Snot-cold Thibau Nys entertained, fell twice, and enjoyed in Overijse: "I even enjoyed myself a bit too much" Cycling

Snot-cold Thibau Nys entertained, fell twice, and enjoyed in Overijse: "I even enjoyed myself a bit too much"

Snot-cold Thibau Nys entertained, fell twice, and enjoyed in Overijse: "I even enjoyed myself a bit too much"

Thibau Nys was the odds-on favorite to win the Druivencross in Overijse, the first of eight heats in the Superprestige series. However, the man in top form had a challenging start to the race due to an early fall. Despite this setback, he managed to make an impressive comeback and get back to the front of the race. Unfortunately, another fall in the closing stages of the race cost him the victory.

Typically, only the top three riders in a cyclocross race are expected to enter the mixed zone afterward, where they answer questions from the press. Nys ultimately finished the grueling race in fourth place, so no one in the cycling newsroom, including anticipated his appearance. It was a surprise to see the somewhat battered Nys, nursing a knee injury, appear in the press zone after all. He started with a brief interview with the event organizers, followed by a barrage of questions from other media outlets.

"Gambled and lost," concludes animator Nys

"I had already considered the race a personal victory when I joined the leading group. I'm very satisfied with that, especially because I didn't expect to perform well today. I felt quite under the weather during the reconnaissance, with a stuffy nose," said the cold Nys immediately after the cyclocross race won by Eli Iserbyt, not far from Brussels. "In the penultimate lap, I had a difficult moment briefly, but I knew I had a chance to win if I could exit that descent by the water in the lead. I actually wanted to make my move a turn earlier, but Eli closed the door there. So I had to go full throttle for the descent. Each lap, I took the perfect line and pushed as hard as I could, but it was a risk."

Snot-cold Thibau Nys entertained, fell twice, and enjoyed in Overijse: "I even enjoyed myself a bit too much"
Nys was on the front row of the grid in Overijse

That crucial mistake, along with his error in the second lap, is something Nys discussed in more detail in front of this website and other media outlets. "I mainly had fun. It was an enjoyable race. I thought it was great that, after my fall in the opening stage, I was still able to catch up to the front. Everything else that followed was a bonus. In the end, it was unfortunate that I lost the race. I believe I had all the cards to win. Essentially, it was a matter of waiting for the right moment. I did find that right moment, but perhaps a bit too late. However, that's the risk I took. I entered that descent a bit too hastily. Besides, I was wearing tinted glasses, and in the dark forest, my visibility was limited. So, I took a gamble and, unfortunately, lost," is his overall assessment.

Nys's remarkable comeback, which saw him rapidly climb from 25th place to the front of the race, was a sight to behold and further confirmation of his excellent form. He explained, "It wasn't very challenging to regain my focus after the initial fall. The course of this cross was well-suited for me to ride at my own pace and make my way back. I did feel that I lacked a bit of freshness towards the end. However, with one well-timed attack or move, I could have definitely won the race."

According to Nys, sprinting against Iserbyt was not an option

A good-natured and always amiable Nys is eager to emphasize how much he relished the "Mother of all Crosses." He jokes, "My enthusiasm got the better of me. I simply enjoyed this race a bit too much. Moreover, the chase effort took a toll on my strength and prevented me from making a strong final push. Consequently, I had to limit myself to staying with the lead. However, I knew that if I could give it my all towards the end, I had a great chance to win the race. So it's unfortunate that I made a mistake like that."

Nys acknowledges that he surrendered his potential victory due to a risky maneuver on a slippery and notably dark section – a "costly fall," as he describes it. Given this, many fans at the event questioned why Nys didn't simply opt for a sprint finish, considering his typical prowess in such scenarios. He firmly believes that a sprint wasn't an option at all, stating, "I just knew that if you entered the paved final stretch in the lead, you would secure the win. The thick mud on our tires made it incredibly difficult to pass anyone at that point. I felt that I could win without having to sprint. It's disappointing, particularly because, contrary to my own expectations, I had a good day. Hopefully, in the upcoming races, I can once again compete for victories and delight my fans." This sentiment surely stirred the hearts of Nys's devoted supporters.

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