GP OST Manufaktur

Grand-prix OST-Manufaktur 2013

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26th Grand-prix OST-Manufaktur
regional road race for elite riders (cat 1.12)
01.05.2013 - Bech

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Three riders in the wind

In the recent past, the team of Differdange was often dominant at the Grand-prix OST-Manutfaktur with a total of 5 victories before today, but never, they have been as superior as today. Three riders of Gabriel Gatti's squad eventually have left all the others behind them and they took all three positions on the podium, being free to decide themselves on the winner of the day, young Luxembourger Kevin Kohlvelter.

At 14h30 in the afternoon, 63 riders took the start of the 26th edition of the Grand-prix OST-Manufaktur and, just as for the Grand-prix François Faber, a few last-minute cancellations have weakened the opposition. The Dutch riders were all there and a few non-announced Belgians travelled to Bech, but the Profel-Prorace team around the recent overall winner of the Tour du Jura, Jérôme Giaux, didn't show up at all after a few of their riders had to deny their participation. Others were present in Bech but were not able to participate in the race due to the regulations, such as those U23 riders who didn't know that there had been a race for them in the morning or a professionnal rider from the Wallonie-Bruxelles who wasn't allowed to line up. Sorry for them !

But the sport quickly came into the spotlight again after the start with a few attacks as of the first kilometres. The peloton stayed together for the first two laps, but in the third of 13 laps, a very interesting group got away. As usually, strongman Ralph Diseviscourt was in the good move, together with French rider Antoine Guyot from Hettange-Grande, the Dutch Pieter Scheerens and Thomas Hartog of Team Amsterdam as well as, of course, representing Differdange, German Sascha Weber, Kevin Kohlvelter from Luxembourg and a new rider in the team, Tora Guardiola from Spain. Their team-mate Christian Helmig also tried to bridge up to the leading group, but the gap opened quickly, 30 seconds already after one lap, and Luxemburg's cyclo-cross national champion fell back into a first chasing group.

Because in the strong crosswinds, the peloton had splitted up into several groups and, after five laps, they were only 15 left chasing the 6 leaders, among them Helmig and the former winner of the Grand-prix OST-Manufaktur, Hakan Nilsson, two riders from Kayl, Wurth and Wolter, from Tétange, Bintz and Herman, from Trier, Zingen and Becker, as well as four Dutchmen from TWC Maaslandster who had to do most of the work. Behind them, the riders followed in little groups and most of them were not able to reach the finish line due to the fast speed and a course made extremely difficult by the strong wind.

Whereas the sun showed up in the afternoon, the leading group worked well together and their speed was fast, increasing the gaps in the following kilometres: with four laps to go and the riders entering the deciding part of the race, the chasers were more than two minutes behind the leading group. Differdange didn't want to wait any longer for the decision and they showed themself very offensive now. Sascha Weber placed an acceleration in the crosswinds during lap nine, Thomas Hartog was not able to follow and a small gap opened. Kohlvelter and Guardiola waited for a moment and then bridged up one by one to their team-mate, leaving Diseviscourt behind with Guyot, Scheerens and Hartog. They were four against three, but the riders from Differdange were stronger and the four chasers quickly lost some more ground.

In the last lap, the three leading riders did not fight for the win, leaving it to the youngest among them, Kevin Kohlwelter, who was the first of the three to cross the finish line and thus wrote his name into the prestigious past-winners-list of the Gran-pris OST Manufaktur, ahead of Sascha Weber and Tora Guardiola. But behind the three, the battle was on for fourth position: Pieter Scheerens won the sprint with Diseviscourt being only an inch faster than Guyot for fifth. In the peloton, Christian Helmig had attacked once more on the last lap and he got away with Philipp Herman and Benn Wurth the three of them taking positions seven to nine in this order at the finish line.

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