2015 Slag om Norg, August 9

The “Battle for Norg” is back. Norg is a little town in the Drenthe province, Northern Netherlands. The “Slag om Norg” is a 164km long national race with ~50km on dirt roads, making it some sort of a Dutch version of the Tro Bro Leon.

The first edition was held in 2012 and was won by Mike Teunissen. As a matter of fact that edition of the race was dominated by cyclocrossers as Niels Wubben tweeted:
"Slag om Norg Super mooi dat #stradebianchii #stofhappen. Top 5 alleen maar crossers waarvan 1-2-4-5 #rabogiantoffroad ikzelf 5." [Slag om Norg, super nice this #strade bianchii #dustbiting. Top5 only crossers among whom 1-2-4-5 #rabogiantoffroad myself 5]
1 Mike Teunissen Rabobank Rabobank - Giant Offroad Team 02:47:47
2 Emiel Dolfsma Rabobank - Giant Offroad Team 00:01
3 Tijmen Eising Sunweb - Revor 01:51
4 Gert-Jan Bosman Rabobank-Giant Offroad Team zt.
5 Niels Wubben Rabobank-Giant Offroad Team 01:53

Highlights of the 1st edition in Dutch
The organizer seemed to be ambitious in making it an international race but 3 years later it’s still not the case.
In 2013, Rabo Giant doubled up with a win for Gert-Jan Bosman who outsprinted cross colleague Tijmen Eising, taking his revenge for his missed sprint for 3rd place the year before. Both riders are from Emmen, in the same province. Eising was racing in a black jersey as he had just been sacked by Sunweb …

1 BOSMAN Gert-Jan Rabobank Development Team
2 EISING Tijmen WSV Emmen
3 BEKKENK Ramses WV Noord-Holland [a former mountainbiker]
4 BOVENHUIS Jasper Rabobank Development Team
5 ARIESEN Johim Cycling team Jo Piels
6 BOUWMAN Koen Cycling team Jo Piels
7 POUTSMA Stefan Cycling team Jo Piels
9 CHAIGNEAU Robin Koga Cycling Team
10 ATZORI Umberto Koga Cycling Team
11 TE STROET Rens Cycling team Jo Piels
12 STROETINGA Wim Koga Cycling Team
13 VAN AERT Jan Royal Antwerp Bicycle Club
14 HUENDERS Mitchell Ruiter Dakkapellen Wielerteam
15 REINDERS Elmar Metec Continental Cycling Team

Highlights in Dutch. Riders give very interesting info about their tube choices.

Gert-Jan Bosman describing his win (in Dutch)

More picture from 2013 here

2014 was the first win for a non-crosser, namely Ronan Van Zandbeek but he’s not gonna defend his title since he’s in Portugal climbing cobbled hills at 40kmh !

Ronan says it's a great race and wishes it were bigger, with more riders and teams.

Netherlands VAN ZANDBEEK Ronan Cyclingteam De Rijke
Netherlands VERMELTFOORT Coen Cyclingteam De Rijke >>> was great to see him back
Netherlands BRUSSELMAN Twan Cyclingteam Jo Piels
4 Netherlands VAN DER DUIN Patrick Baby Dump Cyclingteam
5 Netherlands OTTEMA Rick Veranclassic - Doltcini
6 Netherlands SYBRANDY Wouter
7 Netherlands TE STROET Rens Cyclingteam Jo Piels
8 Netherlands ARIESEN Tim Cyclingteam Jo Piels
9 Netherlands BUGTER Luuc Croford Cycling Team
10 Netherlands BOSMAN Gert-Jan Parkhotel Valkenburg CT
11 Netherlands BEKKENK Ramses NWV Groningen
12 Netherlands ROOD Bram vereniging MTB Noordwest
13 Netherlands DE KLEIJN Arvid Croford Cycling Team
14 Netherlands DIELISSEN Bart Baby Dump Cyclingteam
15 Belgium VAN AERT Jan WV de Jonge Renner
16 Netherlands HORRING Lars Parkhotel Valkenburg CT
17 Netherlands VREUGDENHIL Stefan Westland Wil Vooruit
18 Netherlands BOVENHUIS Jasper Koga Cycling Team
19 Netherlands BUGTER Jasper Croford Cycling Team
20 Netherlands HARMSEN Bart Croford Cycling Team

This year the race could have had a nice surprise as the initiator of it – Dirk Heuvelman – invited Magnificent Marianne Vos to race it … with the men ! Unfortunately, though magnificent she is, Magnificent Marianne Vos is not immune to injuries and it seems that her season is now over. It could have been Magnificent Marianne Vos’ first race among the men, reminiscence of the great Alfonsina Strada. Shame!

Provisional Start List (if they’re confirmed I’m gonna root for the two “Emmenaars”: Gert-Jan Bosman & Tijmen Eising :))

Brullnux said:
Any stream?
I indeed forgot the most important. For the first time in the race's history, this edition will be covered live by RTV Drente and streamed !..: here (start at 2.30pm CET). :)

A small promo clip

Let me give additional comments. The Slag om Norg was 109km in 2013 when Gert-Jan Bosman won, including 36k on non-asphalt. It's 164km since last year. That might be the reason why crossers can no longer win it. But the race is constantly growing. Even in terms of field, Bosman told us that there were a lot more riders who were enthusiastic about racing it in 2013 than there were in 2012 (110 riders in 2013). Heuvelman applied for a spot in the Europe Tour for next year, though well I've heard about that since the start of the race and it still doesn't look like it.

"Of all the riders who started only 19 finished. That says a lot about how nice but such a hard race it was." said Bosman about the race he won in 2013. ;)
"Stones, dust, holes, clay were all part of it and accounted for some unique pictures."
Oct 23, 2011
I only just turned in for the end, so I didn't see much, but it looked like it was a pretty good race! The winner is Johim Ariesen. He's won pretty much this year the .2 level before, he's having a good year. :)
Gutted for Gert-Jan. :( With one lap to go he was hot favourite to win in a group of three with Koen Bouwman and Jasper Hamelinck but they were caught and he still managed to get 2nd. The Jo Piels were with the 5 of them but on such race, at that level, team control is not as obvious as on the elite races.

Gert-Jan really loves that race and has a passion for his sport. He would always write down some nice long articles about his races on his off website I'm waiting for the one about this race. Been a fan of his since 2012. He really seems to have a lot of respect for the fans. :)

There was a nice pre-race interview of his early in the stream. He explained to us that bike handling is essential on such races and that his cyclocross experience was a real asset. He also said that Van Zandbeek also did some cyclocross in the youth categories and that trained his technique.


Eheh Wim Stroetinga 19th; the Milram years are long gone. And Thijs Zonneveld, one minute down with one lap to go [edit: well it's impossible, he's classified in the lead group !!, I must have missed something]

Usually TV Drente post a highlight clip three days after the race. Now that it's been streamed perhaps it's different. But I'll report it here when I see it, you can trust me. :p