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Photo ©: Schaaf

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4th Grote Prijs Sven Nijs - C2

Baal, Belgium, January 1, 2002

2002 Results    Results     Past winners

Sven Nijs: three from four

For the third time in four years, Sven Nijs has won his hometown event in Baal on New Year's Day. After wins in Essen and Loenhout, it was his third win in the Gazet van Antwerpen Trofee, meaning he now has a lead of 16 points in the series, ahead of Bart Wellens and Mario De Clercq. It was also his 11th victory this season, and so far no-one has bettered this.

The third win in front of his own people was no walk-over. Sven Nijs did not indulge on New Year's Eve, but neither did his main rivals, who were out to try and put one over him. That meant a fast start, with Bart Wellens doing his usual early burst out of the blocks, only to quickly fade again.

Five riders formed a leading group: Sven Nijs, Richard Groenendaal, Mario De Clercq, Ben Berden and Sven Vanthourenhout. On the particularly heavy parcours, "I didn't know where to ride because there was so much water," said Nijs.

Groenendaal took the lead in the early part of the race, getting a small gap at the end of the first lap, but De Clercq and the others marked him closely. A lap later, after Erwin Vervecken had abandoned, Groenendaal attacked again. Nijs rode hard to take his wheel, but the others also managed to catch back on. Groenendaal attacked once more, getting rid of Vanthourenhout and De Clercq, while Nijs and Berden remained.

Berden dropped out of the reckoning after a crash, leaving the two Rabobank riders in front. Then when Nijs attacked, Groenendaal couldn't follow, and the Belgian started to ride clear. But Nijs wasn't home yet, as the always tough De Clercq began to claw his way back. He overtook Berden and Groenendaal, and could see Nijs ahead of him in the final lap. However, De Clercq was forced to settle for second place, 12 seconds behind Nijs, with Berden and Groenendaal taking third and fourth respectively.

"I showed here that I can also go deep, when the gap is only 10 seconds," said Nijs. "I had to do that for my own race. But I will not do that on Thursday in Sint-Niklaas. Afterwards I will rest for two days in preparation for the World Cup in Lieven. A little bit of recovery after this hard race will do well. It was really hard."

Report courtesy of Marc Van Landeghem


1 Sven Nijs (Bel) Rabobank                     58.07
2 Mario De Clercq (Bel) Palmans-Collstrop       0.12
3 Ben Berden (Bel) Vlaanderen-T Interim         0.18
4 Richard Groenendaal (Ned) Rabobank            0.29
5 Vaclav Jezek (Cze) Author Praha               1.25
6 Sven Vanthourenhout (Bel) Domo-Farm Frite     1.32
7 Bart Wellens (Bel) Spaar Select               1.59
8 Peter Van Santvliet (Bel) Spaar Select        2.25
9 Tom Vannoppen (Bel) Palmans-Collstrop         2.59
10 Gerben De Knegt (Ned) Rabobank               3.31
11 Tim Van Nuffel (Bel)                         4.15
12 Roger Hammond (GBr) Palmans-Collstrop        4.41
13 Wim Jacobs (Bel)                             4.55
14 Bart Aernouts (Bel) Rabobank                 4.59
15 Jonathan Page (USA) Richard Sachs            5.58
16 Robert Glajza (Svk)                          6.26
17 Cyrille Bonnand (Fra) ESP Persan             6.56
18 Nico Henderickx (Bel) Pizza Italia           7.04
19 Geert Wellens (Bel)                          7.24
20 Maarten Nijland (Ned)                        7.44
21 Vaclav Metlicka (Svk)                        8.06
22 Geert Vandaele (Bel) KWC Geluwe              8.17
23 Tom De Kort (Bel)                            8.39
24 Eddy Van Bouwel (Bel)                        9.31
25 David Laenen (Bel) WSCJR Booischot          11.05
26 Kris Wouters (Bel) WC Vorselaar             1 Lap
27 Tom Pynaert (Bel)
28 Sten Raeymakers (Bel)
29 Kevin Pauwels (Bel)
30 Steven Roach (GBr)
Starters: 44
1 Eddy van Ijzendoorn (Ned)                    36.00
2 Sebastiaan Langeveld (Ned)
3 Niels Albert (Bel)                            1.05
4 Egon van Kessel (Ned)                         1.30
5 Alois Lievens (Bel)                           2.30
6 Bram Wind (Ned)                               4.00
7 Jeroen Dingemans (Bel)
8 Pieter Van Loo (Bel)
9 Enrico Liebe (Ned)
10 Tim Milis (Bel)                             1 Lap
11 Giljan Jacobs (Bel)
12 Carlo Kempeneers (Bel)
13 Steffen Vanderhoydonck (Bel)
14 Alain van der Velde (Ned)
15 Kristof Luyten (Bel)
16 Sven Verbeeck (Bel)
Starters: 17
1 Ricardo van der Velde (Ned)                  26.07
2 Stijn Joseph (Bel)                            1.05
3 Dries Dewit (Bel)                             1.37
4 Quentin Bertholet (Bel)                       2.04
5 Jan Van Zeebroeck (Bel)
6 Gianni Dewolf (Bel)
7 Steven Van Bael (Bel)
8 Jan Van Dael (Bel)
9 Tom Lambrechts (Bel)
10 Jo Pirotte (Bel)
11 Matthias Onghena  (Bel)
12 Sam Solia  (Bel)
13 Jeffrey Maes (Bel)
14 Birger Leys (Bel)
15 Arno Portugaels (Bel)
16 Koen Heremans (Bel)
17 Tom Ceulemans (Bel)
18 Bart Wouters (Bel)
19 Wim Vanleene (Bel)
20 Thomas Boeckx (Bel)
21 Kristof Mellemans (Bel)
Starters: 22 

Gazet van Antwerpen Trofee classification after round 5

Elite Men
1 Sven Nijs (Bel) Rabobank                       163 pts
2 Bart Wellens (Bel) Spaar Select                147
3 Mario De Clercq (Bel) Palmans-Collstrop        142
4 Peter Van Santvliet (Bel) Spaar Select         132
5 Richard Groenendaal (Ned) Rabobank             121
6 Gerben De Knegt (Ned) Rabobank                 111
7 Erwin Vervecken (Bel) Spaar Select              97
7 Tom Vannoppen (Bel) Palmans-Collstrop           97
9 Ben Berden (Bel) Vlaanderen-T Interim           73
10 Sven Vanthourenhout (Bel) Domo-Farm Frit       72
11 Arne Daelmans (Bel) Vlaanderen - T Inter       63
12 Christian Heule (Swi) Team Cologne             32
13 Davy Commeyne (Bel) Palmans-Collstrop          24
14 Roger Hammond (GBr) Palmans-Collstrop          17
Elite without contract/U23
1 Wim Jacobs (Bel)                                85 pts
2 Tim Van Nuffel (Bel)                            68
3 Vaclav Jezek (Cze)                              51
4 Tom De Kort (Bel)                               49
5 Bart Aernouts (Bel) Rabobank                    45
6 Geert Wellens (Bel)                             43
7 Eddy Van Bouwel (Bel)                           42
8 David Laenen (Bel) WSCJR Booischot              36
9 Thijs Verhaegen (Ned)                           35
10 Jonathan Page (USA)                            34
11 Bert Vervecken (Bel)                           29
12 Kris Wouters (Fra) WC Vorselaar                27
13 Kevin Bossaerts (Bel)                          23
14 Jef De Boeck (Bel)                             21
14 Camiel van den Bergh (Ned)                     21
16 Klaas Vantornout (Bel)                         19
17 Kevin Pauwels (Bel)                            18
17 Sten Raeymakers (Bel)                          18
19 Dariusz Gil (Pol)                              17
20 Matthew Ellis (GBr)                            16
21 Stijn Penne (Bel)                              15
21 Robert Glajza (Svk)                            15
23 Tadeusz Korzeniewski (Pol)                     14
23 Cyrille Bonnand (Fra)                          14
25 Isaac Suarez (Spa)                             13
25 Tim Pauwels (Bel)                              13
25 Nico Henderickx (Bel) Pizza Italia             13
28 Gusty Bausch (Lux)                             12
29 Maarten Nijland (Ned)                          11
30 Vaclav Metlicka (Svk)                          10
31 Pedro Baelen (Bel)                              9
31 Jan Geerts (Bel)                                9
31 Geert Vandaele (Bel) KWC Geluwe                 9
34 Krzysztof Kuzniak (Pol)                         4
34 Tom Pynaert (Bel)                               4
36 Radoslav Czapla (Pol)                           3
37 Mike Thielemans (Bel)                           2

Past winners

2002 Mario De Clercq (Bel) Domo-Farm Frites
2001 Sven Nijs (Bel)
2000 Sven Nijs (Bel)