Tolhoek tenth in opening stage Ruta del Sol
Antwan Tolhoek has finished tenth in the first stage of the Ruta del Sol. The 15...
Team Jumbo-Visma had not been able to get an appealing result in the Flemish semi-classic Oxyclean Classic Brugge-De Panne. The yellow-black formation kept sprinter David Dekker well in front during the race, but in the hectic bunch sprint the neo pro was unable to make a move.
About thirty kilometres after the start in Bruges six riders chose the early attack. The leading group was caught by the charging peloton on the second passage of De Moeren. De Moeren, the open plain around Veurne where the wind has a free role, caused the necessary stress in the peloton every passage. Team Jumbo-Visma made its presence felt at the front several times, but together with the other teams could not break the peloton. Apart from a few pinpricks, nobody really got away in the final kilometres. The expected bunch sprint in De Panne was won by the Irishman Sam Bennett.
"This race today was a real sprinters race; last year it was a real battlefield."
Sports director Jan Boven had seen a hectic race: “We knew it could turn into echelons in De Moeren. We tried the first passage and were attentive, but in the following passages there was not enough wind to really pull it to the side. Then we tried to put David in position for the sprint. That didn’t quite work out as we had hoped. We were aiming for a better result, but some guys just got back from altitude training and maybe missed some race hardness today.”
Boven is already looking forward to the upcoming Flemish classics. “I think we are fine. With Wout, we get our leader there, of course. This race today was a real sprinters race; last year it was a real battlefield. The upcoming races will be very different again.”