January 3, 2021
Cyclo-Cross World Cup 2021 – 4 – Hulst
The UCI Cyclo-cross World Cup is a season-long competition in cyclo-cross, organised by the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI).
January 3, 2021
Cyclo-Cross World Cup 2021 – 4 – Hulst
The UCI Cyclo-cross World Cup is a season-long competition in cyclo-cross, organised by the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI). First held in the 1993–1994 season, there are currently five awards, tailored to the different categories of riders: Men Elite, Women Elite, Men Under 23, Women Under 23, and Men Junior. The World Cup is not to be confused with the World Championship, also organised by the UCI, which is a single one day race that awards the winner with a rainbow jersey to be worn in every race till the next World Championship. Typically the World Championships are held a week or two after the end of the World Cup at the end of January or early February.
Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix) took his eighth win of the 2020-21 cyclo-cross season in Hulst, winning the penultimate round of the UCI World Cup at a canter.
The Dutchman went back-to-back this weekend after his Gullegem win, beating World Cup leader Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) into second place by 1:31. Tom Pidcock (Trinity Racing) rounded out the podium a further 18 second back after a hard battle with the Belgian.
“It’s almost a home win,” Van der Poel said after the race. “There are very few races in the Netherlands so it’s super nice to have one here today. I enjoyed the race and had some really good legs today so that helps.
“If you see last week, I was almost three minutes behind Van Aert so I don’t think it means anything [for the Worlds]. It’s the shape of the day which determines the gaps a little bit. I felt really strong today and I’m glad I can finish my first block of races in this kind of shape.”
Van der Poel had been in total command of the race since the second lap, where he powered away from the peloton with no answer from any of his rivals, including Van Aert, who was within eight seconds at the GP Sven Nys on New Year’s Day and beat the Dutchman by 2:49 in the thick mud of Dendermonde at the previous World Cup round.
Van Aert suffered a mix-up in the pits on that second lap, his mechanic missing a bike change and costing the Belgian precious seconds, while Van der Poel and Toon Aerts (Baloise Trek Lions) were out front.
By the end of the lap, Van der Poel was alone ahead of a chase group consisting of Van Aert, Aerts and Michael Vanthourenhout (Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal), while Pidcock quickly joined them.
Vanthourenhout’s teammate Eli Iserbyt, who was returning from an elbow injury suffered at the Boxing Day Superprestige race in Zolder, wasn’t up there, having been forced to abandon after a fall on the first lap.
Out front, Van der Poel was comfortable in the lead, growing a 20-second gap on lap three to a minute’s advantage at the midway point. Van Aert pushed on behind, but had no way to catch his rival, while only Pidcock could keep up with his pace.
Eventually, Pidcock fell back, too, hanging in with the Jumbo-Visma man until the final lap of the hour-long race. By that point, Van der Poel was home and dry, flexing a bicep as he rolled across the line for another win.
With one round to go – in Overijse on January 24 – Van Aert keeps the lead of the World Cup rankings, knowing that finishing second place or higher will be enough to secure overall victory. He sits on 125 points to Van der Poel’s 110, with 40, 30 and 22 points going to the podium finishers. Vanthourenhout still has a mathematical chance of victory too – he lies third on 106 points.
1 Mathieu Van der Poel (Ned) Alpecin-Fenix 1:05:27
2 Wout Van Aert (Bel) Jumbo-Visma 0:01:31
3 Thomas Pidcock (GBr) Trinity Racing 0:01:49
4 Michael Vanthourenhout (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal 0:02:41
5 Toon Aerts (Bel) Baloise Trek Lions 0:03:07
6 Lars Van der Haar (Ned) Baloise Trek Lions 0:03:19
7 Quinten Hermans (Bel) Tormans 0:03:32
8 Laurens Sweeck (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal 0:03:37
9 Ryan Kamp (Ned) Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal 0:04:12
10 Corne Van Kessel (Ned) Tormans 0:04:46
11 Pim Ronhaar (Ned) Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal 0:04:54
12 Gianni Vermeersch (Bel) Credishop-Fristads 0:05:01
13 Joris Nieuwenhuis (Ned) Team DSM 0:05:07
14 Thijs Aerts (Bel) Baloise Trek Lions 0:05:11
15 Daan Soete (Bel) Group Hens-Maes Containers 0:05:14
16 Kevin Kuhn (Swi) Tormans 0:06:04
17 Tim Merlier (Bel) Alpecin-Fenix 0:06:24
18 Anton Ferdinande (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal
19 Yentl Bekaert (Bel) Baloise Trek Lions
20 Ben Turner (GBr) Trinity Racing
21 Curtis White (USA) Cannondale-Cyclocrossworld
22 Timo Kielich (Bel) Credishop-Fristads
23 Timon Rüegg (Swi) Cross Team Legendre
24 David Menut (Fra) Cross Team Legendre
25 Mees Hendrikx (Ned) Credishop-Fristads
26 Vincent Baestaens (Bel) Group Hens-Maes Containers
27 Ivan Feijoo Alberte (Spa) Nest-Skoda Alecar
28 David Van der Poel (Ned) Alpecin-Fenix
29 Michael Boroš (Cze)
30 Felipe Orts Lloret (Spa) Teika-BH-Gsport
31 Ugo Ananie (Fra) Cross Team Legendre
32 Valentin Guillaud (Fra)
33 Kevin Suarez Fernandez (Spa) Nest-Skoda Alecar
34 Michael Van den Ham (Can)
35 Mario Junquera san Millan (Spa)
36 Mathieu Morichon (Fra)
37 Luke Verburg (Ned)
38 Maik Van der Heijden (Ned)
39 Aurélien Philibert (Fra) Ardennes Cross Team
40 Nicolas Samparisi (Ita) KTM Alchemist p/b Brenta Brakes
41 Mickaël Crispin (Fra) Cross Team Legendre
42 Stan Godrie (Ned)
43 Tom Mainguenaud (Fra)
44 Lorenzo Samparisi (Ita) KTM Alchemist p/b Brenta Brakes
45 Arthur Tropardy (Fra)
46 Cédric Pries (Lux)
47 David Conroy (Irl)
48 Jonathan Anderson (USA)
49 Andrew Giniat (USA)
50 Jules Van Kempen (USA)
DNF Thomas Mein (GBr) Tormans
DNF Eli Iserbyt (Bel) Pauwels Sauzen-Bingoal