With a crash early in the race that took him away from the podium, Toon Aerts (Baloise Trek Lions) finished ninth 2:07 behind winner Michael Vanthourenhout (Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal) and secured the overall title for the X2O Trofee Series badkamers.
Aerts, who has finished second in the series for the past three consecutive seasons, had an overwhelming 7:23 aggregate lead over Eli Iserbyt (Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal) going into the eighth and final round. Even with Iserbyt finishing second in the final contest, Aerts only lost 1:43 to him to win the series.
Vanthourenhout proved to be the best on Sunday, with his first series victory earning him third place overall in the series.
“I gave it my all for three or four laps, enough for the win. Now I’ve won three times, I can speak of a good season,” he told Sporza after the finish.
It was his first return to the top step of the podium in 14 races, his last victory at the Namur World Cup in December. Iserbyt claimed two consecutive second places this weekend, 24 seconds behind Vanthourenhout, while Jens Adams, 36 seconds behind, claimed his first podium of the year with a third place.
As the 39 riders came out of the hole, Aerts backed off when he inadvertently broke off his pedal and hit the deck. He was in hunting mode from there.
After the first pass, it was a 100% Pauwels Sauzen affair with Laurens Sweeck closely followed by Vanthourenhout then Iserbyt leading a chasing group just over five seconds behind.
On the fourth of the nine laps, Vanthourenhout finally started and began to overtake other drivers. Leading the chase was the duo of Jens Adams and Iserbyt. It took another lap for Lars van der Haar (Baloise Trek Lions) to emerge and make a pass to Sweeck.
Iserbyt attacked on the final circuit to get rid of Adams as they stretched the times for the podium, while Aerts finished to celebrate the goal of the season.
“My race was ruined anyway, luckily I already had the overall win,” Aerts said after finishing in the top 10. World Cup. It was a fiasco, but I’m happy to have won.”
|pos.||Rider name (country) Team||Results|
|1||Michael Vanthourenhout (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen – Bingoal||0:59:34|
|2||Eli Iserbyt (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen – Bingoal||0:00:24|
|3||Jens Adams (Bel)||0:00:36|
|4||Lars van der Haar (Ned) Baloise Trek Lions||0:00:51|
|5||Laurens Sweeck (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen – Bingoal||0:01:16|
|6||Timon Rüegg (Swi) Cross Team Legendre||0:01:28|
|seven||Thijs Aerts (Bel) Baloise Trek Lions||0:01:51|
|8||Kevin Kuhn (Swi) Tormans Cyclo Cross Team||0:02:00|
|9||Toon Aerts (Bel) Baloise Trek Lions||0:02:07|
|ten||Vincent Baestaens (Bel) CX Team Deschacht-Group Hens-Containers Maes||0:02:29|
|11||Toon Vandebosch (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen – Bingoal||0:02:36|
|12||Ryan Kamp (Ned) Pauwels Sauzen – Bingoal||0:02:44|
|13||Felipe Orts Lloret (Thermes)||0:02:53|
|14||David Menut (Fra) Cross Team Legendre||0:02:59|
|15||Daan Soete (Bel) CX Team Deschacht-Group Hens-Containers Maes|
|16||Tom Meeusen (Bel) CX Team Deschacht-Group Hens-Containers Maes|
|17||Timo Kielich (Bel) Iko – Crelan||0:03:37|
|19||Horn Van Kessel (Ned) Tormans Cyclo Cross Team||0:04:10|
|20||Steve Chainel (Fra) Cross Team Legendre||0:05:14|
|21||Arne Vrachten (Bel)||0:05:47|
|22||Mathijs Wuyts (Bel)|
|23||Ingmar Uytdewilligen (Bel)|
|24||Mickaël Crispin (Fra) Cross Team Legendre|
|25||Julian Siemons (Bel)|
|26||Koen Van Dijke (Ned)|
|27||Thomas Verheyen (Bel)|
|28||Siebe Tormans (Bel)|
|29||Jens Gys (Bel)|
|30||Gilles Mottiez (Swi) Cross Team Legendre|
|31||Kenneth van Compernolle (Bel)|
|32||Jonathan Anderson (USA)|
|33||Maarten van Staeyen (Bel)|
|34||Andy Ruts (Bel)|
|35||Nicola Parenti (Ita)|
|36||Tetsuki Kaji (Japan)|
|37||Silas Schmid (Switzerland)|
|38||Gauthier Heymes (fra)|
|DNF||Diether Sweeck (Bel) Iko – Crelan|