Luk Verlaenen, team leader of the Belgian delegation at the european CHAMPIONSHIPS cross-country from Sunday in the Slovak Samorin, saw spikes in positive and negative direction. Still dominated for him the positive feeling.
“The evening after a championship is always with mixed feelings about what happened, but I think that today the positive still dominates,” said Verlaenen. Soufiane Bouchikhi was the best Belgian man on the fifth place, Imana Truyers was in the women only 44th. The promises men earned Belgium a silver medal in the nation leaderboards.
“The results were, especially with the men, promising direction of future. When women’s expectations were not too high-strung, and then they have even less to show than they had expected. It is waiting for the return of Louise Carton, which is the only light in the darkness.” The selectiepolitiek in the women even more severe to loss of vision to avoid? “In principle, we continue to be in each category at least one athlete to take it, but there has to be a minimum level.”
About the male Belgian results could Verlaenen not be otherwise than excited. “That our beloftenploeg was strong, we knew. But that all four of them top fourteen, is above expectations. The same for the juniors, that team close to the podium finish.” And then there was Bouchikhi, who by Verlaenen coached. “My assessment of Soufiane was in advance of between five and ten, so with that fifth place, I’m quite satisfied.”
Bouchikhi was stricter about its performance. “He thinks there’s something else about me. There are a few Belgians that podiumambities dare to speak. If you are satisfied with a fifth place, you’re not going more ahead, but sometimes you also like to be able to enjoy a performance. For him that is difficult as he is so close to the stage is knocked out.”