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Laura Smulders Wins EC final RoundJuly 12, 2011
The Team MeyBo/Bensink BMX Gates returns home with a very good feeling after the European Final Rounds in Haaksbergen, The Netherlands. On Sunday Laura Smulders took the victory at the junior women category and she became second in the final ranking. Her younger sister Merel got the silver medal at the girls 13; in the same category Karo Vertessen became fourth. Also Niels Bensink took the fourth place at the boys 15. In the elite men category Rihards Veide could reach the final, what gives him confidence for the upcoming World Championships.
A good organization, a great track en a lot of people. The conditions in Haaksbergen were perfect to show nice BMX and the riders of Team MeyBo/ensink BMX Gates took that opportunity with both hands.On Saturday, things didn’t go well. In the final Laura Smulders got stuck by Elis Ligtlee en Nadja Pries just before the first turn. So she had to stop and became 8th. On Sunday she showed that she is in fact the best in her category. She was on the second spot on the second straight where she jumped the double, had more speed in the second bend and passed on the inside Elis Ligtlee. So she won the last final of this European season.
In the elite men category Toon Jacobs could qualify for the quarters but was eliminated with a 5th place. At that moment he was the last teamrider in the race. On Sunday we saw a very different team. Rihards Veide passed easily his moto’s, won his 8th and quarter final and became second in his semi, just behind Joris Daudet. In the final he was in a good position when he got stuck just before the pro section so he couldn’t jump and became 8th. Arturs Matisons and Kristers Taims had to leave the arena after the 1/8th finales, Matisons after he had touched the gate.
Bad luck for Toon Jacobs. In his second moto on Sunday he passed the triple in the second straight on his back wheel, while his opponent jumped. That man landed with his back wheel on Toon’s handlebar, so both riders crashed. Toon must leave the race with a wrist injury.
In the boys 15 category Mike Klerkx and Niels Bensink passed the moto’s well. In the quarter final they became two and four. Niels had some luck: he crashed with other riders but was back on his bike fast so he could reach the finish in 4th position. Mike was eliminated in the semi, Niels got 4th. In the final Niels got lane 8 and could run through the 4th position, just behind super favorite Chris Christensen.
“Saterday was less, but Sunday was just good”, teammanager Berty Klerkx looks back. “I’m happy with Veide’s final en the victory of Laura. It’s a pitty Matisons was touching the gate and I saw good starts from Taims. Merel and Karo were no match for Axelle Etienne who is physically stronger. If we can improve Karo’s start, she makes a chance to get the podium at the Worlds. I’m looking forward with good confidence tot the World Championships when I see the progression of the riders this last weeks. Laura is determined to take the title as all the others want to ride the final. So that’s promising!”