Heemeryck and Bleymehl win in Geraardsbergen

Daniela Bleymehl powered away on the bike to take her first Challenge Geraardsbergen title, while Pieter Heemeryck led virtually from start to finish to successfully defend his title.

| June 16, 2019 | NEWS

Daniela Bleymehl rode her way to the front and never looked back at Challenge Geraardsbergen.

Daniela Bleymehl rode her way to the front and never looked back at Challenge Geraardsbergen.

Photo >Jose Luis Hourcade

Bleymehl sets new course record

Great Britain's Fanella Langridge was first out of the water with Katrien Verstuyft (BEL) Germans Daniela Bleymehl and Carolin Lehrieder chasing about 90 seconds later. Bleymehl moved to the front of the race by the halfway point of the challenging bike course, hitting T2 with a lead of 90 seconds on Belgian Sara Van de Vel, with Langridge another minute back.

Bleymehl stayed strong on the run, taking the win in 4:18:32, setting a new course record in the process. Langridge managed to pass Van de Vel during the run to take second in 4:20:48, leaving Van de Vel to round out the podium in 4:23:47.

Heemeryck wins at home

Pieter Heemeryck wins Challenge Geraardsbergen.

Pieter Heemeryck wins Challenge Geraardsbergen.

Photo >Jose Luis Hourcade

Fresh off his brilliant runner-up finish at the Championship in Samorin, Slovakia, Belgium's own Pieter Heemeryck returned to his Challenge-Family winning ways (he'd taken four straight Challenge Family races leading up to the Championship) with an almost-wire-to-wire win in Geraardsbergen. 

Heemeryck led out of the water, but Holland's Marco Akerschoek managed to beat him out of T1. Heemeryck was in front again within a kilometer, though, and never looked back, steadily increasing his lead through the 90 km ride. By the end of the ride Heemeryck was three-minutes up on Great Britain's Joe Skipper, who was 20 second up on Nicolas Dougall.

Out on the run Heemeryck continued to power clear of the rest of the field. Skipper would pull out of the race as Austria's Thomas Steger moved into second with Great Britain's David Bishop moving into third. Heemeryck cruised to the win in 3:52:50, with Steger nailing second in3:54:38 and Bishop rounding out the podium in 3:58:49.