European Cross Country Championships - Bronze Medalist Fez Cata Blanca

European Cross Country Championships – Bronze Medalist Fez Cata Blanca

Fez Cata Blanca won a bronze medal on Saturday at the European (cross-country) cyclocross championships in Namur, Belgium.

Defending champion Lucinda Brand was missing from the 22-man field, breaking the right metatarsal bone a week earlier, and several Dutch opponents who did well at the World Cup started in the under-23 age group. Among others, there was world champion Marianne Voss and her Dutch compatriot Wim van Impel, who has won four World Cup races so far.

The 21-year-old Fez, who won a silver medal last year, managed to start from the first row at Namur, which was rated as one of the toughest on the competition calendar and was a bit muddy due to the rain. In the past few days. He got off to a good start, right at the start of the climb, the champion Hungarian SD Worx bike managed to stay on top.

On the trail, which includes difficult and steep climbs, steep technical straits due to mud, and technical slopes that include the risk of falling, the bike’s excellent handling featured the Olympic fourth-placed mountain biking right from the start. The perfect track is a little muddy. At the end of the first lap they drove with Van Empel, on the second lap they had already passed the entrance to the warehouse, when the very promising Dutch competitor had to return to change bikes due to a puncture, losing more than twenty seconds.

Fez continued to lead accompanied by two Dutchmen, Denis Betsima and the 2020 World Cup and European Championship gold medalist Celine del Carmen Alvarado, and Van Impel reached the waist of the three of them in the six round competitions. First, Betsema broke off all fours, then on the heights on the penultimate lap, Vas fell too. Alvarado wasted time due to slipping, so Van Impel, who had been considered a leading candidate even before that, was left alone in the lead and, thanks to a confident race, won gold as the first among adults in 20 years. She was able to celebrate her eighth win in her ninth competition of the year – as well as a runner-up – while at the same time winning the fifth consecutive Women’s European Championship for the Netherlands.

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Alvarado finished second, and Fez won third with a great performance, even having time to chat with some spectators at the finish line.

The result (based on the procyclingstats of the professional portal):

Ladies, European Champion:

Wim van Impel (Netherlands) 50:25 min

2. Celine del Carmen Alvarado (Netherlands), 22 seconds behind

3. Fez Cata Blanca 36 sec h.

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