Tough day for Field and Harding at UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships

Tough day for Field and Harding at UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships

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Ian Field finished 37th in the elite men’s race at the UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships in Luxembourg as Belgium’s Wout van Aert retained his world title.

The Belgian rider dominated the early stages alongside Netherland's Mathieu van der Poel, before the Dutchman suffered a rear puncture and was unable to recover and catch his opponent after a bike change.

For van Aert, who became elite world champion for the first time in 2016, the result had seemed unlikely in the opening exchanges as van der Poel took a lead, and maintained it for several laps.

But a puncture suffered after colliding with a barrier following a descent cost the Dutchman the world title.

Van Aert’s compatriot Kevin Pauwels took bronze.

Field, who started in the back rows, started reasonably well to move ahead of some of his rivals before suffering a puncture himself, costing him several places. The British champion finished 37th, two laps behind van Aert.

After the race, he admitted he was frustrated with how the day had progressed.

"I know it's the same for everyone but it's frustrating when you're holding back a bit and not racing on the limit because you don't want to puncture again.

"It's a bit of a funny one, but that's world championships. One of those days."

Under-23 men

Billy Harding finished 37th in the under-23 race as Dutch rider Joris Nieuwenhuis dominated on the mud in Bieles.

Great Britain Cycling Team's Billy Harding

The Netherlands rider broke clear on the first lap to lead by around 20 seconds, and rode the rest of the race on his own on his way to victory, ultimately winning the world title by a minute and 23 seconds.

Felipe Orts became the first ever Spanish under-23 male to win a world cyclocross medal, racing clear of his rivals to win silver, celebrating with a wheelie as he crossed the line.

Nieuwenhuis’ teammate Sieben Wouters pipped Belgium’s Thijs Aerts to bronze after a strong finish.

Harding, who started in the back row, rode well in the opening lap to pass a number of riders, but the under-23 British champion found the pace and conditions challenging and crashed on one occasion.

He finished 37th, one lap off the race winner and said he enjoyed the experience, despite the challenges.

"Really hard today, tough all morning. I didn't really have the legs, I didn't feel too great. I was riding well on the technical sections and the downhills but I didn't really have the oomph to go with it today."

Gallery

Great Britain Cycling Team at the 2017 UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships - day two

Results

Elite men

Under-23 men

GREAT BRITAIN CYCLING TEAM KIT

Great Britain Cycling Team kit