Belgium’s Wout van Aert gave the home crowd reason to cheer on day two of the Cyclocross World Championships as he won the men’s elite ahead of Lars van der Haar in second.
Both riders began the final lap together having gapped the rest of the field but when van der Haar faded on the final incline, van Aert pulled away to win comfortably.
The race didn’t go totally to plan for the winner however, as halfway through a tangle with Mathieu van der Poel resulted in the Dutch rider putting his foot through van Aert’s wheel, but fortunately both riders were able to recover.
Thalita De Jong overcame a disappointing start to eventually fight back and and claim victory in the Women’s elite race.
After trailing the leaders by more than 20 seconds De Jong managed to reduce the gap in under two laps to catch up with the front of the race just before the final lap.
The strain of that effort didn’t show however as De Jong then edged in front of Sanne Cant before slowly gapping the Belgian rider to win.
Great Britain’s Nikki Harris finished in fifth position having led early on.
Women’s Under 23
Great Britain’s Evie Richards won the maiden Women’s Under 23 category by a comfortable margin of more than half a minute.
The 18-year-old began the race in the third-row but after gaining the lead she continued to pull away in the three remaining laps.
However the race will remain in the headlines for other reasons after an electronic motor was reportedly found contained inside the bike of Belgian teenager Femke van den Driessche.
Men’s Under 23
Eli Iserbyt claimed Belgium’s first gold medal of the championships when he out-sprinted Adam Toupalik to the finish line.
Toupalik thought he had won the race on the penultimate lap as he began celebrating with his arms aloft in the air only to realise there was still a further lap to go.
Coming into the final stretch Iserbyt clung to Toupalik’s wheel and timed his sprint to perfection to pick off his rival just metres before the finish.