Belgium takes bronze in mixed relay

Belgium takes bronze in mixed relay
Belgium takes bronze in mixed relay

Belgium won the bronze medal on Friday afternoon in the mixed relay, the opening competition of the cyclo-cross world championships in Tabor, Czech Republic. After a millimeter sprint, the gold went to France, ahead of Great Britain.

Junior Arthur Van den Boer opened the debates for Belgium in the Czech field and changed into a solid fifth position after the opening round. Promising player Ward Huybs then guided our country to second position, but junior Shanyl De Schoesitter dropped to seventh place. Julie Brouwers meanwhile moved up to fifth place and finally it was up to Belgian pros Sanne Cant and Michael Vanthourenhout to close the gap with the top three. The Belgian champion quickly moved up and over the United States to third place and Vanthourenhout ultimately held on to that position.

The victory went to France. Junior Aubin Sparfel, against expectations, narrowly held off Briton Cameron Mason in the sprint for gold.

The Mixed Team Relay was only on the World Cup program for the third time. In 2022 it was still a test race, last year the Netherlands won the first official edition. Belgium has won bronze in the past two years. The Dutch decided not to defend its title in Tabor, because six interested riders were not found.

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‘Highest achievable’

With a deficit of about half a minute to the British star in the making Cameron Mason, Michael Vanthourenhout had to start the final round of the mixed relay on Friday afternoon in Tabor, Czech Republic and the European champion was unable to close that gap. “A bronze medal was the highest achievable,” Vanthourenhout told the rights holder afterwards Sporza.

Due to night frost and thaw during the day, the course in Tabor was, as usual, very difficult. ‘I did try to get closer, but the course is tough and my legs filled up quickly. So acidification and more than third place was no longer possible. I finished the rest of the lap on reserve. This is a good test for Sunday, because I already know where the difference can possibly be made,” said Michael Vanthourenhout, who finished in 32 seconds.

Belgian champion Sanne Cant was the penultimate to start and immediately guided our country to third place. ‘This is a very tough cross, on a difficult surface. It doesn’t really matter here, but this was quite fun to do. I appreciate the team spirit,” said Cant, who will be competing in the women’s elite on Saturday.

The article is in Dutch


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