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by Matt de Neef
November 6, 2017
In today’s edition of the CT Daily News Digest: Jacopo Mosca wins the Tour of Hainan, Joe Cooper claims final stage; Van der Poel and Cant win European CX titles; Mark Cavendish wins the Saitama Criterium; Ben Hill suffers fractured vertebrae in Tour of Hainan crash; Rider kicked off Tour of Hainan for fighting with rival team; Trek expands its Domane range with new gravel-specific builds; Jonathan Vaughters calls for franchise structure for pro cycling; Dutch cyclist forced to retire at 22 due to heart problem; Jersey revealed for Contador/Basso Continental team; Aqua Blue Sport reveals 3T Strada 1x setup for 2018; Danny MacAskill testing Santa Cruz wheels.
Mathieu van der Poel (Netherlands) and Sanne Cant (Belgium) have been crowned European CX champions after winning their respective races at the continental championships in Tabor, Czech Republic on Sunday.
Van der Poel opened his race-winning gap on just the second lap of the race, distancing Lars van der Haar (Netherlands) by bunny-hopping barriers that van der Haar decided to run. Van der Poel would ride the rest of the race solo, finishing nearly a minute clear of van der Haar.
The battle for the bronze medal was a tight one, with a group of 12 riders vying for the final step on the podium. Michael Vanthourenhout (Belgium) created a gap on the final lap but his compatriot Toon Aerts was able to bridge the gap and won the sprint for third with a bike throw.
The elite women’s race was a much tighter affair with world champion Sanne Cant winning the race in a sprint against Lucinda Brand (Netherlands).
Cant, Brand, Annemarie Worst (Netherlands) and Alice Marie Arzuffi (Italy) emerged as the strongest riders in the race before Worst was dropped, leaving just three at the front on the final lap. Arzuffi fell off the back as Brand ramped up the pace but the Dutchwoman couldn’t shake Cant. The pair came to the final straight together before Cant came around her rival to win in the rainbow stripes. Arzuffi held on for third place, some 42 seconds behind the winner.