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Crossroads – Against the Wind
Driedaagse Brugge - De Panne (WT) 27/3 2019


Latest Winners:

2018: Elia Viviani - 2017: Philippe Gilbert - 2016: Lieuwe Westra

Magnus Cort Nielsen, Alexey Lutsenko, Laurens De Vreese, Davide Villella
Rodrigo Contreras, Daniil Fominykh, Yuriy Natarov

Magnus Cort has turned out to be a very strong rider in these races where you need a good combination of technic, sprint and punch. So we must expect a podium or better from him.

Top Favourites
Magnus Cort NielsenAstana Pro Team
John DegenkolbTrek - Segafredo
Jens DebusschereTeam Katusha- Alpecin
Fabio JakobsenDeceuninck-Quick Step
Yves LampaertDeceuninck-Quick Step
Edward TheunsTrek - Segafredo
Silvan DillierAg2r La Mondiale
Jean Pierre DruckerBORA - hansgrohe
Bryan CoquardVital Concept - B&B Hotels
Søren Kragh AndersenTeam Sunweb

Other Sprinters
Hugo HofstetterCofidis, Solutions Crédits
Amaury CapiotSport Vlaanderen - Baloise
Mark RenshawTeam Dimension Data
Daniel McLayEF Education First p/b Cannondale
Patrick BevinCCC Team

Other Cobblers
Lukas PöstlbergerBORA - hansgrohe
Alberto BettiolEF Education First p/b Cannondale
Ian StannardTeam Sky
Amund Grøndahl JansenTeam Jumbo-Visma
Laurens De VreeseAstana Pro Team

Other Notable Riders
Alexey LutsenkoAstana Pro Team
Taylor PhinneyEF Education First p/b Cannondale
Maciej BodnarBORA - hansgrohe
Alexis VuillermozAg2r La Mondiale
Victor CampenaertsLotto Soudal


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Posted on 23-10-2019 11:34
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Congrats on winning Catalunya, a race Bilbao and Gidich won't forget anytime soon. As Aviva's manager I'm very jealous of the overall quality of your squad. Smile I wonder how things work out with the predefined training, maybe PCM has gotten smarter but in older versions lots of riders will get very tired as the season goes on.
Regarding the training our stars will be fine, as it will be possible to move or reduce race days to make ok form in important races, But we will have many rider riding below 90% and at the end of the season also very tired.

Anyway the point is that we have to almost stick with the "plan", so can't get all the best riders peaking in all the important races, basically that is one top rider in good form / race Frown if backed by another top rider he will be completely out of form.

To make an example after this race Bilbao will also do Basque Country in fine form, after that the rest of his season he will be struggling with Form/Tired.
Edited by Tamijo on 09-07-2019 17:03


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Driedaagse Brugge - De Panne (WT) 23/3 2019

Brugge - De Panne 188.6 km


Driedaagse Brugge – De Panne was originally a stage race held from 1977, for many years a 4 stage event with the last two stages on the final day, the last as an ITT, from 2005 upgraded to a 2.HC.

The race found is current form as a one day cobbled race in 2018, and this season it was upgraded to Would Tour (B) level.

Remains of settlements in the Brugge area have been found dating from the first century BC, but a permanent settlement in the core of what is now Brugge was formed from the early 800’s to around 950 were also the first Count of Flanders established themselves in the region and fortified themselves against Viking attacks. The town grew into a larger fortified city and became the capital of the County of Flanders from 1089.

Top 5 media favorites:
Magnus Cort Nielsen (Astana), John Degenkolb (Trek) Edward Theuns (Trek) Søren Kragh Andersen (Sunweb) Yves Lampaert (Quick Step)

Onze – Lieve - Vrouwkerk (Church of Our Lady) was constructed from 1270 -1280 with later additions from 14th to 15th century



Though weather conditions today, just 6°C rain and winds sometimes up to 30 km/h.

Andreas Schillinger (BORA) opens the stage and form what will become the 7 rider breakaway of the day, together with Jimmy Janssens (Corendon) and Nicolas Edet (Cofidis) on paper the strongest riders in the breakaway.

They will get a gap of a little over four minutes after about 30 km, but from there the pack will increase the pace and it will stabilize around 3 minutes close to the 100 km mark.

German Andreas Schillinger (35) best result so far was 2nd in Czech Cycling Tour, he is still looking for his first victory


Not much to report from the next 40 km, we have passed the first two cobbled sectors, Quick Step, Dimension Data and lately Sunweb most active in the chase, with the gap now under two minutes.

56 km left we have passes the 2nd cobbled sector and some tough hills, with winds above 30 km/h and the peloton now very stretched now, with the first 40+ riders disconnected.

It is raining quite bad now but luckily we have had on crash so far.

Sunweb’s Louis Vervaeke (25) leads the peloton at a punishing pace on this undulated part of the race, the Belgian have had a fine season with a GC 10th in UAE Tour and a 2nd in Nokere Koerse.


With about 30 km left the peloton has reduced the gap to under a minute, the breakaway explodes after Jimmy Janssens has attacked, and soon the riders are reeled in one by one.

With 23 km left we have just passed the final cobbled section and as a result the pack is down to just 29 riders, Astana lost Contreras, Fominykh and Natarov.

19 km left, Pim Ligthart (Direct Energie) attacks with Søren Kragh (Sunweb) and Yves Lampaert (Quick Step) also Silvan Dillier (Ag2r) have laid some distance to the other favourites.

Astana now forced to lead the pursuit, not to let these dangerous riders get to much distance.

Silvan Dillier close the gap, the four rider pass under the 10 km banner with 28”

Dutch Pim Ligthart (30) came 8th in Het Nieuwsblad and 5th in Dwars door West-Vlaanderen and it looks like he could also make a fine result here. Ligthart has 5 professional wins, latest a stage in Vuelta a Andalucia 2015


The pursuit come closer and closer, but when the sprint starts the breakaway still got about 10 meters, this will be very close.

It turns out that the four riders in the breakaway played their cards almost to perfection, but one of the sprinters from the pack was just that little bit faster today.

Mark Renshaw (Dimension Data) wins Brugge - De Panne in front of Søren Kragh Andersen and Silvan Dillier. No matter how you look at this it is one of the most surprising victories in cycling, we have seen for a very long time.

Pim Ligthart and Yves Lampaert from the break 4th and 7th, best from Astana Magnus Cort 8th.

Australia Mark Renshaw (36) is best known from his stunning lead-outs for teammate Mark Cavendish at their heydays with HTC–Highroad and later Quick-step, Renshaw latest win was a stage in Tour of Britain 2014


Astana Pro Team

We missed the attack and was not calm enough to make others bring it back, paying the price over the last 2-3 km. We can’t be stratified with 8th in a race like this considering the many important classic coming up with much harder competitors.

1Mark RenshawTeam Dimension Data5h00'02
2Søren Kragh AndersenTeam Sunwebs.t.
3Silvan DillierAg2r La Mondiales.t.
4Pim LigthartDirect Energies.t.
5John DegenkolbTrek - Segafredos.t.
6Amund Grøndahl JansenTeam Jumbo-Vismas.t.
7Yves LampaertDeceuninck-Quick Steps.t.
8Magnus Cort NielsenAstana Pro Teams.t.
9Fabio JakobsenDeceuninck-Quick Steps.t.
10Alexey LutsenkoAstana Pro Teams.t.

8Magnus Cort Nielsens.t.
10Alexey Lutsenkos.t.
23Davide Villellas.t.
71Daniil Fominykh+ 2'34
79Laurens De Vreese+ 2'34
133Yuriy Natarov+ 6'25
152Rodrigo Contreras+ 9'37


If you're interested in weird music:


25/3 Sean De Bie - Grand Prix de Denain
25/3 Simon Jones – Tour de Tochigi
26/3 Jan Barta – Tour of Cartier
28/3 Wesley Kreder - Kattekoers
31/3 Guillaume Martin - Classic Loire Atlantique
31/3 Eduardo Speulveda – NC Argentina ITT
31/3 Piotr Havik - Tour of Fatih Sultan Mehmet
31/3 Brendan Rhim – Tour d’Algérie

Injuries Astana (31/3) :
Cataldo – Broken wrist: about 6 weeks
Davide Ballerini – Broken arm: about 6 weeks
Luis León Sánchez – Serious scrapes and bruises: 1 – 2 weeks
Jonas Gregaard – Cold: A few days (can race)

Other Important riders with serious injuries after Volta a Cataluña:
Nils PolittTeam Katusha- Alpecin8 - 9 weeks
Tom Jelte SlagterDimension Data8 - 9 weeks
Julian AlaphilippeQuick Step7 - 8 weeks
Giacomo NizzoloDimension Data 6 - 7 weeks
Sonny ColbrelliBahrain - Merida6 weeks
Oliver NaesenAg2r La Mondiale3 - 4 weeks
Fernando GaviriaUAE Team Emirates3 - 4 weeks
Nacer BouhanniCofidis3 - 4 weeks
Rafal MajkaBORA - hansgrohe3 weeks
Daniel OssBORA - hansgrohe2 weeks


27/3 – 31/3 Coppi e Bartali (2.1)

Stage 1: Gatteo – Gatteo 93.9 km

There were a lot of attempts to break free over the short stage but we never got what could be considered a breakaway, with constant high speed chase from the peloton reeling back every rider.

With just 7.4 km left a huge crash took down 25 riders, Astana’s leader Zeits and also Boaro was down, they lost 2'40” today.

The stage was won by Heinrich Haussler (Bahrain), Astana’s best Nikita Stalnov 7th.

Oliviero Troia (UAE) took the most KoM points.

1Heinrich HausslerBahrain - Merida2h11'12
2Jasper PhilipsenUAE Team Emiratess.t.
3Andrea GuardiniBardiani CSFs.t.


Stage 2: Gatteo – Gatteo TTT 13 km

Horrible TTT for Astana, 19th of 21 teams and lost 1’29”

Best placed Astana rider in GC now Hugo Houle 53rd at 1’35, Heinrich Haussler (Bahrain) still leads the race.

1Androni Giocattoli - Sidermec15'20
2Bahrain - Merida+ 4
3Israël - Cycling Academy+ 9


Stage 3: Riccione - Sogliano sul Rubicone 124.7 km


The breakaway slowly form over the first 20 km, 11 riders got 57”. But already on the first climb only two are left Pierpaolo Ficara (Amore & Vita) and Paolo Totò (Sangemini) the got 1’14” which shows that the peloton as fast in this short stage.

Already on the 2nd and very steep climb the breakaway is over, with 69 km left we still got to climb “Ville Di Monte Tiffi” Cat.1 three times.

With 53 km left Andrey Zeits punctures, The pace is now very hard and it will be hard for anyone to close the 1’34” Zeits lost, a 16 rider favorite group now lead Astana with Merhawi Kudus, Hugo Houle and Manuele Boaro.

The selection happens whenever riders are dropped from the leading group, with 10 riders left. Astana’s Kudus attacks, he got 1.7 km to the top of the last climb, 9 km to the finish line. Kudus got 32” over the top but on the downhill Jan Tratnik catch up and the pursuit is also closing in.

Jan Tratnik wins the stage in front of Merhawi Kudus, the next 5 riders get the same time, including Astana’s Hugo Houle

Jan Tratnik leads the GC, Merhawi Kudus 4th and Hugo Houle 5th.

1Jan TratnikBahrain - Merida3h31'14
2Merhawi KudusAstana Pro Teams.t.
3Marco CanolaNippo-Vini Fantini-Faizanès.t.


Stage 4: Cervalcore - Cervalcore 170.0 km

A completely flat stage with 5 intermediate sprints inside the first 36 km makes for a very hard opening where it is impossible to get away. It is mainly Andrea Guardini (Bardiani) and Marko Kump (Adria Mobil) fighting for the points and bonus seconds, both scoring 20 point over the 5 intermediate sprints.

After the sprints are over Hugo Houle makes a solo move but never gets more than 25”, after that we get a 5 rider breakaway but the peloton is fast and keep them around 2 minutes

To make a long uninteresting story short, we get a mass sprint won by Philipsen (UAE)

1Jasper PhilipsenUAE Team Emirates3h54'07
2Andrea GuardiniBardiani CSFs.t.
3Davide CimolaiIsraël - Cycling Academys.t.


Stage 5: Modenese – Montegibbio 12.1 km (ITT)

In the hilly ITT Astana’s Manuele Boaro was a top 3 favourite, and lived up to it, beating Fausto Masnada (Androni Giocattoli) with 3” for the stage win.


Fausto Masnada time was fast enough to take the GC pushing Jan Tratnik down to 2nd.
Mattia Cattaneo 3rd in the time trail also moved up from 9th to 6th in the GC, also Matteo Busato (Androni Giocattoli) and Manuel Senni (Bardiani) with good ITT’s entering top 10.

Astana’s Merhawi Kudus and Hugo Houle both protected their GC still 4th and 5th.

Final Standings GC

1Fausto MasnadaAndroni Giocattoli - Sidermec10h12'13
2Jan TratnikBahrain - Merida+ 24
3Marco CanolaNippo-Vini Fantini-Faizanè+ 1'42
4Merhawi KudusAstana Pro Team+ 1'46
5Hugo HouleAstana Pro Team+ 2'05
6Mattia CattaneoAndroni Giocattoli - Sidermec+ 3'28
7Simone VelascoNeri Sottoli - Selle Italia - KTM+ 3'57
8Matteo BusatoAndroni Giocattoli - Sidermec+ 4'07
9Manuel SenniBardiani CSF+ 4'25
10Jasper PhilipsenUAE Team Emirates+ 4'30

1Andrea GuardiniBardiani CSF56

1Jan TratnikBahrain - Merida30

1 Astana Pro Team 30h10'58

1Merhawi KudusAstana Pro Team10h13'59


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4th and 5th is still good Smile
sutty68 wrote:
4th and 5th is still good Smile

It fine - the stage win in the ITT was sweet for Manuele Boaro his only good result of the season.


If you're interested in weird music:
E3 Harelbeke (WT) 29/3 2019


Latest Winners:

2018: Niki Terpstra - 2017: Greg Van Avermaet - 2016: Michał Kwiatkowski

Magnus Cort Nielsen - Laurens De Vreese - Alexey Lutsenko - Omar Fraile
Davide Villella - Zhandos Bizhigitov - Rodrigo Contreras

We have a strong field here and our leader Cort can’t be seen as a favourite, so a good result will be anything inside top 10.

Notable Riders:

Punchy Cobblers
Tiesj BenootLotto Soudal
Peter SaganBORA - hansgrohe
Michael Valgren AndersenTeam Dimension Data
Zdeněk ŠtybarDeceuninck-Quick Step
Gianni MosconTeam Sky

Pure Cobblers
Niki TerpstraDirect Energie
Sep VanmarckeEF Education First p/b Cannondale
Dylan Van BaarleTeam Sky
Jasper StuyvenTrek - Segafredo
Sebastian LangeveldEF Education First p/b Cannondale
Yves LampaertDeceuninck-Quick Step

Elia VivianiDeceuninck-Quick Step
Magnus Cort NielsenAstana Pro Team
Edvald Boasson HagenTeam Dimension Data
Christophe LaporteCofidis, Solutions Crédits
Fabio JakobsenDeceuninck-Quick Step
Sacha ModoloEF Education First p/b Cannondale

Other notable riders
Ian StannardTeam Sky
Wout Van AertTeam Jumbo-Visma
Luke DurbridgeMitchelton-Scott
Mads PedersenTrek - Segafredo
Silvan DillierAg2r La Mondiale


If you're interested in weird music:
E3 Harelbeke (WT) 29/3 2019

Harelbeke - Harelbeke 203.1 km


E3 Harelbeke was created in 1958, as oppose to what you may think E3 does not refer to the sponsor, it’s a ref. to the former E03 highway (including Antwerp to Kortrijk section) today renamed E17.

The race takes place between Harelbeke, Zottegem, Geraardsbergen and Ronse, with both start and finish in Harelbeke, the race profile to some extent resamples the profile of Ronde van Vlaanderen and although an important race in its own right also an important preparation for the Monument coming up 9 days later.

In what is today Harelbeke we have remains from a Roman villa, we have five farms with wells from the period 200 - 400 BC, and we got a “Lidric of Harelbeke” a lord or maybe even a Count death in 836. Today Harelbeke has about 28.000 inhabitants and is almost grown together with the larger Kortrijk, located further down the Leie River to the southwest.

Top 5 media favorites:
Niki Terpstra (Direct Energie) Sep Vanmarcke (Education First) Peter Sagan (BORA) Tiesj Benoot (Lotto Soudal) Zdeněk Štybar (Quick Step)

Harelbeke seen from the River



7°C, clouded with just a mild breeze.

Benoit Vaugrenard (FDJ) opens the stage alone, soon Floris De Tier (Jumbo) attacks with Robert Power (Sunweb) at wheel. We have attacks left and right from the peloton over the first 20 km.

Kenneth Vanbilsen (Cofidis) and Ivo Oliveira (UAE) joins the breakaway after another 10 km, the distance now about 2 minutes.

First August Jensen (Israël) and later Jan Bakelants (Sunweb) has both attacked and joins up but never get more than 35” before they are reeled back in.

Over the first cobbled sector Robert Power (Sunweb) have left everyone else behind and leads the race on his own, while the other escapees all falls back to the peloton.

140 km left, distance 1’36”

Australian Robert Power (23) won Japan Cup last season, his best result this season was a top 20 in Omloop Het Nieuwsblad


The fight for positioning in the peloton keeps the pace up in the peloton and Robert Power never makes it past the 2nd cobbled sector.

The race never got a chance to settle as we get a new acceleration basically as soon as the early break was caught, this time Bart De Clercq (Wanty) first, group of other riders attacking behind him. Before the 3rd cobbled sector they have united into a 10 rider breakaway.

Although the breakaway includes very good riders, the peloton finds a more modest pace and they got 2’35” at the 100 km mark.

The group is: Amund Grøndahl Jansen (Jumbo) Bart De Clercq (Wanty) Bert Van Lerberghe (Cofidis) Christophe Laporte (Cofidis) Edward Theuns (Trek) Marcel Sieberg (Bahrain) Marcus Burghardt (BORA) Michael Valgren Andersen (Dimension Data) Piet Allegaert (Sport Vlaanderen) Taylor Phinney (Education First)

Belgian Bart De Clercq (32) best season result was 4th i Classic Loire-Atlantique. De Clercq is back for the 2019 season after a crash in January 2018 keeping him out of the entire 2018 season


Over the 3rd cobbled section we get another group of 6 riders getting 53” on the pack, all strong riders at Flemish soil, Marcato (UAE) Bettiol (Education First) Kuznetsov (Katusha) Van Keirsbulck (CCC) Sarreau (FDJ) and Drucker (BORA)

Some 15 km later we get a huge crash in the peloton 57 rider down or blocked by the crash, Van Hecke (Sport Vlaanderen), Guerreiro and Cras both Katusha have to abandon.

64 km left, 9 riders lead, De Clercq was dropped now at 28”, group Bettiol at 1’47”, peloton at 2’41”

Quick Step and Lotto Soudal starts to increase the pace, attempting to control a situation that might be getting dangerous with so many strong rider out in front. Also Direct Energie sometimes taking turns in the pack


50 km left and now the fireworks have really started with a group of 23 top favourites in the pursuit of the two groups further ahead, Tiesj Benoot, Peter Sagan, Sep Vanmarcke, Dylan Van Baarle, Zdeněk Štybar, Yves Lampaert, Gianni Moscon in this group 1’27” behind the leading 9.

In next group at 2’11” we find Astana’s Magnus Cort and Alexey Lutsenko, also Jasper Stuyven in this group

Peloton at 2’47” with Niki Terpstra, Sebastian Langeveld, Mads Pedersen and Wout Van Aert.

Magnus Cort in difficulties, after a series of hard cobbled sectors


With a litte more than 30 km left group Sagan have caught first group Bettiol and now also the leading 9 riders, we get a new attach from what is now a leading group of 27 riders, Zdeněk Štybar with Bert Van Lerberghe and Dylan Van Baarle. At this point group Cort 19 riders at 1’10”, we are now passed the last cobbled sector and just one hard hill left.

Group Štybar never got more than 30” and little by little the favourite group reeled them back in, while at the same time more and more riders was dropped. With 17 kilometre left we get a new attempt from top favourites Tiesj Benoot and Peter Sagan.

The acceleration again split the favourites. This is the situation under the 10 km banner:


The six riders in the leading group Benoot, Boasson Hagen, Sagan, Štybar, Van Baarle and Van Lerberghe turn out to be a lot stronger than the group behind, gaining a minute over the final 10 km. The win is between the 6 riders and not surprisingly Peter Sagan very strong in a reduced group like this one, but it is quite close.

Sagan wins E3 Harelbeke 2019 in front of Edvald Boasson Hagen and Zdeněk Štybar

This was Peter Sagan’s 8th season win, and his 2nd win in E3 Harelbeke, he also won the race in 2014 at the time riding for Cannondale


Astana Pro Team

Well…..a result we are not proud of no matter how we analyse it.
We took some serious damage losing a lot of time early and we might have had a better result if we were more aggressive earlier, but the competition was just too hard and we have to realise that a top 10 was ambitious with the riders we got.

1Peter SaganBORA - hansgrohe5h04'58
2Edvald Boasson HagenTeam Dimension Datas.t.
3Zdeněk ŠtybarDeceuninck-Quick Steps.t.
4Dylan Van BaarleTeam Skys.t.
5Bert Van LerbergheCofidis, Solutions Créditss.t.
6Tiesj BenootLotto Soudals.t.
7Christophe LaporteCofidis, Solutions Crédits+ 1'01
8Niki TerpstraDirect Energies.t.
9Gianni MosconTeam Skys.t.
10Jasper StuyvenTrek - Segafredos.t.

21Magnus Cort Nielsen+ 3'32
22Alexey Lutsenko+ 3'53
68Laurens De Vreese+ 9'31
106Omar Fraile+ 15'09
140Davide Villella+ 19'15
151Zhandos Bizhigitov+ 20'30
162Rodrigo Contreras+ 24'03


If you're interested in weird music:
Gent – Wevelgem (WT) 31/3 2019


Latest Winners:

2018: Peter Sagan - 2017: Greg Van Avermaet - 2016: Peter Sagan

Magnus Cort Nielsen, Alexey Lutsenko, Laurens De Vreese, Omar Fraile
Davide Villella, Daniil Fominykh, Yuriy Natarov

We got a top 10 ambition in Ronde van Vlaanderen, this race should fit us a little better so we are aiming for 6-8th. Magnus Cort Nielsen is on paper only a top 20 cobbler so we need him to have great legs and stay with the best as long as possible, hoping to make good use of his and speed, punch and sprint.

That said we had a difficult E3 Harelbeke so maybe we are aiming a bit too high in the cobbled classics where we do not have to top favourite.

True Hybrids
Peter SaganBORA - hansgrohe
Magnus Cort NielsenAstana Pro Team
Edvald Boasson HagenTeam Dimension Data
Matteo TrentinMitchelton-Scott

Other Hilly Cobblers
Tiesj BenootLotto Soudal
Zdeněk ŠtybarDeceuninck-Quick Step
Jasper StuyvenTrek - Segafredo
Silvan DillierAg2r La Mondiale

Other Sprinters
Alexander KristoffUAE Team Emirates
Arnaud DémareGroupama - FDJ
Elia VivianiDeceuninck-Quick Step
Pascal AckermannBORA - hansgrohe
Marcel KittelTeam Katusha- Alpecin

Other Cobblers
Sep VanmarckeEF Education First p/b Cannondale
Dylan Van BaarleTeam Sky
John DegenkolbTrek - Segafredo
Yves LampaertDeceuninck-Quick Step
Sebastian LangeveldEF Education First p/b Cannondale
Luke DurbridgeMitchelton-Scott
Mads PedersenTrek - Segafredo


If you're interested in weird music:
Gent-Wevelgem (WT) 31/3 2019

Deinze – Wevelgem 236.1 km


The race have keeps its iconic name but since 2003 its original start location Ghent was moved 17 km south west to Deinze, unique for Gent-Wevelgem is as oppose to the other famous Belgian classic races, the fact that it is not centered around the hills in the area south and east of Oudenaarde, but instead on both sides of the Belgian/French border in Heuvelland.

Six riders share the record of victories. Belgians Robert Van Eenaeme, Rik Van Looy, Eddy Merckx and Tom Boonen, Italian Mario Cipollini and Slovak Peter Sagan all with three victories, Peter Sagan able to make it four today.

Deinze was first mentioned in 840, at the time in the hands of Flemish noble couple Titzekin and Adelvina. The city has suffered a lot due to warfare, partly destroyed and depopulated in 1327, 1380, 1452, 1580 and the city also suffered a lot during both world wars.

Top 5 media favorites:
Peter Sagan (BORA) Niki Terpstra (Direct Energie) Alexander Kristoff (UAE) John Degenkolb (Trek) Zdeněk Štybar (Quick Step)

Kasteel van Ooidonk located about 6 km from central Deinze, was originaly created in 12th century, but destroyed twice by warfare and finaly ruined by fire in 1579 after which most the current buildings was constructed.



6°C, clouded with winds in the region of 20-30 km/hour.

The weather report said clouded but let’s just call it rain, at least at the start its umbrellas all over the place. Reto Hollenstein (Katusha) first to attack with Cyril Gautier (Vital Concept), the duo keeps a gap open while several other smaller groups attempt to get away but are all brought back, especially BORA keeping up the pace.

Eventually a new group of four riders, Maarten Van Trijp (Corendon), Mark Padun (Bahrain – Merida) Asbjørn Kragh Andersen (Sunweb) and Nicholas Schultz (Mitchelton) establish a pursuit and close the gap to the leading duo, with this the peloton settles down after about 53 km.

Meanwhile we get a small crash forcing Scotson (Mitchelton) to leave the race with an elbow injury.

Swiss Reto Hollenstein started racing at World Tour level in 2015 when his team IAM Cycling promoted. He came to Katusha in 2017. His best result 2nd in Baloise Belgium Tour 2016


The breakaway got 4’20 after about 60 km, from there the peloton slowly increase the pace and the gap gets smaller, over the first cobbled climb Casselberg it is down to 3’13”.

The pace is now fast and many riders are dropped, with 80 km left Astana has lost Daniil Fominykh, Omar Fraile and Davide Villella.

Groupama - FDJ put presure on the first cobbled section and hills, more than 80 riders disconnected


The pace in the pack settles a bit and many of the disconnected rider re-join, Astana has a full team although they are struggling to get back in front.

Over the 2nd cobbled sector, we get some punctures, Jens Debusschere (Katusha) Christophe Laporte (Cofidis) and Alexey Lutsenko (Astana).

We get an attack from the favourite group, 7 riders with 21” to the pack Cort, Bennot, Stuyven, Langeveld, Theuns, Bonifazio and Roux. The acceleration split it pack into fractions 23 riders left in the favourite group Sagan, Terpstra, Kristoff etc.

Up front we also had a split, now Cyril Gautier and Mark Padun alone in front, 20” to Van Trijp.

French Cyril Gautier (31) lead the duo up Monteberg, Gautier has 5 profesionel wins latest a stage in Tour du Limousin 2017


The peloton led by Education First, reeled in the group with Magnus Cort. With 45 km left the leading duo has exactly one minute on the pack. (41 riders)

Padun attacks dropping Cyril Gautier, and over the last cobbled hill, attack by Terpstra, Van Baarle, Viviani, Stannard and Serry from the pack.

Group Terpstra was reeled in and the pace in the pack slowed down a little, enough for Alexey Lutsenko to get back in the favourite group. 30 flat km left, Padun got 31”.

The long hard and rainy race have worn on the rider, with only Padun in front, a period with ceasefire in the bunch


Padun was reeled in with 25 km left, signaling that the final as about to begin.
We get a lot of attacking, in this order Roelandts, Sarreau (km 23); Stuyven (km 21), those were brought back.

Then we get what is to become the decisive move started by Dylan Van Baarle and Zdeněk Štybar.

The high pace split the pack creating a pursuit composed by Sagan, Terpstra, Vanmarcke, Benoot, Hagen, Stuyven, Roelandts and Pedersen.

Group Cort loses 50” fast.

Pedersen was dropped by group Sagan and 9 rider form a leading group.
With 8 km left new acceleration up front from Jurgen Roelandts (Movistar)

Belgian Jurgen Roelandts (33) has 8th professional wins, latest stage 5 in Volta Valenciana last season.


Jurgen Roelandts was caught and the 9 riders pass under the red kit together with Peter Sagan in front, Zdeněk Štybar 2nd at his wheel and Edvald Boasson Hagen side by side with Dylan Van Baarle about 2 meter back, Jurgen Roelandts at Hagen’s wheel while the others have lost some meters.

Peter Sagan wins Gent-Wevelgem in front of Edvald Boasson Hagen, Jasper Stuyven with a fast last km takes the last podium.

In the 2nd group Alexander Kristoff beats Magnus Cort Nielsen for 10th coming in at 1’10”

Peter Sagan previously won the race three times and a record six podium finishes, with this win he have become the first four time winner surpassing riders like Eddy Merckx, Tom Boonen and Mario Cipollini


Astana Pro Team

Aiming for 6-8, just outside top 10 is a bit disappointing, but not too bad. The puncture Alexey had left Magnus alone in a critical period of the race.

1Peter SaganBORA - hansgrohe6h06'04
2Edvald Boasson HagenTeam Dimension Datas.t.
3Jasper StuyvenTrek - Segafredos.t.
4Tiesj BenootLotto Soudals.t.
5Zdeněk ŠtybarDeceuninck-Quick Steps.t.
6Jurgen RoelandtsMovistar Teams.t.
7Sep VanmarckeEF Education First p/b Cannondales.t.
8Dylan Van BaarleTeam Skys.t.
9Niki TerpstraDirect Energies.t.
10Alexander KristoffUAE Team Emirates+ 1'10

11Magnus Cort Nielsen+ 1'10
30Alexey Lutsenko+ 1'10
68Laurens De Vreese+ 5'33
118Davide Villella+ 9'35
129Yuriy Natarov+ 9'35
163Omar Fraile+ 17'00
164Daniil Fominykh+ 17'00


If you're interested in weird music:
A huge improvement already compared to E3, good ride from Magnus. Haven't had much time to keep up lately, but congrats on the overall win for Bilbao in Catalonia. Smile


Kiserlovski01 wrote:
A huge improvement already compared to E3, good ride from Magnus.

Yes, reflect that too much cobble is not great for Magnus - and this is good at least seen with "realism" eyes

congrats on the overall win for Bilbao in Catalonia. Smile

Thanks ! perfect race for us


If you're interested in weird music:


Rider top 20
1Peter SaganSlovakiaBORA - hansgrohe1967
2Miguel Angel LopezColombiaAstana Pro Team846
3Alejandro ValverdeSpainMovistar Team820
4Magnus Cort NielsenDenmarkAstana Pro Team807
5Tom DumoulinNetherlandsTeam Sunweb750
6Edvald Boasson HagenNorwayTeam Dimension Data735
7Tiesj BenootBelgiumLotto Soudal695
8Michal KwiatkowskiPolandTeam Sky625
9Michael MatthewsAustraliaTeam Sunweb615
10Pello BilbaoSpainAstana Pro Team565
11Robert GesinkNetherlandsTeam Jumbo-Visma533
12Nairo QuintanaColombiaMovistar Team520
13Vincenzo NibaliItalyBahrain - Merida510
14Zdeněk ŠtybarCzech-RepublicDeceuninck-Quick Step500
15Lilian CalmejaneFranceDirect Energie483
16Luis León SánchezSpainAstana Pro Team480
17Ion IzagirreSpainAstana Pro Team461
18Geraint ThomasUnited-KingdomTeam Sky460
19Romain BardetFranceAg2r La Mondiale450
20Daryl ImpeySouth-AfricaMitchelton-Scott446

Astana Top 10
2Miguel Angel LopezColombia846
4Magnus Cort NielsenDenmark807
10Pello BilbaoSpain565
16Luis León SánchezSpain480
17Ion IzagirreSpain461
21Omar FraileSpain418
23Alexey LutsenkoKazakhstan389
42Jakob FuglsangDenmark270
53Yevgeniy GidichKazakhstan195
76Gorka IzagirreSpain125

1Astana Pro Team4616
2Team Sky2719
3BORA - hansgrohe2698
4Team Sunweb2420
5Deceuninck-Quick Step2062
6Movistar Team1963
7Team Jumbo-Visma1843
8Team Dimension Data1747
9Lotto Soudal1582
10Trek - Segafredo1542
12Ag2r La Mondiale1338
13Direct Energie1298
14Bahrain - Merida1282
15EF Education First p/b Cannondale1201
16Team Katusha- Alpecin891
17UAE Team Emirates826
18Groupama - FDJ705
19Cofidis, Solutions Crédits514
20CCC Team439


Riders Top 20
1Peter SaganSlovakiaBORA - hansgrohe1427
2Magnus Cort NielsenDenmarkAstana Pro Team1052
3Daryl ImpeySouth-AfricaMitchelton-Scott862
4Alejandro ValverdeSpainMovistar Team723
5Miguel Angel LopezColombiaAstana Pro Team658
6Vincenzo NibaliItalyBahrain - Merida578
7Michal KwiatkowskiPolandTeam Sky564
8Tom DumoulinNetherlandsTeam Sunweb512
9Edvald Boasson HagenNorwayTeam Dimension Data508
10Michael MatthewsAustraliaTeam Sunweb502
11Robert GesinkNetherlandsTeam Jumbo-Visma486
12Simon GeschkeGermanyCCC Team454
13Fabio FellineItalyTrek - Segafredo450
14Alexey LutsenkoKazakhstanAstana Pro Team434
15Lilian CalmejaneFranceDirect Energie424
16Fabio AruItalyUAE Team Emirates421
17Jack HaigAustraliaMitchelton-Scott405
18Tiesj BenootBelgiumLotto Soudal403
19Omar FraileSpainAstana Pro Team400
20Nairo QuintanaColombiaMovistar Team398

Astana Top 10
2Magnus Cort NielsenDenmark1052
5Miguel Angel LopezColombia658
14Alexey LutsenkoKazakhstan434
19Omar FraileSpain400
22Ion IzagirreSpain378
28Pello BilbaoSpain332
33Luis León SánchezSpain304
37Jakob FuglsangDenmark291
60Gorka IzagirreSpain233
62Yevgeniy GidichKazakhstan224

1Astana Pro Team3558
2BORA - hansgrohe2473
4Team Sky2197
5Team Sunweb2158
6Movistar Team2083
7Lotto Soudal1826
8Deceuninck-Quick Step1604
9Trek - Segafredo1588
10Bahrain - Merida1551
11Team Jumbo-Visma1484
12Team Dimension Data1468
13EF Education First p/b Cannondale1300
14Groupama - FDJ1244
15CCC Team1243
16UAE Team Emirates1236
17Ag2r La Mondiale1230
18Team Katusha- Alpecin1209
19Direct Energie1132
20Cofidis, Solutions Crédits1046


If you're interested in weird music:
Dwars door Vlaanderen (WT) 3/4 2019


Latest Winners:
2018: Yves Lampaert - 2017: Yves Lampaert - 2016: Jens Debusschere

Alexey Lutsenko, Laurens De Vreese, Hugo Houle, Davide Villella
Andrey Zeits, Yevgeniy Gidich, Hernando Bohórquez

Our leader Alexey Lutsenko is something like amongst the 25 best at the bookmakers, so we can’t expect a lot from the race, we hope for inside top 15 but a more realistic goal is top 20.

Cobblers / Hilly
Tiesj BenootLotto Soudal
Niki TerpstraDirect Energie
Peter SaganBORA - hansgrohe
Zdeněk ŠtybarDeceuninck-Quick Step
Sep VanmarckeEF Education First p/b Cannondale
Gianni MosconTeam Sky
Jasper StuyvenTrek - Segafredo
Dylan Van BaarleTeam Sky
Wout Van AertTeam Jumbo-Visma
Silvan DillierAg2r La Mondiale

Other Cobblers
Sebastian LangeveldEF Education First p/b Cannondale
Yves LampaertDeceuninck-Quick Step
Edvald Boasson HagenTeam Dimension Data
Mads PedersenTrek - Segafredo
Luke DurbridgeMitchelton-Scott

Other Punchers
Xandro MeurisseWanty - Gobert Cycling Team
Diego UlissiUAE Team Emirates
Anthony RouxGroupama - FDJ
Guillaume MartinWanty - Gobert Cycling Team
Peter KennaughBORA - hansgrohe

Other Notable Riders
Ian StannardTeam Sky
Stijn VandenberghAg2r La Mondiale
Alexey LutsenkoAstana Pro Team
Edward TheunsTrek - Segafredo
Taylor PhinneyEF Education First p/b Cannondale


If you're interested in weird music:
Dwars door Vlaanderen (WT) 3/4 2019

Roeselare – Waregem 265.5 km


The profile in my DB was wrong so we are doing a version of Ronde van Vlaanderen

Dwars door Vlaanderen have been held annually since 1945, first edition with start from Sint-Truiden 140 km further east that nowadays. At the time the race was called Dwars door België. From the 1940’s to the 1960’s many editions was two day events from Waregem to eastern Belgian and back on the 2nd day. Form 2000 renamed Dwars door Vlaanderen and with start in Roeselare.

Belgian Rik Van Steenbergen (1924-2003) won the first edition, considered one of the best Belgian Riders of all times, with 25 grand tour stage wins, 3 World Championships and 5 monument wins.

Roeselare was first mentioned in 800’s from 1250 the town got city rights and a town hall was built on the marketplace.

Top 5 media favorites:
Peter Sagan (BORA) Niki Terpstra (Direct Energie) Alexander Kristoff (UAE) John Degenkolb (Trek) Zdeněk Štybar (Quick Step)




14°C, clouded with very little wind.

Astana’s Laurens De Vreese the first rider to attempt something, but he was not allowed to get away. Next it is Baptiste Planckaert (Wallonie-Bruxelles) and José Gonçalves (Katusha) opening a small gap.

Ludovic Robeet (Wallonie-Bruxelles), Casper Pedersen (Sunweb) and Hugo Houle (Astana) accelerates behind them and soon also Gianni Vermeersch (Corendon – Circus) got a few seconds on the pack.

The peloton keeps up the pace so even though we get a lot more attacks, with a break at one point up to 9 riders, the pack keeps them within view at least for the first 50 km, but when we pass the first cobbled sectors the pack calms down.

Casper Pedersen (Sunweb), Hugo Houle (Astana), Grega Bole (Bahrain) Maurits Lammertink (Roompot-Charles), Simon Geschke (CCC), Paul Martens (Jumbo), Nicolas Roche (Sunweb) and Robbe Ghys (Sport Vlaanderen) lead with 4’43”

After more than 70 km, we get what looks like a stabilized situation with an 8 rider breakaway


Lammertink was the last to join the breakaway and also the first to drop, now looking at about 80 km alone before he eventually was swallowed by the pack.

Astana loses first Andrey Zeits and a little later Hernando Bohórquez not able to keep up with the pace over the many cobbled sectors.

The 7 riders in front slowly loses time with 75 km left it is down to 2 minutes. Hugo Houle attacks on Boigneberg

Hugo Houle best season result was 5th in Coppi e Bartali, His only win was Canada National Championships (ITT) in 2015


Although he do not get away Houle’s acceleration drops Grega Bole.

At about the same time we see the first important splits in the bunch, with important rider losing contact, Tiesj Benoot, Edvald Boasson Hagen, Stijn Vandenbergh 53” behind the favourite group of 24 riders, besides Houle Astana has Lutsenko and De Vreese left.

52 km left and the leading 6 rides shake hands, their adventure is over.

At the climb to Achterberg and the breakaway was reeled in


After the break was over the pace went down and the first group grew to 46 riders, but that was just calm before the storm, from about 40 km a new and even more brutal selection began passing the 2.1 km cobbled Steenbeekdries.

Well placed Houle survived the split but Lutsenko and De Vreese ended in the 2nd group.

While Lutsenko with the help of De Vreese attacked from 2nd group, Houle with Sagan and other top riders got dropped at front.

33 km to the line this is the situation:


Lutsenko alone, desperatly trying to catch group Sagan


We get a new ceasefire with some hesitation in the leading group allowing the better riders such as Lutsenko and Sagan to re-join the leaders, a total of 15 riders now in the lead. Alexey Lutsenko, Dylan Van Baarle, Edvald Boasson Hagen, Gianni Moscon, Jasper Stuyven, Mads Pedersen, Mike Teunissen, Niki Terpstra, Peter Sagan, Sep Vanmarcke, Silvan Dillier, Tiesj Benoot, Wout Van Aert, Yves Lampaert and Zdeněk Štybar

But with about 25 km left the climb to Kruisbers split the group again now only 7 riders left: Van Baarle, Stuyven, Pedersen, Terpstra, Sagan, Vanmarcke and Štybar

While these seven riders stay together, the second group drops first Moscon and Durbridge, then Dillier and Lampaert.

With 13 km left Alexey Lutsenko and Edvald Boasson Hagen has also got rid of Benoot and Van Aert but they are now 2’30 behind the 7 leaders.

Up front it is Sagan in front of Štybar under the red kite, and even though he was in trouble earlier, Peter Sagan takes another win.

Lutsenko was able to drop Boasson Hagen and got in as 8th.

This was the first time Peter Sagan took part in Dwars door Vlaanderen, with this he got 10 season victories further improving his dominant lead at all the leader boards


Astana Pro Team

As a contrast to the resent results in the classics we got a fine top 10 here well within our expectations.

1Peter SaganBORA - hansgrohe6h54'02
2Zdeněk ŠtybarDeceuninck-Quick Steps.t.
3Jasper StuyvenTrek - Segafredos.t.
4Mads PedersenTrek - Segafredos.t.
5Sep VanmarckeEF Education First p/b Cannondales.t.
6Dylan Van BaarleTeam Skys.t.
7Niki TerpstraDirect Energies.t.
8Alexey LutsenkoAstana Pro Team+ 3'09
9Edvald Boasson HagenTeam Dimension Data+ 3'33
10Gianni MosconTeam Sky+ 4'05

8Alexey Lutsenko+ 3'09
23Laurens De Vreese+ 9'23
24Hugo Houle+ 9'23
95Yevgeniy Gidich+ 21'23
124Davide Villella+ 28'42
146Hernando Bohórquez+ 36'34
168Andrey Zeits+ 56'18


If you're interested in weird music:
Very good result for Lutsenko considering his race wasn't spotless. Also nice to see my birth town featured in the race preview. Wink


Sint-Truiden ?


If you're interested in weird music:
Tamijo wrote:
Sint-Truiden ?

No, talking about where the start is held now. Smile


Man, Sagan is winning everything. Good result from Lutsenko, great rider.
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