Procycling: Volta a Catalunya 6 The Big Split!

Incredible but true: Contador and Valverde attacked immediately and split the peloton on the first descent of the day. Chris Froome missed the move and is now losing 7'! 
In the front group there are about 50 riders, let's see who's in. 
But where is Contador going 40 km from the finish?! what an unpredictable race! Ok, he's going nowhere as the move is immediately neutralised
Meanwhile the gap is up to 12'! Snow beside the wet road, the front group is on La Mussara (1st cat.) the last climb of the day.
No attacks surprisingly. Dowm they fly, toward the line. Valverde is the new Mountain leader. 
The Froome's group summits La Mussara 21'30'' later.
14 km to go Cataldo and De Marchi attack. They have just a 10'' gap.
Aproaching the line, the peloton gets close. De Marchi launches the sprint while they are caught. Impey wins ahead of Valverde!


1 Daryl Impey (RSA) Orica-Scott 
2 Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team

1 Valverde
2 Contador
3 Soler


Procycling: Volta a Catalunya 5

Alejandro Valverde made a big selection in the last climb, then attacked and nobody could follow. 
End of the story.
Interesting to see how Froome managed it: he kept a very little gear pedaling at a high cadence, got a little dropped then gained terrain and finally capitalised.

Alejandro Valverde:
"It was a spectacular day for both myself and the team, I'm so glad I could finish this off. It was an amazing day, all thanks to my team-mates. We kept full focus in the dangerous part of the stage, exposed to the wind, and all over the stage I had different team-mates surrounding me. At the final climb, Rubén Fernández and Marc Soler did a sensational job for me. From the very foot of the climb I was feeling like I had good legs, and I asked them to go on full steam for as long as they could. At the final two kilometers, I sought for my distance and launched the move with a pace I could hold until the line.
It's a victory and a leader's jersey really special, because of everything that happened during the last few days. Things like those, outside the racing itself, are not ones that we like. In the end, we managed to get people excited and happy about our racing, and that's what counts. Soler? It's a really talented boy, you all could see it. He won the Tour de l'Avenir, excelled into the mountains prior, but seeing how strong he rode this week, I can tell this to you: he's got whatever he wants to win in his legs."

Chris Froome:
“Today, being the first big mountain top finish, was probably the first real big test so in that sense I’m really happy to be up there. Those are good indicators when I still have a long way to go until I’m at my best. Personally, it’s been an encouraging few days, especially given my track record here in Catalunya! It’s a race that I’ve usually found tough, being my first European race of the year and really just getting back into it. Having said that, we don’t want to be happy with second place as it’s not the reason we’re here. Valverde is looking really strong and I think beating him will take something special. But tomorrow’s stage has been quite understated – there’s hardly any flat in it and the weather might play a big part. After a day like today there will be some tired legs so we’ll stay on the front foot and look to take any opportunities."


1 Alejandro VALVERDE BELMONTE ESP MOV 37 4:14:52
2 Chris FROOME GBR SKY 32 +13
5 Adam YATES GBR ORS 25 +32
6 Daniel MARTIN IRL QST 31 +46
7 David GAUDU FRA FDJ 21 +58
8 Hugh CARTHY GBR CDT 23 +1:04
9 Jakob FUGLSANG DEN AST 32 +1:11
10 Steven KRUIJSWIJK NED TLJ 30 +1:11
11 Romain BARDET FRA ALM 27 +1:11
12 Michael WOODS CAN CDT 31 +1:17
1 Alejandro VALVERDE BELMONTE Spain MOV 37 17:44:27
2 Chris FROOME Great Britain SKY 32 +21
3 Alberto CONTADOR VELASCO Spain TFS 35 +47
4 Marc SOLER GIMENEZ Spain MOV 24 +1:00
5 Adam YATES Great Britain ORS 25 +1:15
6 Tejay VAN GARDEREN United States BMC 29 +1:18
7 Geraint THOMAS Great Britain SKY 31 +1:34
8 Samuel SANCHEZ GONZALEZ Spain BMC 39 +1:59
9 Daniel MARTIN Ireland QST 31 +2:13
10 Steven KRUIJSWIJK Netherlands TLJ 30 +2:40

Procycling: E3 Harelbeke

A nervous race since the start. Tony Gallopin crashed out. There is a break away including Gougeard (AG2R), De Vreese (Astana), Van Hoecke (LottoNL), Per (Bahrein), Masson (Veranclassic), Van der Hoorn (Roompot). 90 km to go their advantage is 4 '40 ".
Another crash brings down several riders including Docker and Teunissen.
60 km to go a small but qualified group formed in front and is chasing. It includes Van Avermaet, Gilbert, Naesen, Vanmarcke, Durbridge.
One more crash! this time Sagan is in the mix... It takes him a lot of time to get back on bike because he had to wait for the team car.
Kwaremont: Gilbert, Van Avermaet, Naesen, Vanmarcke, De Vreese, Durbridge and Pöstlberger are leading. 
Naesen, Gilbert and van Avermaet got a gap. 33 km to go they have 1'15''.
22 km to go Trentin got a mechanical.
Tiegemberg: Gilbert speeds up. van Avermaet follows, Naesen is dropped. But he manages to bounce back! 
In the flat, 6 km to go. Riders in the break are collaborating so their gap is steady.
Last km. They watch each other. Finally Naesen launches the sprint, from behind. Van Avermaet powerfully reacts and is first on the line. Gilbert on his wheel.
But Naesen did a very good race.

Greg Van Avermaet:
"This is a really nice win. I know how hard it is to win here. At the beginning of the year, I had only been on the podium once here in 2008. That says it enough, I think. Every year I come back with high expectations and every year it is hard to win this kind of race. I am happy that I have two wins in my pocket now but at the beginning of the season, I said that Tour of Flanders is my big goal. That still has to happen, but it is nice to start with two victories on home soil.
I was confident, but you are never sure. You have to believe in yourself to win a sprint. I knew that if everything went right, I could beat everyone in a sprint on a hard race but you have to be really focused and everything has to go perfectly. But Gilbert has a good sprint, so you are never 100% sure.
I think we were much better today than in Milan-San Remo. I also made a mistake there to not get into the right position at a crucial moment, but today they did well. They positioned me in the right place. Daniel Oss has to stand up; he is a good guy. I really believe in him, and he is one of the strongest riders in the peloton and with Stefan Küng and Jempy Drucker, I think we can be confident. We don't have the team like Quickstep-Floors, but we have strong guys who can help me, and I am really confident in them.
Next it's the Ronde. It always helps with your confidence going into a big race when you get the win, and the guys know that I am good and that I will always try. If you win, you see that the team gets stronger and more confident. It's good to start a race like Ronde van Vlaanderen with the confidence of the team. They know I am ready and when the leader is good, most of the time the team comes also."

Philippe Gilbert:
“We did a great race today and all the guys did a marvelous job, covering the moves of our rivals and keeping me in a good position. Over the top of the Taaienberg, we had a gap, and although I wasn’t sure that group will stick, I decided to give it a go, so from that moment on it was full gas all the way to the finish line in Harelbeke.
In the sprint, Naesen surprised me when he opened his sprint and I hesitated for a second. That, and the headwind, made it really hard to get back in the front. It’s a pity, because I was there and could have won, but that’s racing. I’m looking at the bright side of things, which is that my form is good and I’ve rediscovered those sensations that make me feel at ease on the cobbles. In these races, you have to work hard to get into the best position and to keep it. I really like this. I found again my fighting spirit and this makes me happy. I’m back!”


1 Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team 4:48:17
2 Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Quick-Step Floors
3 Oliver Naesen (Bel) AG2R La Mondiale
4 Luke Durbridge (Aus) Orica-Scott 0:00:40
5 Lukas Pöstlberger (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe 0:00:41
6 Michael Valgren Andersen (Den) Astana Pro Team 0:00:52
7 Sonny Colbrelli (Ita) Bahrain-Merida
8 Tom Boonen (Bel) Quick-Step Floors
9 Dylan Van Baarle (Ned) Cannondale-Drapac
10 Alberto Bettiol (Ita) Cannondale-Drapac
11 Fabio Felline (Ita) Trek-Segafredo
12 Jens Keukeleire (Bel) Orica-Scott
13 John Degenkolb (Ger) Trek-Segafredo
14 Tiesj Benoot (Bel) Lotto Soudal
15 Luke Rowe (GBr) Team Sky
16 Sebastian Langeveld (Ned) Cannondale-Drapac
17 Laurens De Vreese (Bel) Astana Pro Team
18 Ignatas Konovalovas (Ltu) FDJ
19 Niki Terpstra (Ned) Quick-Step Floors
20 Daniel Oss (Ita) BMC Racing Team
21 Tony Martin (Ger) Katusha-Alpecin
22 Matteo Trentin (Ita) Quick-Step Floors 0:00:57
23 Sep Vanmarcke (Bel) Cannondale-Drapac 0:01:53
24 Magnus Cort Nielsen (Den) Orica-Scott 0:02:12
25 Borut Bozic (Slo) Bahrain-Merida
26 Sacha Modolo (Ita) UAE Team Emirates
27 Alexander Kristoff (Nor) Katusha-Alpecin
28 Ramon Sinkeldam (Ned) Team Sunweb
29 Olivier Le Gac (Fra) FDJ
30 Scott Thwaites (GBr) Dimension Data
31 Jasper De Buyst (Bel) Lotto Soudal
32 Iljo Keisse (Bel) Quick-Step Floors
33 Luka Pibernik (Slo) Bahrain-Merida
34 Frederik Backaert (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert
35 Koen De Kort (Ned) Trek-Segafredo
36 Guillaume Van Keirsbulck (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert
37 Mathew Hayman (Aus) Orica-Scott
38 Taco Van Der Hoorn (Ned) Roompot - Nederlandse Loterij
39 Carlos Barbero (Spa) Movistar Team
40 Loïc Vliegen (Bel) BMC Racing Team
41 Jasha Sütterlin (Ger) Movistar Team
42 Bryan Coquard (Fra) Direct Energie
43 Gijs Van Hoecke (Bel) Team LottNl-Jumbo
44 Stijn Devolder (Bel) Veranda's Willems Crelan
45 Bram Tankink (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo
46 Jos Van Emden (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo
47 Jean-Pierre Drucker (Lux) BMC Racing Team
48 Jelle Wallays (Bel) Lotto Soudal
49 Huub Duijn (Ned) Veranda's Willems Crelan
50 Thomas Sprengers (Bel) Sport Vlaanderen - Baloise
51 Alexey Lutsenko (Kaz) Astana Pro Team
52 Kevyn Ista (Bel) WB Veranclassic Aqua Protect
53 Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Quick-Step Floors 0:02:16
54 Lukasz Wisniowski (Pol) Team Sky
55 Silvan Dillier (Swi) BMC Racing Team
56 Ian Stannard (GBr) Team Sky
57 Ivan Garcia (Spa) Bahrain-Merida
58 Christopher Juul Jensen (Den) Orica-Scott
59 Thomas Scully (NZl) Cannondale-Drapac
60 Antoine Duchesne (Can) Direct Energie
61 Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Direct Energie
62 Gianni Moscon (Ita) Team Sky 0:02:20
63 Vegard Stake Laengen (Nor) UAE Team Emirates
64 Marco Marcato (Ita) UAE Team Emirates 0:02:29
65 Tyler Farrar (USA) Dimension Data 0:02:43
66 Hugo Houle (Can) AG2R La Mondiale 0:06:15
67 Aleksei Tcatevich (Rus) Gazprom – Rusvelo
68 Dmitriy Gruzdev (Kaz) Astana Pro Team
69 Reto Hollenstein (Swi) Katusha-Alpecin
70 Nils Politt (Ger) Katusha-Alpecin
71 Stijn Vandenbergh (Bel) AG2R La Mondiale
72 Michael Morkov (Den) Katusha-Alpecin
73 Martin Elmiger (Swi) BMC Racing Team
74 Eliot Lietaer (Bel) Sport Vlaanderen - Baloise
75 Søren Kragh Andersen (Den) Team Sunweb
76 Tom Van Asbroeck (Bel) Cannondale-Drapac
77 Mickael Delage (Fra) FDJ
78 Alexis Gougeard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
79 Kristijan Koren (Slo) Cannondale-Drapac
80 Marcus Burghardt (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe
81 Bert De Backer (Bel) Team Sunweb 0:08:36
82 Elmar Reinders (Ned) Roompot - Nederlandse Loterij
83 Twan Castelijns (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo
84 Floris Gerts (Ned) BMC Racing Team
85 Matthieu Ladagnous (Fra) FDJ
86 Jorge Arcas Peña (Spa) Movistar Team
87 Kenneth Van Rooy (Bel) Sport Vlaanderen - Baloise
88 Moreno Hofland (Ned) Lotto Soudal
89 Romain Cardis (Fra) Direct Energie
90 Mads Pedersen (Den) Trek-Segafredo
91 Sjoerd Van Ginneken (Ned) Roompot - Nederlandse Loterij
92 Julien Vermote (Bel) Quick-Step Floors
93 Julien Duval (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
94 Nuno Bico (Por) Movistar Team
95 Manuel Quinziato (Ita) BMC Racing Team
96 Lars Boom (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo
97 Simone Consonni (Ita) UAE Team Emirates
98 Kris Boeckmans (Bel) Lotto Soudal 0:08:39
99 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) Dimension Data 0:10:45
100 Sven Erik Bystrøm (Nor) Katusha-Alpecin
101 Erik Baska (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe
102 Maciej Bodnar (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe
103 Sander Cordeel (Bel) Veranda's Willems Crelan
104 Alexander Porsev (Rus) Gazprom – Rusvelo
105 Igor Boev (Rus) Gazprom – Rusvelo
106 Julien Morice (Fra) Direct Energie
107 Nans Peters (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
108 Peter Sagan (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe
109 Alexandre Pichot (Fra) Direct Energie
110 Remy Mertz (Bel) Lotto Soudal
111 Pavel Brutt (Rus) Gazprom – Rusvelo
112 Aime De Gendt (Bel) Sport Vlaanderen - Baloise
DNF Juraj Sagan (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe
DNF Christian Knees (Ger) Team Sky
DNF Owain Doull (GBr) Team Sky
DNF Nico Denz (Ger) AG2R La Mondiale
DNF Salvatore Puccio (Ita) Team Sky
DNF Gediminas Bagdonas (Ltu) AG2R La Mondiale
DNF Matti Breschel (Den) Astana Pro Team
DNF Oscar Gatto (Ita) Astana Pro Team
DNF Andrey Grivko (Ukr) Astana Pro Team
DNF Christoph Pfingsten (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe
DNF Truls Korsaeth (Nor) Astana Pro Team
DNF Tony Gallopin (Fra) Lotto Soudal
DNF Niccolo Bonifazio (Ita) Bahrain-Merida
DNF Nikolas Maes (Bel) Lotto Soudal
DNF David Per (Slo) Bahrain-Merida
DNF Ion Insausti (Spa) Bahrain-Merida
DNF Aleksejs Saramotins (Lat) Bora-Hansgrohe
DNF Danny Van Poppel (Ned) Team Sky
DNF Jack Bauer (NZl) Quick-Step Floors
DNF Chun Kai Feng (Tpe) Bahrain-Merida
DNF Benjamin Declercq (Bel) Sport Vlaanderen - Baloise
DNF Pieter Vanspeybrouck (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert
DNF Elias Van Breussegem (Bel) Veranda's Willems Crelan
DNF Otto Vergaerde (Bel) Veranda's Willems Crelan
DNF Stef Van Zummeren (Bel) Veranda's Willems Crelan
DNF Gaetan Bille (Bel) Veranda's Willems Crelan
DNF Dries De Bondt (Bel) Veranda's Willems Crelan
DNF Alex Kirsch (Lux) WB Veranclassic Aqua Protect
DNF Dries Van Gestel (Bel) Sport Vlaanderen - Baloise
DNF Christophe Masson (Fra) WB Veranclassic Aqua Protect
DNF Piet Allegaert (Bel) Sport Vlaanderen - Baloise
DNF Andrea Guardini (Ita) UAE Team Emirates
DNF Federico Zurlo (Ita) UAE Team Emirates
DNF Oliviero Troia (Ita) UAE Team Emirates
DNF Marko Kump (Slo) UAE Team Emirates
DNF Bernhard Eisel (Aut) Dimension Data
DNF Preben Van Hecke (Bel) Sport Vlaanderen - Baloise
DNF Ivan Savitskiy (Rus) Gazprom – Rusvelo
DNF Pim Ligthart (Ned) Roompot - Nederlandse Loterij
DNF Coen Vermeltfoort (Ned) Roompot - Nederlandse Loterij
DNF Brian Van Goethem (Ned) Roompot - Nederlandse Loterij
DNF Berden De Vries (Ned) Roompot - Nederlandse Loterij
DNF Jesper Asselman (Ned) Roompot - Nederlandse Loterij
DNF Roman Maikin (Rus) Gazprom – Rusvelo
DNF Ludwig De Winter (Bel) WB Veranclassic Aqua Protect
DNF Andrei Solomennikov (Rus) Gazprom – Rusvelo
DNF Kevin Van Melsen (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert
DNF Adrien Petit (Fra) Direct Energie
DNF Ryan Anderson (Can) Direct Energie
DNF Jimmy Duquennoy (Bel) WB Veranclassic Aqua Protect
DNF Julien Stassen (Bel) WB Veranclassic Aqua Protect
DNF Ludovic Robeet (Bel) WB Veranclassic Aqua Protect
DNF Lawrence Naesen (Bel) WB Veranclassic Aqua Protect
DNF Nikolay Trusov (Rus) Gazprom – Rusvelo
DNF Antonio Pedrero (Spa) Movistar Team
DNF Jérôme Baugnies (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert
DNF Mark Renshaw (Aus) Dimension Data
DNF Youcef Reguigui (Alg) Dimension Data
DNF Nick Dougall (RSA) Dimension Data
DNF Luka Mezgec (Slo) Orica-Scott
DNF Roger Kluge (Ger) Orica-Scott
DNF Marco Haller (Aut) Katusha-Alpecin
DNF Dayer Quintana (Col) Movistar Team
DNF Jenthe Biermans (Bel) Katusha-Alpecin
DNF Héctor Carretero (Spa) Movistar Team
DNF Carlos Betancur (Col) Movistar Team
DNF Marc Sarreau (Fra) FDJ
DNF Lorenzo Manzin (Fra) FDJ
DNF Jacopo Guarnieri (Ita) FDJ
DNF Marc Fournier (Fra) FDJ
DNF Mitch Docker (Aus) Orica-Scott
DNF Albert Timmer (Ned) Team Sunweb
DNF Simone Antonini (Ita) Wanty - Groupe Gobert
DNF Yoann Offredo (Fra) Wanty - Groupe Gobert
DNF Wesley Kreder (Ned) Wanty - Groupe Gobert
DNF Marco Coledan (Ita) Trek-Segafredo
DNF Fumiyuki Beppu (Jpn) Trek-Segafredo
DNF Gregory Rast (Swi) Trek-Segafredo
DNF Jay Robert Thomson (RSA) Dimension Data
DNF Zico Waeytens (Bel) Team Sunweb
DNF Ryan Mullen (Irl) Cannondale-Drapac
DNF Mike Teunissen (Ned) Team Sunweb
DNF Tom Stamsnijder (Ned) Team Sunweb
DNF Roy Curvers (Ned) Team Sunweb
DNF Maarten Wynants (Bel) Team LottoNl-Jumbo
DNF Robert Wagner (Ger) Team LottoNl-Jumbo
DNF Thomas Leezer (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo
DNF Jasper Stuyven (Bel) Trek-Segafredo


Volta Catalunya: Mid Race Sum Up... and getting ready for Nepal

Photo published for Renners in Ronde van Catalonië ontwaken onder laagje sneeuw
I'm feeling better. Antibiotics work and motivation works even better: I'll leave to Nepal in few days! 
Things to do are many but I can't go out until tomorrow, so I concentrated on my philosophy, re-schedulated my lessons according, because due to this illness I have lost a lot of time.
It's interesting in a certain way, a kind of a challenge forcing me to give an overall account of a philosphical school or age instead of several authors in dettails, stressing trends, differences and similarities. It's an approach I like, but demanding for highschool students...
Fever and headache didn't allow me to watch the first stage of Volta a Catalunya. Of course I heard about the Movistar's pushing in the TTT... Today I'm watching. Stage 4 has been  reduced by 58km due to snow and cold weather. There was a larger early break but it has been quickly caught. A new front group formed, including Gonçalves, Keizer, Bono, Rubio and Osorio.  After 39 km they have a 1' 50'' gap.
Alt del Pubill (3rd cat): Osorio is first at the KOM, the gap is 2:40. Team Sky and Trek are very active in the peloton.
50 km to go a crash in the peloton brings down several riders. Ilur Zakarin looks bad, he sits on the edge of the road, breathing looks painful and he points to his chest. Eventually he gets back on bike and so far he's racing.
The pace is high in the chase and Osorio decides it's time to go solo.
Turo del Puig is a serious climb (6 km average 5%) and it comes relatively close to the finish as we are in the last 15 km. Indeed Astana attack with Cataldo and Fuglsang out the front. Cataldo is caught, Fuglsang still has few meters. Bardet attacks too from behind and Dan Martin follows. Contador closes the gap. 
Descent. The peloton exploded but nobody managed to go away. Marc Soler - in white jersey - and Alejandro Valverde are leading. They are taking risks. Gaudu and Froome joined and these four has got a gap. Still 7 km to go and they are in a flat.
5 km to go they are  all together again. It's going to be a sprint. And Nacer Bouhanni wins it by a powerful progression. Chapeau!

Nacer Bouhanni:
"I'm super happy with what the Cofidis team has done for me today and by helping me to win this race. It was my fault on stage 1, I went too far out. I wasn't happy to lose by two centimetres and so I really wanted to win today. I did what I needed to do."

Tejay van Garderen:
"I think today went really well for us. We were about to start in a snow storm, but they made a good call to move us down the valley. It shortened the stage obviously, but it also kept everyone safe and dry. It was a relatively easier day today before a hectic final climb and descent to the finish, but I think we managed it well.
I feel really good going into tomorrow's stage. I'm confident in the team and myself. It will be a hard climb, and certainly, anything can happen. Wearing the leader's jersey always adds motivation. It gives you an extra gear or 20 extra watts so, hopefully, I can get to the base of the climb in a good position and then from there I just need to give it my best. That's all I can ask for."

1 Davide Cimolai (Ita) FDJ 4:28:21
2 Nacer Bouhanni (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
3 Kristian Sbaragli (Ita) Dimension Data
4 Dion Smith (NZl) Wanty - Groupe Gobert
5 André Greipel (Ger) Lotto Soudal
6 Jose Rojas (Spa) Movistar Team
7 Daryl Impey (RSA) Orica-Scott
8 Petr Vakoc (Cze) Quick-Step Floors
9 Phil Bauhaus (Ger) Team Sunweb
10 Enrico Gasparotto (Ita) Bahrain-Merida
1 BMC Racing Team 48:57:00
2 Team Sky 0:00:44
3 Movistar Team 0:00:58
4 Trek-Segafredo 0:01:15
5 Orica-Scott 0:01:24
6 FDJ 0:01:44
7 Team Lotto NL-Jumbo 0:01:48
8 Astana Pro Team 0:02:05
9 Lotto Soudal 0:02:10
10 Quick-Step Floors 0:02:13
11 AG2R La Mondiale 0:02:15
12 Bora-Hansgrohe 0:02:27
13 CCC Sprandi Polkowice 0:02:37
14 Team Katusha Alpecin 0:02:48
15 UAE Team Emirates 0:02:58
16 Team Sunweb 0:03:04
17 Bahrain-Merida 0:03:26
18 Cannondale Drapac Professional Cycling Team 0:03:30
19 Team Dimension Data 0:03:31
20 Roompot-Nederlandse Loterij 0:03:45
21 Wanty-Groupe Gobert 0:04:04
22 Manzana Postobon Team 0:04:24
23 Cofidis, Solutions Credits 0:04:27
24 Caja Rural-Seguros RGA 0:04:36
25 Soul Brasil Pro Cycling Team 0:05:19
1 Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team 5:07:12
2 Daniel Martin (Irl) Quick-Step Floors
3 Adam Yates (GBr) Orica-Scott 0:00:03
4 Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
5 Ilnur Zakarin (Rus) Katusha-Alpecin
6 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky
7 Alberto Contador (Spa) Trek-Segafredo
8 Tejay Van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team
9 Michael Woods (Can) Cannondale-Drapac 0:00:08
10 Davide Formolo (Ita) Cannondale-Drapac
GC after stage 3
1 Tejay Van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team 10:24:33
2 Samuel Sanchez (Spa) BMC Racing Team 0:00:41
3 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky 0:00:44
4 Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team 0:00:45
5 Christopher Froome (GBr) Team Sky 0:00:49
6 Marc Soler (Spa) Movistar Team 0:01:10
7 Alberto Contador (Spa) Trek-Segafredo 0:01:13
8 Adam Yates (GBr) Orica-Scott 0:01:18
9 Bauke Mollema (Ned) Trek-Segafredo 0:01:25
10 Jarlinson Pantano (Col) Trek-Segafredo
1 Nacer BOUHANNI FRA COF 27 3:04:27
2 Davide CIMOLAI ITA FDJ 28 +0
3 Daryl IMPEY RSA ORS 33 +0
4 Alexander EDMONSON AUS ORS 24 +0
5 Dion SMITH NZL WGG 24 +0
6 Pieter SERRY BEL QST 29 +0
8 Petr VAKOC CZE QST 25 +0
9 Jose ROJAS ESP MOV 32 +0
10 Bauke MOLLEMA NED TFS 31 +0

1 Tejay Van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team 13:29:00
2 Samuel Sanchez (Spa) BMC Racing Team 0:00:41
3 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky 0:00:44
4 Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team 0:00:45
5 Christopher Froome (GBr) Team Sky 0:00:49
6 Marc Soler (Spa) Movistar Team 0:01:10
7 Alberto Contador (Spa) Trek-Segafredo 0:01:13
8 Adam Yates (GBr) Orica-Scott 0:01:18
9 Bauke Mollema (Ned) Trek-Segafredo 0:01:25
10 Jarlinson Pantano (Col) Trek-Segafredo

Procycling - E3-Harelbeke and Gent-Wevelgem: Sep Vanmarcke: "I want to focus on the race, not on the pain"

He's one of my favourite riders and this time of year is the focus of his season. The elusive victory in the Ronde and/or Paris-Roubaix remains his main goal and he worked hard to get there at the top of his shape. But he crashed in Strade Bianche and the consequences seem not completely over. He's going to test himself again in E3-Harelbeke and Gent-Wevelgem, two beautiful races that represent as well a valuable aim. Let's see whta he said!

Sep Vanmarcke:
"I'm fine. The ribs are not yet totally okay, but since this weekend I felt they’re improving. Doctors say I won't damage it more with racing, so that's good to know. I want to focus on the race, not on the pain.
Both in E3 and Gent-Wevelgem I've had several top five results, so they suit me well. But both are different races. E3 has more hills. Gent Wevelgem has the wind playing a key role. But both races I like. In both there is a very high level because the top of the classics riders are at the start with their best form. In both races it's really important to have good position at the right moments. There are many important sections, so there are many fights for position.
After the opening weekend, we had a good view on everything and everybody, so we could work from there. We are developing how to make it perfect.  I'm sure we will do well as a group here. Everybody has a good condition and really wants to do his work well."

Cannondale-Drapac for E3-Harelbeke
Alberto Bettiol (ITL)
Kristijan Koren (SVN)
Sebastian Langeveld (NLD)
Ryan Mullen (IRL)
Tom Scully (NZL)
Tom Van Asbroeck (BEL)
Dylan Van Baarle (NED)
Sep Vanmarcke (BEL)

Cannondale-Drapac for Gent-Wevelgem
Kristijan Koren (SVN)
Sebastian Langeveld (NLD)
Ryan Mullen (IRL)
Tom Scully (NZL)
Tom Van Asbroeck (BEL)
Dylan Van Baarle (NLD)
Sep Vanmarcke (BEL)
Wouter Wippert (NLD)


Procycling: Dwars door Vlaanderen... and tonsillitis

I have a 'severe tonsillitis' my doctor said, and since Monday I'm taking antibiotics, but I got ill on Friday night and on Saturday I didn't go to work.
So now I'm sick at home, coughing all the time, often with fever, and I can't go out. Cycling races are very welcome!
This one is a nice Belgian race, with a bit of cobbles. I like this kind of races. And Yves Lampaert is a good guy. He went in a break with Gilbert, Lutsenko and Durbridge, then solo in the last kms. A very nice victory, and he looked very satisfied.
In the women's race Lotta Lepisto won. I didn't watch it but I'm glad that it was POSSIBLE to watch it.

Yves Lampaert:
"For me it’s a dream that came true. It’s not that far from my home and I did a lot of recons to do this race. To win, for me it’s a fantastic gift that I can give to the team and thanks to everybody."
“To win a World Tour classic in the Quick-Step Floors kit gives me an amazing feeling. I can’t tell you how happy I am for myself and for the team. Together with Philippe, who proved again today what a huge champion he is, we did a superb job. We had the strength in numbers and this played in our advantage. When I attacked, I wasn’t sure I will open a gap, despite feeling strong, but I noticed they couldn’t bridge across and that gave me confidence. The final kilometers of the race were like a short and tough time trial, but I gave everything. To win Dwars door Vlaanderen is a dream come true, especially as I did this together with such a fantastic team and in front of so many supporters!” 

Philippe Gilbert:
“We were always on the front today. After the selection I made on Berendries, some guys in the group started to sit in, so we decided to go again, this time on Eikenberg. On Paterberg, we were first and second at the bottom of the climb and went full gas. Behind, Styby and Niki did a great job and helped us stretch out our advantage to one minute. By Nokereberg, we knew this was enough to win, so our plan was to attack there, and after they caught me, it was Yves’ turn to follow up with a move. He made it all the way to the finish and I’m very happy for him and the team, this is a big day for us!”

Lotta Lepistö:
“I just started passing riders and saw a gap to the front and put the big gear on and rode across. The group was smaller after the Paterberg then we rolled and rolled and then there were several attacks. Lisa [Klein] did an amazing job today. She is incredible. We were very tired, it was a hard race. I think everyone was racing all or nothing. In the end, there were 16 riders and Lisa said ‘I will give everything to help you’. She took me to the front in the sprint and I won. It’s super nice. I was hoping for at least one win in the Spring Classics and now the monkey is off my back. Everybody is just trying to help each other all the time. The riders are just there for each other all the time and we don’t hesitate to help each other.”

1 Lotta Lepistö (Fin) Cervelo Bigla Pro Cycling Team
2 Gracie Elvin (Aus) Orica Scott Women
3 Lisa Brennauer (Ger) Canyon SRAM Racing
4 Lucinda Brand (Ned) Team Sunweb Women
5 Thalita De Jong (Ned) Lares-Waowdeals
6 Lotte Kopecky (Bel) Lotto Soudal Ladies
7 Romy Kasper (Ger) Alé Cipollini
8 Janneke Ensing (Ned) Alé Cipollini
9 Katarzyna Niewiadoma (Pol) WM3 Pro Cycling
10 Ann-Sophie Duyck (Bel) Drops Cycling Team
1 Yves Lampaert (Bel) Quick-Step Floors 4:47:17
2 Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Quick-Step Floors 0:00:37
3 Alexey Lutsenko (Kaz) Astana Pro Team
4 Luke Durbridge (Aus) Orica-Scott
5 Dylan Groenewegen (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo 0:01:01
6 Oliver Naesen (Bel) AG2R La Mondiale
7 Tiesj Benoot (Bel) Lotto Soudal
8 Dylan Van Baarle (Ned) Cannondale-Drapac
9 Mitch Docker (Aus) Orica-Scott
10 Florian Senechal (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits