Van Riel wins back to back Wuustwezel titles.

By Paul Groves | 24 Jun, 2018

A really busy weekend sees racing in Romania, in Belgium and in Spain. Luckily, the team was present in Wuustwezel to ensure that the race got good coverage. You can read the article in full here.

But, for those of you who have not yet started to learn Flemish, let’s see what happened.

Martin Van Riel did the double by winning back to back at the 2018 Wuustwezel ETU Sprint Triathlon European Cup. Surrounded by hundreds of partisan supporters in his home town, he won the race in a hi-octane sprint for the line against the American Morgan Pearson. Daniel Hoy, NZL came home third. For the women, Kirsten Nuyes had a fantastic race to come home with silver behind the Kiwi, Nicole Van Der Kaay, with another New Zealander rounding off the podium, Kiri Atkin.

The New Zealander, Van Der Kaay has Dutch roots and was immediately at home in Wuustwezel. In third after the swim, she stayed safely in the large peloton and followed that with a fast 5k. Kirsten Nuyes was helped along by teammate Joni Heerink. The two Dutch women were riding hard and this resulted in Nuyes coming home with silver and Heerink in 4th.  For Atkin, after her crash in Weert, and with her parents following the race closely from the other side of the world, the result is a satisfying one.

For Nuyes, “I had never expected that I could get second place here. I was given start number 3 but there were some pretty fast girls racing. Thanks to Joni Heerink, who really helped me on the bike. When you lead out of T2, then you automatically get a mental advantage. I ran well and with all those spectators, it was a dream come true.”

Amongst the men, the whole town of Wuustwezel was hoping for a second victory for Marten Van Riel. The home crowd’s favourite had a good swim over the 750m and then tried for a breakaway with three escapees. Halfway around the 20k course they were caught by the group. Frenchman, Dylan Magnien tried a breakaway but the peloton that arrived n T2 was big.
Van Riel immediately pushed to the front and found himself with Daniel Hoy and Morgan Pearson. The American had raced last weekend in Antwerp and had gone under the 15 minutes over the final 5k. Pearson tracked Van Riel and waited for the kick but it was Van Riel who had the edge.

“I had hoped to win the sprint finish but hadn’t reckoned on the home crowds. They were screaming him on and making him dig deeper,” Pearson explained. “We were right into the red. Fantastic race, amazing public. Belgium has made a really good impression in these past few days,” said the American.

Marten Van Riel echoed Pearson, “It really is thanks to the supporters that I was able to win here. I knew that Pearson was a danger in the run but the crowds made sure that I could really dig down deep. I am so thrilled to have won here.”

Don’t forget to check out the link to for the live updates and re-live the race.

For an amazing set of photos, click this link.

(foto: Vanacker}

Related Event: 2018 Wuustwezel ETU Sprint Triathlon European Cup
23 Jun, 2018 • event pageall results
Results: Elite Men
1. Marten Van Riel BEL 00:51:39
2. Morgan Pearson USA 00:51:42
3. Daniel Hoy NZL 00:51:48
4. Tony Smoragiewicz USA 00:51:59
5. Ian Manthey IRL 00:52:01
6. Declan Wilson AUS 00:52:02
7. Luke Burns AUS 00:52:07
8. Jack Willis GBR 00:52:11
9. Márk Dévay HUN 00:52:12
10. Kyle Smith NZL 00:52:13
Results: Elite Women
1. Nicole Van Der Kaay NZL 00:58:29
2. Kirsten Nuyes NED 00:58:54
3. Kiri Atkin NZL 00:59:11
4. Jony Heerink NED 00:59:26
5. Ainsley Thorpe NZL 00:59:30
6. Jolien Vermeylen BEL 00:59:34
7. Bianca Bogen GER 00:59:35
8. Kyleigh Spearing USA 00:59:38
9. Caroline Pohle GER 00:59:44
10. Severine Bouchez BEL 00:59:51