How did the world title come about?
Already at the beginning of the cow a nice leading group of fourteen riders arose. It seemed to have started well, but it didn’t quite work out between the riders in the front. At three laps from the end a large chasing group joined us and we again had a peloton of 35 riders.
Not much later, Zoe Bäckstedt and Kaia Schmid decided to attack on the Sint-Antoniusberg. With 35 kilometers to go, Bäckstedt and Schmid turned out to be by far the two strongest women in the race. The duo worked well together and quickly gained a solid lead.
On the last climb of the Wijnpers, Bäckstedt tried to shake the American off, but that turned out to be an impossible task. The American Schmid was fast on the wheel and counted on her sprint to finish it, but that didn’t work out. The two waited for a long time in the final kilometer to start their sprint and continued to ride side by side endlessly. In the end it was a neck-and-neck race and Bäckstedt crossed the line with a wheel lead.
How did the Belgians do?
As expected, the best Belgian in the race was Marith Vanhove. The 18-year-old West Flemish participated in the first flight and afterwards continued to participate well in the chasing group on the front runners. She said beforehand that she would be satisfied with nothing less than a medal, but that did not work out. The Belgian champion eventually finished seventh.
The second best woman in the race was Jade Linthoudt (17), who settled into the thinned peloton. For Julie Hendrickx (18) and Fien Masure (18), the World Cup went a lot less smoothly. The unfortunate Masure was soon involved in a crash and was never able to make up for that deficit.
Anything else notable you should know?
It is gradually not noticeable anymore, but it rained again falls. Let’s hope that the youthful indiscretion has something to do with it and that the women can stay upright longer on Saturday afternoon and the men on Sunday.
1. Zoe Bäckstedt (GBR) 75 km in 1u55’33 ”
2. Kaia Schmid (USA) same time
3. Julie Riedmann (DUI) 57″
4. Elise Uijen (NED) zt
5. Makayla MacPherson (VS) z.t.