Glorious return to cyclocross for Van Empel
Fem van Empel has marked her return to the field with a victory. The 21-year-old...
Olav Kooij has come close to taking the day's victory in the fourth stage of the Renewi Tour. The young sprinter of Team Jumbo-Visma only had to admit his superiority to Sam Welsford in a bunch sprint. Kooij reached a high top speed in the sprint but had to start his sprint from too far back.
After a four-person break was caught relatively early on, the Team Jumbo-Visma riders established themselves at the front of the peloton. The final phase was full of hectic situations, and crashes appeared inevitable. Partly due to the excitement, Kooij was isolated in the last kilometre, but he sprinted to second place in the streets of Peer.
"It's a disappointment”, Kooij said. "After catching the early breakaway, we were in a good position with the team for a long time. Lennard Hofstede and Jos van Emden made sure of that. In the final phase, we lost each other's bikes in the frenzy. I had to make several efforts to get back into a good position. Ultimately, I had a good sprint but just missed out on victory. Second place is not bad, but I would have preferred to win. The legs are good this week. That gives me a lot of confidence. Maybe there will be another chance tomorrow, but we will see with the team what the plan will be then.”
"The legs are good this week"
Sports director Maarten Wynants saw a team fighting for every metre. "We knew it would be a hectic final. The narrow streets created the necessary hectic conditions. We were actually in a good position all day. It is a pity that we missed Edoardo Affini in the final after he lost his position because he was behind a crash. This meant that Olav had to give his all in the final phase. He had to start his sprint from the back, which probably cost him the win. We were close to success again. The great thing about cycling is that there is always another chance. That chance will come tomorrow.”