Road Worlds 2012: Lutsenko wins U23 men's road race

Coquard and Van Asbroeck in second and third place

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Alexey Lutsenko gave Kazakhstan its first ever Under 23 men’s world road race title with an audacious but perfectly timed sprint along the barriers.

Lutsenko let other riders start their sprints early and then came from behind to hit the line first at exactly the right time. France’s Bryan Coquard also came up late to take second, with Belgium’s Tom Van Asbroeck taking third. Hugo Houle (Canada) was fourth and Luke Pibernik (Slovenia) was fifth.

As expected, the final climb of the Cauberg, just 1.5km from the finish, sparked attacks but Lutsenko was able to get back to the front and fight for victory. 

“The race wasn’t easy. I had to suffer quite a bit and hang on during the last lap. I came back on from behind on the Cauberg, but then the sprint went well,” Lutsenko said in the post-race press conference. “The team worked hard to carry out the preordained tactics and they did some great work, especially on the last lap. So I have to thank my team.”

Lutsenko was overjoyed to win the world title. Bryan Coquard was not so happy to lose by less than a wheel.

“The dominant feeling is one of disappointment, even it’s nice to have silver at least,” he said.

“(Teammate) Warren Barguil was fantastic, he helped to pace me back on after the Cauberg all the way up to the last kilometre, but maybe I needed someone in those next 500 metres. I put in a long sprint and went 350 metres from the line. I went then because I found and opening and I was worried if I waited that I would get blocked in.”

“I thought I could win right to the last metre and even on crossing the line, I still wasn’t sure if I’d come first or second. Unfortunately it was second.”

A fast and furious race

As always with Under 23 world championship road races, the 177km race was fast and furious, with riders attacking and chasing each other all race.

Tomohiro Kinoshita of Japan, Jesper Dahlstrom of Sweden and Australia’s Michael Freiberg. formed the early move, opening an eight-minute gap. They were chased down and eight riders later joined them to create an 11-rider front group after five laps, before a general regrouping. Other attacks came but the peloton responded time and time again during the next three laps.

Italy’s Andrea Fedi was especially aggressive and he and four other riders managed to form a breakaway with a lap and a half to go. The five were: Andrea Fedi (Italy), Eduardo Sepulveda (Argentina), Anton Vorobyev (Russia) and Pawel Bernas (Poland).

As the bell rang at the finish line, signalling a lap to go, the quintet had a 15-second lead but it was not going to be enough. The peloton quickly closed the gap and then the Kazakhstan team also chased down a few solo attack on the back of the circuit.

The final climb of the Cauberg would be decisive and confirm if this year’s world championships are better suited to the attackers and climbers, or for the sprinters who opted to wait for the dash to the finish.

Austria’s Georg Preidler and Australia’s Jay McCarthy were the first to attack on the Cauberg and got a gap as the gradient eased. They were joined by a handful of other riders and for an instant they seemed to have a chance of going all the way to the finish. However some of the riders hesitated and refused to work. That slowed the attack, hit their determination and allowed the chasers to close the gap. 

Not all the riders were in the front group after the Cauberg left many struggling but 52 riders made it into the group and drove towards the finish.

The Belgium team lead out the sprint but they went a little too early into the headwind. It was going to be a hectic sprint. Van Asbroeck came through and probably thought he was going to win after hitting the front in the final 100 metres. But Lutsenko came past him on his left and then Coquard came past him on the right of the road to take first and second.

Lutsenko was overjoyed to win but will not wear the rainbow jersey in 2013. Instead he will join the pro ranks, as the heir to Alexandre Vinokourov’s crown of best Kazakhstan rider in cycling.

“You never know what can happen, many things are possible in a career,” he said when asked if he was ready to take over from Vinokourov.

“All season I’ve tried to stay in good condition to get wins and last month I signed a deal with Pro Team Astana. I hope I can continue to ride well as a professional next season and maybe even get a win along the way.”


1Alexey Lutsenko (Kazakhstan)4:20:15 
2Bryan Coquard (France)  
3Tom Van Asbroeck (Belgium)  
4Hugo Houle (Canada)  
5Luka Pibernik (Slovenia)  
6Jhoan Esteban Chaves Rubio (Colombia)  
7Hernando Bohorquez Sanchez (Colombia)  
8Kenneth Van Bilsen (Belgium)  
9Wouter Wippert (Netherlands)  
10Sam Bennett (Ireland)  
11Patrick Konrad (Austria)  
12Jan Polanc (Slovenia)  
13Soufiane Haddi (Morocco)  
14Moreno Hofland (Netherlands)  
15Haavard Blikra (Norway)  
16Sergei Pomoshnikov (Russian Federation)  
17Silvan Dillier (Switzerland)  
18Lawrence Kalil Warbasse (United States of America)  
19Jay McCarthy (Australia)  
20Michael Valgren Andersen (Denmark)  
21Sven Erik Bystrøm (Norway)  
22Sebastian Lander (Denmark)  
23Janis Dakteris (Latvia)  
24Tobias Ludvigsson (Sweden)  
25Michel Koch (Germany)  
26Sean Patrick Downey (Ireland)  
27Arman Kamyshev (Kazakhstan)  
28Ilia Koshevoy (Belarus)  
29Nikias Arndt (Germany)  
30Juan Ernesto Chamorro (Colombia)  
31Kristian Haugaard Jensen (Denmark)  
32Philip Lavery (Ireland)  
33Karel Hnik (Czech Republic)  
34Kirill Yatsevich (Russian Federation)  
35Natnael Brhane Teweldemedhin (Eritrea)  
36Rick Zabel (Germany)  
37Joshua Atkins (New Zealand)  
38Gijs Van Hoecke (Belgium)  
39Fabio Felline (Italy)  
40James Oram (New Zealand)  
41Vegard Breen (Norway)  
42Pit Schlechter (Luxembourg)  
43Nathan Davis Brown (United States of America)  
44Tim Mikelj (Slovenia)  
45Jan Hirt (Czech Republic)  
46Alex Kirsch (Luxembourg)  
47Carlos Verona Quintanilla (Spain)  
48Pawel Poljanski (Poland)  
49Gavin Mannion (United States of America)  
50Joshua Edmondson (Great Britain)  
51Jasper Stuyven (Belgium)  
52Warren Barguil (France)  
53Georg Preidler (Austria)0:00:09 
54Tom Skujins (Latvia)0:00:15 
55Tom Thill (Luxembourg)0:00:25 
56Oleksandr Prevar (Ukraine)  
57Eiichi Hirai (Japan)  
58Sergei Chernetski (Russian Federation)  
59Andrei Holubeu (Belarus)  
60Reda Aadel (Morocco)  
61Piotr Gawronski (Poland)  
62Magnus Cort Nielsen (Denmark)  
63Marcel Aregger (Switzerland)  
64Daniil Fominykh (Kazakhstan)  
65Lukasz Wisniowski (Poland)  
66Josef Cerny (Czech Republic)  
67Louis Meintjes (South Africa)  
68Andris Smirnovs (Latvia)  
69King Lok Cheung (Hong Kong, China)  
70Gennady Tatarinov (Russian Federation)  
71Sebastian Anaya (Venezuela)  
72Sebastian Henao Gomez (Colombia)  
73Pawel Bernas (Poland)  
74Davide Villella (Italy)  
75Daan Olivier (Netherlands)  
76Nikola Kozomara (Serbia)0:00:31 
77Antoine Duchesne (Canada)  
78Anasse Ait El Abdia (Morocco)  
79Adam Phelan (Australia)  
80Lukas Postlberger (Austria)  
81Anton Vorobyev (Russian Federation)  
82Maxime Daniel (France)  
83Vladislav Gorbunov (Kazakhstan)  
84Emanuel Buchmann (Germany)  
85Tom Dumoulin (Netherlands)  
86Jan Sokol (Austria)  
87Tsgabu Gebremaryam Grmay (Ethiopia)  
88Jakub Filip (Czech Republic)  
89Eduardo Sepulveda (Argentina)  
90Danny Van Poppel (Netherlands)  
91Joseph Lloyd Dombrowski (United States of America)  
92Nikita Umerbekov (Kazakhstan)  
93Damien Howson (Australia)  
94Klemen Stimulak (Slovenia)  
95Mark Dzamastagic (Slovenia)  
96Enrico Barbin (Italy)  
97Scott Thwaites (Great Britain)  
98Jasha Sütterlin (Germany)0:01:14 
99Anatoliy Sosnitskiy (Ukraine)0:01:35 
100Théo Vimpere (France)0:01:43 
101Angelo Tulik (France)  
102Bob Jungels (Luxembourg)0:02:24 
103Andrea Fedi (Italy)0:02:48 
104Francesco Manuel Bongiorno (Italy)  
105Thomas Scully (New Zealand)0:03:18 
106Mattia Cattaneo (Italy)  
107Jhonatha Salinas (Venezuela)  
108Simon Yates (Great Britain)0:03:34 
109Salaheddine Mraouni (Morocco)0:04:08 
110Asbjørn Kragh Andersen (Denmark)0:06:29 
111Maxat Ayazbayev (Kazakhstan)0:07:16 
112Kim Magnusson (Sweden)  
113Ali Riza Tanriverdi (Turkey)0:09:38 
114Dieter Bouvry (Belgium)0:10:09 
115Nikita Zharoven (Belarus)0:10:18 
116August Jensen (Norway)0:13:00 
HDAdel Barbari (Algeria)  
HDOlivier Le Gac (France)  
HDPanagiotis Chatzakis (Greece)  
HDTomohiro Kinoshita (Japan)  
HDTakero Terasaki (Japan)  
HDMieszko Bulik (Poland)  
HDMats Andersson (Sweden)  
HDFernando Briceño (Venezuela)  
DNFGabriel Chavanne (Switzerland)  
DNFZico Waeytens (Belgium)  
DNFJack Wilson (Ireland)  
DNFYonder Godoy (Venezuela)  
DNFMuhammad Zulhilmie Afif Ahmad Zamri (Malaysia)  
DNFIan Boswell (United States of America)  
DNFNick Aitken (Australia)  
DNFJan Tratnik (Slovenia)  
DNFRohan Dennis (Australia)  
DNFMichael Freiberg (Australia)  
DNFManuel Andres Sanchez Cuevas (Dominican Republic)  
DNFAndreas Hofer (Austria)  
DNFJorge Abreu (Venezuela)  
DNFSiarhei Safonau (Belarus)  
DNFHillard Cijntje (Netherlands Antilles)  
DNFFaycal Hamza (Algeria)  
DNFOmar Muhammad Faiz Izzuddin (Malaysia)  
DNFNik Mohd Azwan Zulkifle (Malaysia)  
DNFKi Ho Choi (Hong Kong, China)  
DNFHiroshi Tsubaki (Japan)  
DNFQuinten Winkel (Netherlands Antilles)  
DNFDavid Boily (Canada)  
DNFFilip Eidsheim (Norway)  
DNFJonas Ahlstrand (Sweden)  
DNFAndzs Flaksis (Latvia)  
DNFUlises Alfredo Castillo Soto (Mexico)  
DNFSofian Nabil Mohammed Bakri (Malaysia)  
DNFHamidun Hamdan (Malaysia)  
DNFJesper Dahlström (Sweden)  
DNFOleksandr Golovash (Ukraine)  
DNFCarlos Eduardo Quisphe-Quisphe (Ecuador)  
DNFArmands Becis (Latvia)  
DNFBryan Van Rutten (Netherlands Antilles)  
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