Meeusen disconsolate after illness forces him out of bpost bank round one
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Sunday, October 14, 2012

Meeusen disconsolate after illness forces him out of bpost bank round one

by Kyle Moore at 4:08 PM EST   comments
Categories: Cyclocross, Injury
 
Wellens and Peeters also struggle on tough day for Telenet-Fidea

Tom MeeusenTom Meeusen (Telenet-Fidea) has seen his cyclo-cross season get off to a rough start, and the Belgian was forced to drop out of the bpost bank trofee opening race in Ronse on Sunday. In the newly named cup series, which is now ranked by time rather than accumulated points, Meeusen and Telenet-Fidea team-mates Bart Wellens and Rob Peeters all suffered setbacks.

Meeusen was forced out by illness, while Wellens finished 7th, 2’07” behind race winner Niels Albert (BKCP-Powerplus). Peeters was 10th, 2’57” back. Race runner up Kevin Pauwels (Sunweb-Revor) has the overall lead in the standings after the first race, thanks to an early time bonus and a four-second defeat at the hands of Albert.

What was ultimately a bad day for Telenet-Fidea had started bright. Peeters got the hole shot along with Meeusen, and both carried out good first laps. For Meeusen, stomach issues that had affected his training arose again on Sunday.

“My stomach and my intestines are completely upside down,” he said afterward. “I had power in my legs but I couldn’t go into the red. During training the last few days I felt that something was faltering, but I had not expected that it would be so bad.”

After a fast start, Meeusen began fading, losing each riding group that came up to him. After disappearing completely from the front, the Belgian dropped out.

“There was no sense in persisting,” he added. “If you feel that your body will not allow you to carry your speed, of course you cannot perform. Then something is wrong. I hope it goes away quickly. This is not good for the cup.

“I’ll rest and I’ll listen to everyone to whom I should listen. I work on my training schedules down to the most minute detail. I don’t really know what I’m doing wrong. The bad thing about today is that my ambitions for a good bpost bank trophy have been completely wasted.”

After taking the early lead, Peeters admitted that the start was too much for him. Last year’s runner up in the World Championships finished 10th in Ronse and will be looking to improve his form as the season gets going.

“I started too quickly and afterwards I paid for it,” he stated. While Albert and Pauwels were clearly on good days, Peeters could only briefly hang in before falling back. “I could join them for a few hundred meters, and then no more,” Peeters said. “Then I searched for my own rhythm and it went a little better. Too bad, as normally the course in Ronse suits me, though not today.”

For Wellens, it was a simple case of bad legs, and the Belgian veteran said afterward that 7th was the best he could manage.

“I reached the maximum. To do better was not an option,” he stated. “I did not have good legs. That can happen.

“Normally walking uphill is my strongest point,” he said of the hilly Ronse course. “Today I crawled like a snail up the ramp. Seventh was the best [I could do]. I wanted more, but it was not possible.”

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