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Essen: Hermans happy with his first podium

Essen: Hermans happy with his first podium

The Ethias Cross in Essen gave the start signal of a very busy Christmas period. Maurits Lammertink travelled to the Belgian border for his first cyclocross of the season. The Dutch rider defended the colors of Tormans Cyclo Cross Team, together with Shana Maes and Quinten Hermans. Maes finished 37th in the women's race, which was won by Marianne Vos. In the men's category, Quinten Hermans and Laurens Sweeck took the lead. The leading duo was  joined by Mathieu van der Poel and Thomas Pidcock. The pace in the paddling pool wasn't high enough for the Dutch rider. Hermans put Sweeck under pressure for 2nd place, until the Belgian champion punctured. Hermans, taking his first podium of the season, finished 11 seconds behind winner Mathieu van der Poel. Maurits Lammertink finished 44th. Hermans and Maes will be at the start line again tomorrow in Herentals, with their teammates Kuhn, Mein, Van Kessel and Verstrynge.

Quinten Hermans:
« The podium spots are highly coveted this winter, and the quality of the start list promised another fierce battle for the victory and places of honor. I felt good and I kept an eye on my competitors. The acceleration of van der Poel made me suffer, but I saw the others making some mistakes. This gave me confidence, I'm really happy to finally take my first podium of the season. I was progressing and finally managed to realize what I was aiming for. The consequences of my crash at the Dauphiné lasted a lot longer than I hoped for, but I'm on track now! »

Men Elite:
1.Mathieu Van der Poel
2.Quinten Hermans +0:11
3.Thomas Pidcock +0:18
44.Maurits Lammertink +3R

Women Elite:
1.Marianne Vos
2.Perrine Clauzel +0:08
3.Inge Van der Heijden +0:09
37.Shana Maes +5:47