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71st Nationale Sluitingprijs - 1.3

Putte-Kapellen, Belgium, October 12, 2004

2003 Results    Results    Past winners

Van Heeswijk the fastest in Belgian season closer

Max Van Heeswijk (US Postal) marks his 13th victory this season at the 71st Sluitingsprijs in Putte-Kapellen. The Dutch rider was the strongest in a final sprint of about 25 breakaway riders. His countrymen Steven de Jongh and Hans Dekkers, both from Rabobank, finished second and third placed.

How it unfolded

The first surprise at the start in Putte-Kapellen was that Frank Vandenbroucke, the only "star" of the peloton that should have been present, was not - due a problem with his car. He was stuck in Kortrijk and the 144 riders that did depart left without him. And what a start! They hit off very fast, and a breakaway of 11 quickly escaped the bunch (Wilfried Cretskens, Steven de Jongh, Aart Vierhouten, Erwin Thijs, Bert Hiemstra, Rudi Kemna, Bert Roesems, Benny De Schrooder, Jos Pronk, Geert Steurs and the German Dennis Haueisen). As their lead grew to about a minute, a counter-attack formed (Kevin Hulsmans, Jurgen Van Goolen, Hans Dekkers, Stijn Devolder, Max van Heeswijk, Roy Sentjens, Andy De Smet, Rik Reinerink, Matthé Pronk, Remco van der Ven, Matthew Gilmore, Bert Scheirlinckx, Arthur Farenhout, Jos Lucassen, Jeroen Boelen, Pieter Uytterhoeven and Tommy Van de Gehuchte) and caught the front group. The 29 men then stayed out of reach of the peloton, although the bunch did not make it easy for them. After a few attacks by Cretskens and Devolder with Farenhout, which weren't successful, the inevitable sprint was won by Van Heeswijk, clearly the strongest at that point.

"Actually my season is already over," said the 31 year-old US Postal rider. "I'll be riding the Amsterdam Six Days with Jimmy Madsen on Monday. But I did have to stay in shape for that, so I did two or three hours training per day, and then Paris-Tours. The last 100 km there was understandably a bit much. That's why I thought of abandoning this race halfway. But when I made the decisive break, with my sprinter's legs I couldn't do anything else but go for the win. On the last lap, I kept an eye on Steven de Jongh and I let Stijn Devolder make the pace on the final kilometre so that nobody could escape. Then I won easily in the end - it's actually a worthy end to my best season as a pro."


1 Max Van Heeswijk (Ned) US Postal Service p/b Berry Floor    3.42.08 (47.9km/h)
2 Steven De Jongh (Ned) Rabobank
3 Hans Dekkers (Ned) Rabobank
4 Benny De Schrooder (Bel) Vlaanderen-T Interim
5 Tommy Van De Gehuchte (Bel) Jong Vlaanderen 2016
6 Matthé Pronk (Ned) BankGiroLoterij
7 Roy Sentjens (Ned) Rabobank
8 Aart Vierhouten (Ned) Lotto-Domo
9 Rik Reinerink (Ned) Chocolade Jacques-Wincor Nixdorf
10 Remco Van Der Ven (Ned) BankGiroLoterij
11 Wilfried Cretskens (Bel) Quick.Step-Davitamon
12 Andy De Smet (Bel)
13 Jeroen Boelen (Ned) Van Hemert-Eurogifts
14 Jurgen Van Goolen (Bel) Quick.Step-Davitamon
15 Erwin Thijs (Bel)
16 Bert Roesems (Bel) Relax-Bodysol
17 Bert Hiemstra (Ned) Chocolade Jacques-Wincor Nixdorf
18 Paul Van Schalen (Ned) AXA Cycling Team
19 Geert Steurs (Bel) Jong Vlaanderen 2016
20 Matthew Gilmore (Bel) Vlaanderen-T Interim
21 Jos Lucassen (Ned) AXA Cycling Team
22 Bert Scheirlinckx (Bel)                     0.12
23 Dennis Haueisen (Ger) RSH GS III
24 Arthur Farenhout (Ned) AXA Cycling Team                       0.15
25 Stijn Devolder (Bel) US Postal Service p/b Berry Floor        0.18
26 Kevin Hulsmans (Bel) Quick.Step-Davitamon                     1.01
27 Bert De Waele (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-Colnago                   2.37
28 Peter Wuyts (Bel)
29 Jurgen Van Loocke (Bel)
30 Jan Pockrandt (Ger)
31 Reinier Honig (Ned) Cycling Team Bert Story-Piels
32 Jurgen Roelandts (Bel) Jong Vlaanderen 2016
33 Tyler Farrar (USA) USA National Team
34 Lex Nederlof (Ned)
35 Jean-Paul Simon (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-Colnago
36 Patrick Köhler (Ger) VC Frankfurt Radteam-Brügelmann
37 Jens Renders (Bel)
38 François Franse (Ned)
39 Bart De Spieghelaere (Bel) Vlaanderen-T Interim
40 Boudewijn De Graaff (Ned)
41 Marvin Van Der Pluijm (Ned)
42 Rob Koole (Ned)                                               2.50
43 Stefan Van Dijk (Ned) Lotto-Domo
44 Michael Blanchy (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Wincor Nixdorf
45 Gert Steegmans (Bel) Lotto-Domo                               6.12
46 Sam Van Rooy (Bel) Jong Vlaanderen 2016
47 Robert Slippens (Ned) AXA Cycling Team

Past winners

2003 Nick Nuyens (Bel) Quick.Step-Davitamon 
2002 Geert Omloop (Bel) Palmans-Collstrop
2001 Wesley Van Speybroeck (Bel) Lotto-Adecco 2000 Steven De Jongh (Ned) Rabobank 1999 Dave Bruylandts (Bel) Lotto-Mobistar 1998 Wilfried Peeters (Bel) Mapei 1997 John Talen (Ned) 1996 Peter Spaenhoven (Bel) 1995 Tom Steels (Bel) 1994 Maarten Den Bakker (Ned) 1993 Wim Omloop (Bel) 1992 Paul Hagedoorn (Bel) 1991 Herman Frison (Bel) 1990 Ludo Giesberts (Bel) 1989 Benj. Van Itter­Beeck (Bel) 1988 Jerry Cooman (Bel) 1987 Adrie van der Poel (Ned) 1986 Adrie van der Poel (Ned) 1985 Jean-Marie Wampers (Bel) 1984 Dirk Heirweg (Bel) 1983 Adri van der Poel (Ned) 1982 Luc Colyn (Bel) 1981 Jan Bogaert (Bel) 1980 Patrick Lerno (Bel) 1979 Frans Van Looy (Bel) 1978 Jos Jacobs (Bel) 1977 Frans Van Looy (Bel) 1976 Herm. Van Springel (Bel) 1975 Johan Van Katwijk (Ned) 1974 Frans Van Looy (Bel) 1973 G. Van Roosbroeck (Bel) 1972 G. Van Roosbroeck (Bel) 1971 Roger Swerts (Bel) 1970 Dan. Van Rijckeghem (Bel) 1969 René Pijnen (Ned) 1968 Frans Brands (Bel) 1967 Eddy Merckx (Bel) 1966 Henk Nijdam (Ned) 1965 Frans Brands (Bel) 1964 Gustave Desmet (Bel) 1963 Gustave Desmet (Bel) 1962 Ludo Janssens (Bel) 1961 Piet Rentmeester (Ned) 1960 Emile Daems (Bel) 1959 Joseph Planckaert (Bel) 1958 Karel De Baere (Bel) 1957 Roger Decock (Bel) 1956 Roger Verplaetse (Bel) 1955 Karel De Baere (Bel) 1954 Jean Bogaerts (Bel) 1953 Joseph Schils (Bel) 1952 René Janssens (Bel) 1951 René Janssens (Bel) 1950 Arthur Mommerency (Bel) 1949 André Declerck (Bel) 1948 Léon Dhaenekyndt (Bel) 1947 Albert Ramon (Bel) 1946 Victor Jacobs (Bel) 1945 Theo Middelkamp (Ned) 1943 Frans Hotag (Bel) 1938 Albert Geysen (Ned) 1937 Karel Kaers (Bel) 1936 Frans Dictus (Bel) 1935 Gust Reyns (Bel) 1934 Kemper Horemans (Bel) 1933 Leo De Rijck (Bel) 1932 Leo De Rijck (Bel) 1931 Fred De Vocht (Bel) 1930 Georges Ronsse (Bel) 1929 Zander Maes (Bel) Past winners by Mario Stiehl,