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Van der Haar dropped Van Aert in the final lap to conquer the first European Championships; Pauwels completed the podium

Photo: Team Giant-Alpecin

CYCLO-CROSS

NEWS

KEVIN PAUWELS

RIDER PROFILE
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NEWS

LARS VAN DER HAAR

NEWS

WOUT VAN AERT

RIDER PROFILE
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NEWS
07.11.2015 @ 17:39 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Lars van der Haar is the first European champion among the lite men. In the final lap, the Dutchman was stronger than Belgian Wout van Aert. Kevin Pauwels won the bronze medal in Huijbergen.

 

Home rider Tom Meeusen was very motivated and was the first out of the starting blocks. He created a leading group of four with Laurens Sweeck, Michael Vanthourenhout and Frenchman Clément Venturini. Top favorites Wout van Aert and Lars van der Haar did not want to go too deep yet and let them go. Kevin Pauwels had completely missed his start due to a puncture.

 

The Belgians in the breakaway tried to put the surprisingly strong Venturini under pressure and it was Sweeck who turned out to be the best. The neo-pro gained ten seconds on a group which was joined by the top favorites. But in the third round Wout van Aert had had enough of the tactical game. Niels Albert's protege made his first acceleration of the day and only Van der Haar and his compatriot Michael Vanthourenhout could follow. The trio passed Sweeck, but just at that moment Vanthournhout crashed. In this way, the two top favorites suddenly formed a leading pair.

.

With twenty minutes to go, Van Aert again put his Dutch rival under pressure in the sand section. Van Aert got a 10-second advantage and looked like a winner until he suddenly encountered stumbled. Van der Haar benefited optimally, meaning that the two leaders entered the final lap together. In the final lap, Van der Haar made a decisive gap on a small climb. Van Aert tried to get back but reached the inish 20 seconds too late. Kevin Pauwels had no rivals in the battle for bronze.

 

Result

1. Lars van der Haar

2. Wout Van Aert

3. Kevin Pauwels

4. Michael Vanthourenhout

5. Julien Taramarcaz

6. Thijs van Amerongen

7. Laurens Sweeck

8. Corne van Kessel

9. Radomir Simunek

10. Tim Merlier

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