Posted by Editoress on 05/3/12
The Canadian Junior Men’s squad landed in Belgium last week and since then have enjoyed unprecedented success, finishing both races with a Canadian presence in the Top 5, including a victory by Benjamin Perry.
On a 20 lap, 3.6 kilometre circuit consisting of mixed concrete blocks, bricks, and cobbled climbs, with a smooth paved descent, the Canadian U19 men’s team have clearly made their presence felt in Belgium.
After being in all of the early moves, two riders established a breakaway. The break consisted of Benjamin Perry (St. Catharines, ON) and Quinten Hermans (Young Telenet Fidea, 4th at 2012 Cyclo-cross World Championships), and steadily increasing their gap throughout the duration of the race.
With the rest of his Canadian team-mates protecting his lead, Perry comfortably went on to win the two-person sprint at the finish line. Behind, the Team Canada riders all placed well in their respective groups.
The U19 Canadian Men's team continue their strong showing at the Inter Club level on May 1st, when Belgium celebrated Labour Day, and what better way to celebrate than having a road race. The 'Inter Club' level events are a series of Belgium Cup races held throughout the season. Along with the Canadian National squad, at the start line were many local Belgian and Dutch teams, plus New Zealand’s Hayden McCormick, a Track World Championships medallist.
The course was held on the flat roads south of the industrial city of Antwerpen, and was comprised of five twenty kilometre laps. By European standards, the roads were wide, making the chances of a long breakaway difficult.
The Canadian squad did a very good job of representing the National colors at the front of the peloton. A break opened up a significant lead, and included Canada's Benjamin Perry, winner of the previous race. Building up a maximum lead of fifty five seconds, the group was absorbed by the chasing peloton after fifty kilometres of freedom.
When Hayden McCormick attacked with ten kilometres remaining in the event, only eight athletes were able to respond, which included Canada's Ben Perry, who was fourth at the finish.
“I'm glad that I went for it,” said Perry. "What a great day and a great race."
Behind, his team-mates did a fantastic job of shutting down the chasing efforts, particularly Ben Chartrand. Max Toeldte and Brandon Etzel gained valuable experience in the elbow-to-elbow nature of bunch sprints at this level.
The Canadian junior riders will race twice more this weekend, at the Wortegem Inter Club and the Overijse Kermess.
Report courtesy CCA
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