De Plus claims first professional victory with overall win in BinckBank Tour

De Plus claims first professional victory with overall win in BinckBank Tour

Laurens De Plus has claimed the overall victory in the final stage of the BinckBank Tour. The Belgian leader of Team Jumbo-Visma attacked early and had a big enough lead at the finish to pass Tim Wellens in the overall standings. De Plus finished third in the stage.

For De Plus, it is his first individual victory after he turned professional in 2016. For Team Jumbo-Visma it is the 41st victory of 2019 and the fourth overall victory in a WorldTour stage race. Earlier this year, Primoz Roglic won the UAE Tour, Tirreno-Adriatico and the Tour de Romandie for Team Jumbo-Visma.

After a leading group of fifteen riders was reeled in in the final of the final stage of the Belgian-Dutch stage race, De Plus attacked just before the golden kilometre. He was then joined by Oliver Naesen and Greg Van Avermaet. The three worked well together and held their lead until the finish. De Plus could no longer sprint for the stage win, but his advantage over his closest competitors in the battle for the overall victory was big enough.

“This is hard to believe. It’s just incredible”, De Plus said. “I never thought it would actually happen. Tim was so strong in the Ardennes that I thought it was impossible to do it. Before the start of the stage I was aiming for a podium place. But I felt really good and with an eye on the time bonuses in the golden kilometre I decided to attack in order to secure my podium. To my surprise, I actually got away with Oliver and Greg after the Bosberg. Those guys are real cobblestone specialists, so for me it was a matter of trying to stay with them. I was close a couple of times, but I was so looking to finally take a win. I am really happy that it worked out: my first victory as a professional cyclist. I live near Geraardsbergen. The fact that I win here in front of my family, friends and fans is extra special. I dedicate this victory to my good friend Bjorg Lambrecht and to the team. The support and confidence I received this week was great.”

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