Last year Caspar and Stok qualified for the UCI World Cycling Tour Final, but this year the Calendar has much more interesting rides, but getting into this final will be really touch. The UWCT Calender 2012 offers 13 qualifier events of which nine in Europe. New interesting ones are held in Sankt Polten (Austria),Trento (italy), St Tropez (France) and Viella (Spain). The last one offers the Col du Mente, the Col du Aras, the Port de Bales, the Portillion. Yes almost like the closing stage of the Pyreneantour 2011. Riding this course as a cyclo or gran fondo seems a huge challenge.
With so many qualifiers it will be much harder to qualify for the final, which this year will be in South-Africa. But clearly this UCI amateur competition is getting serious and it offering some really interesting rides. I am looking forward to put some of this rides on our agenda.
Profil UWCT qualifier Austria
Vielha Val d'Aran (Spain)
Stok in the decent of the Wanne.
One moment you are an average cyclist, the next moment you are performing in a true UCI World Championship for Amateur racers. The UWCT final was the cherry on the cake for Stok for making an excellent comeback in 2011. Because of their outstanding performances in the Gran Fondo Eddy Mercks Caspar and Stok qualified for the UCI-final for Amateur racers in Stavelot, Belgium. Ofcourse they didn't let this opportunity pass by.
On a rainy summer morning Caspar Hermans started the final for 45+ masters and for 90 kilometers he kept in the front of the race. Unfortunately the cold of the rain, and probably not eating enough during the race hit him hard on the Wanne. Caspar had to give up his good position loosing 20 minutes in 20 kilometer.
Stok didn't take the event too seriously, cause he felt he didn't have a change. This lousy mentality put him after the start in the back of the peloton of 40+ masters. That is ofcourse the worst place to be, and after 7km he fell. Not being able to get back to the pack he started a time trial for 100 km noticing he had much better legs as expected, but being far behind the squat he also missed a turn with some other guys after the Haut-Levée and lost 20 minutes more. Full of adrenalin, blood on his arms and legs he finished as 68th of the world of Amateurs.
For Caspar and Stok the UWCT-Final was a superb experience. The race was profesional organised and the parcours was challenging and beautiful. Their participation in the Worlds-final striggered Bart Man's unsatisfiable ambition for next year.