This winter, WielerFlits is launching a new section: Friday, the 13th. Every Friday at 1.13pm you can read an interview with a crossover or loop racer who finished 13th the previous weekend. This varies from young girls to elite guys, from C2 Cross to World Cup. What’s the story? This week the thirteenth issue of Radquer Mettmenstetten: Ferre Geeraerts.
“When people are asked if they can name a number of riders, you hear the names of Eli Iserbet, Michael Fanthornhout, Lawrence Swick and others. I dream that in the future my name will be on that list and that people will think of me when asking this question,” Gerets told us at the end of the post Being at the top of the Belgian in this field and making a career in this way sounds great to me.” There is no shortage of ambition.
Overnight to Switzerland
“I was actually expecting more from my trip to Switzerland,” Geeraerts explains of his 13th place finish at the Radquer Mettmenstetten. “The start didn’t go well. I was on the wrong side of the road and was stopped. As a result, I only dived into the field at 19, and then I fell too. In the end I managed to get past a lot of riders, but driving towards the top 10 didn’t go well. It’s an option. I don’t have legs for that anymore.”
The victory at Mitmenstätten went to Kevin Kohn, who had also won at Illinois a week earlier. “The beginning cyclists are actually better than most people think. For example, Kuhn and Timon Rüegg (third place, editor) are really strong riders. I already knew I had to have a good day riding the centers. Top 10, but that was my goal. I’m not happy with my race, but on the other hand, I’m back in the top 20 in the UCI cross race.”
Such a trip to Switzerland is not self-evident. In total, Geeraerts had to sit in the car for seven hours, last weekend that had to happen at night. “I got up at 3:30 to leave for the cross. I was able to sleep well in the car, but we didn’t get to Mittmannstätten until 10:30. After some riding on the reels and eating, I soon had to explore and then race the race as well.”
1 UCI point makes a world of difference
Geerts and his entourage have traveled abroad several times this season. Twice in Germany, once in Holland and twice in Switzerland. “It all has to do with UCI points. I’m going out to do C2 races and collect UCI points there. In such a C2 intersection you have to ride in the top 10 to score those points. In Elnao, I finished 11th, I was pretty close there. So I am I’m sure it exists.”
It might sound special, traveling many miles every weekend to ride in the top ten somewhere abroad, but there’s a reason behind it. “I want to be able to show myself from November in crosses that we can ride separately like the U23. A good starting position is very important there. Even if I score only one UCI point, I immediately move up one or two rows at the start. This makes The world is different.” 19-year-old Vlames Brabanter has to put up with a lot of international riders in the U23 class at the start. “They can all ride in the World Cup Finals, where you can always score UCI points. In other words, as a Belgian, it’s really hard to fight that.”
Tips and tricks from Nils Albert
“In October, I will basically continue racing outside, hoping to ride in the top ten someday. Once in the top ten is good, I don’t need more than one point.” Geeraerts is supported in this point quest by his team Young Cycling Talent Demer and Dijle. In addition to this team, the young rider also gets some advice from the two-time cycling world champion here and there. Geeraerts comes from Baal and is a regular customer at the Niels Albert bike shop. “He always gives me good advice. Say what training I can do to improve my skills, and decide what kind of material I should use; Niels gives good advice.”
Geeraerts, who studies physical therapy at KU Leuven, also runs a road campaign in the summer. “I really love trying time. Last year I did it for the first time and it went well straight away. On my third try I finished 7th in the Junior Championships (by Vlad van Mecklen, Editor). I feel like I’m making huge progress every time I try “.
Time trial as second favorite specialty: “Next year top 3 in BK with promises”
This summer, Balenaar became the Inter-Promises Time Trial County Champion. “The jacket is always beautiful. However, I hope I can continue to grow and get closer to the top. The goal is to climb into the top three in the Belgian championships in the U23 class next year. Who knows, maybe I can go to the European Championship or the World Trial Championship as a precaution.” This would be very cool.”
Good luck this weekend, gentlemen and knights. Let the best win. And remember: thirteen is not always an unlucky number!