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Wout van Aert und Annemarie Both In Second Place In Bern

The third run of the Cyclocross World Cup in Switzerland was the best possible publicity for the sport of cyclocross. Spectators saw top-level competition and athletes on the race track and at the STEVENS booth.

Annemarie Worst, Steylaerts 777 riding STEVENS Super Prestige foto: Cor Vos

The UCI World Cup race held by the Swiss organisers of the EKZ Tour offered more than just top-level sports to watch from up close. The day before a youth race and a hobby gravel race took place on a spectacular course within the premises of the Weyermannshaus open air public pool.

STEVENS’ partner Tour de Suisse introduced the current cyclocross range and in addition invited the public to an autograph signing with world champions Sanne Cant and Wout van Aert. The exciting races on a cleverly laid-out circuit, on which the race could be followed from almost everywhere, were great publicity for the sport and bikes on studded tires.

Annemarie Worst of Team Steylaerts 777 confirmed her great form in the third World Cup race in Bern with an offensive riding style. The 22-year old from the Netherlands already had made the podium a couple of times and also won the race of the Super Prestige series in Gieten/NL.

In Bern she also was in at the head of the race, in the second lap of the Weyermannshaus course the former U23 World Champion had advanced to the very front. Previously Marianne Vos got the best start and had taken the lead, followed by Sanne Cant and Katherine Compton.

Then, from the head group, Vos attacked and opened a gap that only Annemarie Worst could close in the fourth of six laps. After her followed Katherine Compton, a little further behind Sanne Cant (IKO-Beobank), Ellen van Loy, Ceylin Del Carmen Alvarado and Worst‘s team mate Alice Maria Arzuffi.

Up to the final lap the two Dutch riders rode in front together, with Worst trying to make the race more difficult for seven-time World Champion Vos by attacking repeatedly. When Vos attacked, Worst at first was able to follow but eventually had to let go. After the finish line, yet, she was able to smile again as the season went very good for her so far.
In the sprint for fourth place Sanne Cant prevailed over Del Carmen Alvarado. Also on STEVENS Super Prestige, Alice Maria Arzuffi of team Steylaerts 777 finished among the top ten in 8th place.

In the Men’s Elite race Wout van Aert got a better start. Maybe the autograph signing the day before had given his morale additional boost. The world champion set a high tempo on his STEVENS Super Prestige that at first only Daan Soete could follow.

In the second lap Mathieu van der Poel caught up and in the third of eleven laps also Lars van der Haar. Since the three-strong head group kept the tempo high, van der Haar soon dropped back. Due to a shifting malfunction van Aert also fell behind, yet was able to catch up to Soete who in turn did not manage to keep up with van der Poel.

In the end the 24-year old World Champion could not close the gap between him and van der Poel, so he finished second for the third time in the season. In the series’ overall ranks Toon Aerts defended his overall lead by finishing third in the Swiss capital ahead of van Aert. Also riding STEVENS Super Prestige Gianni Vermeersch of team Steylaerts 777 comes in 11th, Tim Merlier of Crélan-Charles follows in 15th place.

The next World Cup race will take place on November 17th in Tabor, Czech Republic.

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