Cyclocross Nations Wrap-Up, Part 1

Photo courtesy of Sasha Eysymontt | flickr.com/photos/sashae

After a weekend of exciting racing across Europe and in the United States, we provide our wrap-up of the 14 national championships the took place over the weekend. While we didn’t outright pick winners, we did hint heavily at who we thought would prevail. As a result, our wrap-up states our “pick,” the actually winner, and what you need to know. We cover everything from lingerie to a 46-year-old podium finisher and everything in between. Read on and enjoy.

Austria

Our Pick: Peter Presslauer
Winner: Daniel Geismayr
Notes: Our preview focused on Peter Presslauer, who has been the best Austrain by far this season. We also mentioned Matthias Brandle, Karl Gollinger and 41-year-old Thomas Mair as potential challengers. Bottom line: we weren’t even close. Karl Gollinger finished third, behind Alexander Gehbauer and the new national champion Daniel Geismayr. Everyone else we mentioned failed to finish. However, here’s the most impressive stat: Geismayr won by four minuets. Impressive.

Luxembourg

Our Pick: Gutsy Bausch
Winner: Gutsy Bausch
Notes: 32-year-old Gutsy Bausch picked up the victory in Luxembourg a head of Christian Helmig and 46-year-old Pascal Triebel. Triebel becomes the oldest man to finish on a national championship podium this year and the second oldest man to pick up UCI points. Interestingly, all of the podium was over 30 years old. Also, there’s some mild confusion as the UCI still has Helmig as a German citizen.

Great Britain

Our Pick: Paul Oldham
Winner: Ian Field
Notes: Field was the unkown on Sunday and finally picked up a well deserved national title in Ipswitch. Field has had a solid season, but historically underpreformed in the British championships. The battle between Paul Oldham and Jody Crawforth came down to a battle for third after Liam Killeen came out of nowhere finishing a meager three seconds behind Field. Crawforth got the best of Oldham for third place.

Spain

Our Pick: Javier Ibanez
Winner: Isaac Fernandez
Notes: Isaac Fernandez was one of two riders we mentioned who shouldn’t be counted out. Fernandez won a spectacular four-man sprint a head of Egoitz Rekalde, Sergio Gutierrez and Aketza Iza. The rest of the top-ten was well over a minute behind the lead group. Javier Ibanez had a bad day, finishing ninth.

Italy

Our Pick: Marco Fontana
Winner: Marco Fontana
Notes: An incredibly muddy course met the riders in Vadenza where Marco Fontana once again proved he’s the best, beating Marco Bianco and Cristian Cominelli by 40 seconds. Cominelli continues to impress and has surely secured as spot on the worlds team. The other favorites, Elia Silvestri, Fabio Ursi, Luca Damiani and Enrico Franzoi finished well over a minute behind Fontana.

Switzerland

Our Pick: Chrisitan Heule
Winner: Julien Taramarcaz
Notes: I apologize for saying in our preview that Julien Taramarcaz would not be in attendance. Apparently the start list I found was incomplete. Anyway, Taramarcaz was able to get away from a strong, five-man group that had mixed it up throughout the muddy race in Switzerland. Simon Zahner, our wildcard rider finished second a head of Christian Heule. Heule will wind down his career over the next few weeks and hopes to end it with a top-ten at worlds.

Germany

Our Pick: Philipp Walsleben
Winner: Christoph Pfingsten
Notes: 12 riders crossed the finish line in Kleinmachnow, lead by new champion Christoph Pfingsten. While we gave the edge to Walsleben, Pfingsten has ahad a great season and deserved to win the title. He beat Walsleben by 41 seconds. Showing how dominate these two riders are in the their country, Marcel Meisen finished third, 2:32 behind Pfingsten. However, Meisen is only 23-years-old and provides a promising future for Germany.

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