclo Cross Team||0:04:40|
|23||Curtis White (USA) Cannondale/Cyclocrossworld||0:05:01|
|24||Michael van den Ham (Can)||0:05:22|
|25||Eric Brunner (USA) Aevolo||0:05:35|
|26||Gosse van der Meer (Ned)||0:05:58|
|27||Scott Funston (USA)||0:06:11|
|28||Lorenzo Masciarelli (Ita) Pauwels Sauzen - Bingoal||0:06:38|
|29||Andrew Strohmeyer (USA)|
|30||Brody Sanderson (Can)|
|31||Scott McGill (USA) Aevolo|
|32||Andrew Dillman (USA)|
|33||Matteo Oppizzi (Swi)|
|34||Lief Rodgers (Can)|
|35||Daxton Mock (USA)|
|36||Caleb Swartz (USA)|
|37||Sam Noel (USA)|
|38||Ben Frederick (USA)|
|39||Emiel Verstrynge (Bel) Tormans - Circus Cyclo Cross Team|
|40||Matt Leliveld (Can)|
|41||Yannick Mayer (Ger)|
|42||Hugo Brisebois (Can)|
|43||Felipe Timoteo Nystrom Spencer (CRc)|
|DNF||Stephen Hyde (USA)|
|DNF||Thibau Nys (Bel) Baloise Trek Lions|
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