Puck Pieterse conquers crash-riddled World Cup Hulst

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Shaiba Pieterse (Alpecin-Deceuninck) excelled in a wet and wild edition of the World Cup Hulst.

Pieterse claimed his second consecutive World Championship win, a race that saw off his main rival Fem Van Empel.

Series dominant Van Empel (Pawels Sauzen-Bingoal) and in-form Pieterse were locked in the third lap when Powells Sauzen-Bingoal’s ace fell hard at the bottom of a tricky downhill.

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The 20-year-old had to stop, straighten her bars, reinstall her chain and ride the failed rear mech to the pits.

“I started really fast and got a gap, but Fem closed it in the second or third lap,” Pieterse said.

“When he caught up, he fell and his derailleur was in emergency mode and his bike got a bit of a wobble, so I was there for a few seconds and then I had to push myself.”

Van Empel suffered in the third lap and Pieterse took the win. But it wasn’t all smooth sailing for Peters, who also crashed several times in the increasingly difficult conditions on the boggy, technical course.

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Pieterse later admitted that Van Empel’s misfortune could change as his foe moved into second place, more than 40 seconds behind.

Shireen van Unruij (Baloise Trek Lions) was third in the standing race, succeeding in 1:47.

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Pieterse said: “It was very difficult to get to the top and I felt Fem was stronger in that part.” “So I got a bit lucky today with Fem’s downfall – otherwise we’d be in war one and two.”

Pieterse won his second World Championship in eight days to close the gap on points leader Van Empel ahead of next weekend’s race in Antwerp.

“Obviously, I’m very happy about it,” Pieterse said.

Results generated by FirstCycling.com


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