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Cyclo-cross World Cup #6 - CDM
Igorre, Spain, December 11, 2005
Wellens wins as Nys' runs out of luck
A shocking day for Sven Nys (Rabobank) and a good day for Bart Wellens (Fidea) has netted the latter his first World Cup victory this year in Igorre, Spain. Wellens claimed a huge win over Petr Dlask (Czech Republic) and Enrico Franzoi (Lampre - Caffita), with the gap to second place nearly a minute. Nys, a victim of various mechanical disasters, could only finish 8th at 1'54.
"This makes me very happy," said Wellens on Sporza. "Together with Sven Nys, I tried to make the race. The last lap would then decide who was the strongest. But when I saw that there were a lot of riders with problems with their derailleurs, I started running. I'm strong there.
"Hopefully I can keep it going next week in Hofstade. I would love to win a jersey, but I also know how difficult that will be."
Nys had his five race winning streak broken by the mud in Igorre. "It had to happen once, but I had a lot of bad luck," he said. "It all happened suddenly. My derailleur went into my back wheel twice, and I punctured. Bart Wellens was good, but without a mechanical I didn't have to be afraid of him. I knew where I could beat him, I was waiting for my chance."
"Actually I should have abandoned. But at the place where I wanted to pull out of the race, our coach was standing, and he convinced me to keep going," concluded Nys, who vowed that he would be back and going for the victory next Saturday in Essen.
How it unfolded
The course in Igorre was both challenging and muddy, and it was no surprise that the gaps opened up wide early on. As usual, it was Nys and Wellens setting the pace, with Petr Dlask chasing a quarter of a minute behind and John Gadret another 15 seconds back. A larger group containing Franzoi, Vanthourenhout, Groenendaal (Rabobank), Vervecken (Fidea) and others was chasing at a minute.
Wellens made his move on Nys just before the halfway point, and the World Champion limited the damage to seven seconds before coming back to Wellens after a lap or so. But then, everything went pear shaped for Nys, as he flatted and had to run to the pit zone. Dlask and Gadret went past Nys while he sorted his bike out, and Wellens naturally put the hammer down and was on track for the win.
It didn't end there for Nys, as when he had just caught Gadret for third, he had more problems with his derailleur going into his wheel. He had to run again and was passed by Franzoi, Groenendaal, Vanthourenhout, Vervecken and Klaas Vantornout. Eventually, he finished ahead of his teammate Groenendaal for eighth place - his worst result of the season.
The podium was rounded out by the impressive Dlask (2nd) and Enrico Franzoi, who overtook Gadret for third. The Italian scored his second World Cup podium finish in four days.
For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here
Images by Oskar Matxinfirstname.lastname@example.org
Images by Roberto Bettini/www.bettiniphoto.net
Elite Men 1 Bart Wellens (Bel) Fidea Cycling Team 58.01 2 Petr Dlask (Cze) 0.59 3 Enrico Franzoi (Ita) Lampre - Caffita 1.17 4 John Gadret (Fra) Jartazi Revor 1.32 5 Sven Vanthourenhout (Bel) Rabobank 1.41 6 Erwin Vervecken (Bel) Fidea Cycling Team 1.47 7 Klaas Vantornout (Bel) 1.50 8 Sven Nijs (Bel) Rabobank 1.54 9 Richard Groenendaal (Ned) Rabobank 1.55 10 Bart Aernouts (Bel) Rabobank 2.18 11 Martin Zlamalik (Cze) 2.32 12 Arnaud Labbe (Fra) Auber 93 3.52 13 Steve Chainel (Fra) 3.55 14 Vladimir Kyzivat (Cze) 4.09 15 Martin Bina (Cze) 4.22 16 Gerben De Knegt (Ned) 4.26 17 Simon Zahner (Swi) 4.29 18 Wilant Van Gils (Ned) Team Skil - Moser 4.42 19 Christian Heule (Swi) Stevens Racing Team 4.57 20 Tim Van Nuffel (Bel) 5.06 21 David Rusch (Swi) 5.28 22 Francis Mourey (Fra) Française Des Jeux 5.46 23 Thijs Al (Ned) B&E Cycling Team 5.56 24 Camiel Van Den Bergh (Ned) Stevens Racing Team 6.43 25 David Derepas (Fra) Jartazi Revor 7.07 26 Malte Urban (Ger) Stevens Racing Team 7.54 1 lap behind 27 Vaclaf Metlicka (Svk) 28 Isaac Suarez Fernandez (Spa) 29 Bart Dirkx (Ned) 2 laps behind 30 Jose Antonio Diez Arriola (Spa) 31 Oscar Vazquez Crespo (Spa) 32 Santiago Armero Sanchez (Spa) 33 Erlantz Uriarte Okamika (Spa) DNF Wim Jacobs (Bel) Fidea Cycling Team DNF David Seco Amundarain (Spa) DNF Jokin Irazola Asua (Spa) DNF Unai Yus Kerejeta (Spa) Bouygues Telecom DNF Davy Commeyne (Bel) Mrbookmaker - Sports Tech DNF Radomir Simunek (Jr) (Cze) Mrbookmaker - Sports Tech DNS Peter Presslauer (Aut) Stevens Racing Team Starters: 39 Classified: 33