Belgian Championship

Verstrynge, Wyseure and Hermans celebrate together

This national championships weekend will be long remembered in the history of Tormans Cyclo Cross Team. The day after the title of Luxembourgish Marie Schreiber, all six riders involved this Sunday in the race for the national title managed to earn a medal. Three became champions, while the other three finished on the second or third steps of the podium.

This Sunday got off to a flying start in Middlerkerke, along the coast, where the tension was palpable ahead of the U23 race of the Belgian Championships. With the bit between his teeth, Emiel Verstrynge immediately took control of the race. But once he got to the first stretch of sand, his front wheel stuck in a mound and he went to the ground.

Despite his crash, Verstrynge completed the eventful first lap in the lead, joined by Jente Michels and his teammate Joran Wyseure. From halfway through to the last lap, Verstrynge and Wyseure put pressure on Michels, one responding to the accelerations, the other remaining within seconds in pursuit.

Finally, as they approached the beach on the last lap, Verstrynge created the decisive gap and reached the finish line as the winner, becoming Belgian cyclo-cross champion at 19. On his 21st birthday, Joran Wyseure finished third and joined his teammate on the podium, concluding an exemplary collective performance.

“What an incredible day! I didn't expect to become Belgian U23 champion, honestly. But thanks to Joran Wyseure, who constantly kept the pressure on Michels a few seconds away from us, I was in an ideal position. As the fourth rider was further away, I could afford to wait. We have often come so close to victory this season, and in the championships we also finished close to the podium. Getting the win here, plus Joran on the podium, is a perfect day."

“I am very satisfied with this medal, what a great way to celebrate my birthday! It was very intense and frustrating at times to stay a few seconds behind Emiel and Michels. It took mental toughness, every time I got closer, Michels accelerated again. But so I kept putting the pressure on Michels and Emiel was able to wait, save his strength to deliver a fantastic final lap!"

Immediately after, Quinten Hermans took the start of the Elite race and enjoyed an excellent start on the sandy circuit. Behind the favorite Wout Van Aert, Hermans was the first pursuer alongside Toon Aerts, then Laurens Sweeck. After thirty minutes of racing, it seemed more and more likely that Hermans and Sweeck would challenge for second place behind Van Aert. Although he had a near-faultless technical race, a chain problem definitely denied Hermans from the fight for silver medal on the penultimate lap. The rider from Tessenderlo, third at the finish, grabbed his first medal at the Belgian championships in the Elite category.

“I had to wait several years, but now I finally got my first medal at the Belgian championships in the Elite category! Third place was probably the highest for me, although without my chain problem I could have stayed in the fight for silver. Because of the sun it was sometimes difficult to choose lines in the sand, Sweeck and I made an effort to get away from the chase and I made a mistake. This podium is the result of several months of hard work. Between November and the beginning of December, I worked a lot on endurance and then I prepared for the busy festive period with specific training in the dirt. I hope to enjoy this form some more in the coming weeks, because I dream of the opportunity that awaits me at the Worlds in Fayetteville later this month. "


U23 men
1.Tormans CX47:55
2.Jente MichelsAlpecin Fenix+0:12
3.Tormans CX+0:28
Elite men
1.Wout Van AertJumbo Visma58:11
2.Laurens SweeckBingoal Pauwels Sauzen+1:16
3.Tormans CX+1:21

General Classification