On Saturday it was time for the UCI Gravel Race Aachen. In beautiful weather conditions, around 1000 participants took up the challenge. Overall, Paul Vos (DE) and Tessa Neefjes (NL) took the win. Dutchman Joris Nieuwenhuis finished second and Daan Soete (BE) completed the podium. German rider Carolin Schiff looked like she was going to win but Tessa Neefjes passed her on the last lap. Lorena Wiebes finished in P3.
Andre Greipel was on course for the podium in the M40 class, but crashed. World champion Gianni Vermeersch (BE) had to stop the race due to a mechanical. Greipel finished the race, however. His age group was won by Thijs Zonneveld, who also finished 16th overall. He was not satisfied. "Top 10 overall was my goal," Zonneveld said. "My shoe got broken, had to get off the bike and fix it. After that it became a chase race, but still caught a lot'. For form for Unbound seems good, although Zonneveld will also have to deal with Paul Vos. Our own Rick Groeneweg went for the podium in M40, but finished P5.
At the finish, most of the top riders concluded the course was actually more of a CX course than a gravel round. This was also clearly reflected in the results.
Picture: © Sportograf
Unbelievable but true: it stayed pretty much dry in the Vosges, although it was quite cold. Just over 2,000 participants took up the challenge. The UCI qualifier was won by 2-times Marmotte winner Michiel Minnaert (BE) and world champion Martha Maltha (NL). In the men's event, Moritz Beinlich (DE) came in second, Björn de Decker (BE) third. It was a Belgian party anyway, as no fewer than seven riders in the top 10 were Belgian.
In the women's race, Julia Schallau (DE) took second place, no less than 20 minutes behind the winner. Frenchwoman Aurore Pauchet finished third. Complete results here.