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PCM.daily » PCM.daily's Management Game » [Man-Game] Teams HQ
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[PCT] Xero Racing '22 | Berlin
jandal7
i.imgur.com/XeFjWPg.png

January Preview
Xero make their PCT return with a flurry of races in January, beginning as we often did with the two Down Under races, before taking in races in Asia, Africa and South America, with 19 of our 21 riders starting their seasons - just the Kiwi climbers who have to wait until the first race of February to do so.
Down Under Classic
9th of January | Top 5 Race Goal | HC
Last Time (2020): 19th, Luke Rowe | Best Result: 13th, Luke Rowe (2019)

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Profiles/hc_duc.jpg

HugoHouleFlorianVermeersch
Mornevan NiekerkYacineHamza
HenryTesfaye HarrisNilsSchomber
JamalidinNovardiantoReganGough

A race we should love but really struggle with in our two bites at the apple, Luke Rowe was 13th after a failed late attack in 2019 and only 19th in the sprint in 2020 - hopefully Hugo Houle can find some more success through either method. Xero debut for our loanee Regan Gough as well as Yacine Hamza's first race for us on a full contract and first since 2020!
Tour Down Under
13-18th of January | Win Team Goal | HC
Last Time (2020): 2nd, Hugo Houle | Best Result: 2nd, Hugo Houle (2020)

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Profiles/top_australia.jpg

HugoHouleYacineHamza
BachirouNikiemaCorbinStrong
HenryTesfaye HarrisReganGough
JamalidinNovardiantoIlanvan Wilder

Our first Team Goal of the season and it's a win goal - Hugo Houle back for revenge after losing the 2020 edition by just four seconds to Xero alum Tosh van der Sande. Some stiff competition as always here but we know how strong our guy is and he has a solid team around him for the flat and hilly stages. Corbin Strong and Ilan van Wilder make their professional cycling debuts!
Vuelta al Tachira
21-30th of January | Do Some Cool Stuff Race Goal | C2
Last Time (2017): 14th, Igor Antón | Best Result: 14th, Igor Antón (2017)

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Profiles/t1_tachira.jpg

BachirouNikiemaIlanVan Wilder
SalimKipkemboiVitoBraet
CorbinStrongHenriVandenabeele

Fair to say there are mixed memories here - Antón had a memorable stage win and run in yellow, but Bennett crashed in the first mountain stage and was injured, while Salinas lost 10 minutes trying to help him, while Antón was 1st on GC with those two both in the top 10 just 20 seconds back, our race went from amazing to a disaster. This time we'd cut a finger off for such a good race - Nikiema and Kipkemboi lead a very young squad (aiming for some breakaway magic and KoM fun. Thanks to the C2 dispensation rules, we also get to meet our stagiaires Braet and Vandenabeele before they join us at Avenir and the main team from August onwards.
Hong Kong Challenge
25-27th of January | Win Race Goal | C1
Last Time (2020): 5th, Joseph Areruya | Best Result: 5th, Joseph Areruya (2020)

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Profiles/mg_hongkong.jpg

JosephAreruyaHaiTesfaye Huang
RobertStannardJohannvan Zyl
DanielHabtemichaelFlorianVermeersch
Mornevan NiekerkNilsSchomber

A very strong team for this three-day race in Hong Kong, Areruya makes his first appearance of the season, as do Stannard and Habtemichael as lieutenants rather than leaders. van Zyl, Tesfaye Huang and Vermeersch are great support on those stages too, and van Niekerk and Schomber are here for the Stage 2 time trial. A tough startlist is certain, and we can never get too confident about a race with an ITT, but we are here for the win.
Franceville Classique
30th of January | Top 50 + Breakaway Race Goal | PTHC
Last Time (2020): 27th, Mekseb Debesay | Best Result: 27th, Mekseb Debesay (2020)

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Profiles/mg_franceville.jpg

JamalidinNovardiantoNilsSchomber
FlorianVermeerschDarrenYoung
YacineHamzaReganGough

Not a race we are particularly banking on to bring points, though if any of Novardianto, Vermeersch (who is one of our cobbled leaders a few years before he was probably expecting!) and Young (our final new rider to make his season debut) can nab any points by finishing in the Top 50 that would be great. Otherwise our target is to get on TV by getting into the morning breakaway.
 
jandal7
i.imgur.com/4OQVv4J.png

Down Under Classic
9th of January | Top 5 Race Goal | HC
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Profiles/hc_duc.jpg

Our season began, as it often does, in Albert Park for the Down Under Classic.

i.imgur.com/3Dijcy6.jpg

We kept our powder dry and due to the high peloton speed Houle opted to try his luck in the sprint rather than a late attack. Jams and Morne piloted him into position, about 10th wheel in the sprint.

i.imgur.com/hAQwVem.jpg

Unfortunately he didn't have the top speed on the day to challenge the better-positioned riders, but finished a solid 8th place to start our season off with some good points - Jams also got his share in 17th, with our local hero also sneaking into the points. We know the big goal of Houle's Aussie trip was still to come, with the team's first win goal in the Tour Down Under beginning the next week.

1Lahcen SaberColombini-Adler Aalterpaint1h40'16
2Peter KennaughHelloFresh - Lampres.t.
3Asbjorn Kragh AndersenCarlsberg - Danske Banks.t.
...
8Hugo HouleXero Racings.t.
17Jamalidin NovardiantoXero Racings.t.
30Henry Tesfaye HarrisXero Racings.t.
31Morne Van NiekerkXero Racings.t.
119Florian VermeerschXero Racings.t.
145Regan GoughXero Racings.t.
149Nils SchomberXero Racings.t.
150Yacine HamzaXero Racings.t.
 
jandal7
i.imgur.com/4OQVv4J.png

Tour Down Under
13-18th of January | Win Team Goal | HC
i.imgur.com/XEJKRTv.png

Two years ago at the Tour Down Under Hugo Houle held the ochre leader's jersey going into the final stage, before losing it to bonus seconds. This year, we were back looking to go one better, in fact we'd made it one of our 4 official team goals for the year. On Stage 1 Houle was 10th in the sprint.

i.imgur.com/QO9P3AH.jpg

On Stage 2 Ilan van Wilder, in just his second stage of pro cycling, made it into the morning breakaway, a great start to his Xero career!

i.imgur.com/N8S2yNW.jpg

Houle lead for a long while in the sprint but was pipped into third in the final 100m, moving him to sixth on GC.

i.imgur.com/VmYxtOd.jpg

Not to be outdone by his fellow neo-pro, Corbin Strong entered into the breakaway on Stage 3, with the first hilltop finish of the race.

i.imgur.com/wPSOJbk.jpg

And a brilliant result for him in his first race as he held on ahead of the peloton by inches to take fifth on the stage. Houle was ninth, but moved to third on GC amidst a reshuffle, as Jay McCarthy took a solo win to leapfrog him. Houle failed to gain any bonuses on Stage 4, but moved to 2nd due to Eislers being dropped.

i.imgur.com/W2eN1vX.jpg

On the decisive Willunga Hill stage, Houle was a very impressive 4th... but right on his shoulder was McCarthy, meaning he only gained two seconds in bonuses. He needed to win Stage 6 and ultimately couldn't, meaning he'd finish in second here once again. The sprint days, not the hills, ultimately letting us down! Not what we came for, but still a great result for him and the team - January looking like a strong month so far!

1Jay McCarthyAmaysim Cervelo18h54'13
2Hugo HouleXero Racing+ 23
3Pedro Miguel PaulinhoBinance+ 26
...
105Yacine HamzaXero Racing+ 5'25
120Jamalidin NovardiantoXero Racings.t.
142Regan GoughXero Racing+ 6'31
161Henok Tesfaye HeyiXero Racing+ 7'33
172Bachirou NikiemaXero Racing+ 8'55
182Ilan Van WilderXero Racing+ 9'03
187Corbin StrongXero Racing+ 10'31
 
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Nemolito
January is going very well for you indeed. A shame you only just missed out on the team goal, but second is definitely still worth something. Houle deserves his rest now Pfft
www.pcmdaily.com/images/mg/Awards2020/newmember.png
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/Awards2021/mgreporter21.png
 
jandal7
Nemolito wrote:
January is going very well for you indeed. A shame you only just missed out on the team goal, but second is definitely still worth something. Houle deserves his rest now Pfft

Yeah he's put a good shift in, time for Areruya and Bennett to pick up some slack in the next few weeks Grin And yeah, for sure second is a bit better goal-wise than missing it by a long way Smile
 
jandal7
i.imgur.com/4OQVv4J.png

Hong Kong Challenge
25-27th of January | Win Race Goal | C1
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Profiles/mg_hongkong.jpg

Joseph Areruya managed an impressive 5th in this race as a younger rider back in 2020 - with two huge jumps in development we came back here looking for more. With the ITT in the middle of the race we knew it wasn't guaranteed to shake out our way, but we were determined to try and make it happen.

i.imgur.com/nnlMrTl.jpg

Vermeersch and the boys were keeping a lid on proceedings in the peloton during the early and middle stages of the opening day, and we can see here our young Belgian even breaking a small group off the front of the peloton for a time with 60km to go!

i.imgur.com/sC8oEH4.jpg

However there was some real strength in the breakaway and with 5km to go they still weren't caught. With many big names including Beltran and Dunbar in trouble behind, Areruya went to the front himself and started to put the hurt in for the rest of the peloton, both to gap those others and to try and go after the remaining breakaway.

i.imgur.com/57p86nt.jpg

In the end he got them all but Ian Boswell, and somehow still had the strength to sprint for 2nd place on the day. An okay result, but with many top stage racers and time-trialists remaining we knew it wasn't ideal. And indeed, he fell to 16th on GC after the time trial - though Daniel Habtemichael entered the top 10 and took hold of the U25 jersey.

i.imgur.com/PZIAmVv.jpg

With 3.5km to go on Stage 3's summit finish, it was Beltran who attacked first, looking to repeat his stage win from last year. Areruya was close in his wheel, followed by Paulinho.

i.imgur.com/zr67NML.jpg

Our man immediately took over from Beltran at the front and ground him and then Paulinho off his wheel in a great show of strength! Now the hunt was on for time on those above him in GC (up to two minutes ahead) and for a stage win as well.

i.imgur.com/U18IxE8.jpg

A solid gap was forming (unfortunately with Habtemichael losing time to Conci, right behind him in the white jersey race) behind Areruya and then to some more GC contenders, but it looked like too little too late to target the GC podium with the likes of Masnada and Kritskiy holding strong.

i.imgur.com/x5jGnby.jpg

However the stage win well and truly belonged to Joseph, as there was simply nobody capable of following him today, a great ride to have some consolation in a disappointing race overall, though we must commend those stage racers and all-arounders who finished above him on their resolve on the hilly stages! And finishing best of the puncheurs and outperforming some of his rivals for the season is a good sign, and always nice to have the first win of the season for the team already! 6th on GC and tied for the points classification in the end, with Habtemichael slipping to 12th on GC and 2nd in the U25, with Stannard 3rd in that competition also.

Hopefully this is one of Areruya's weaker races overall, but even if the result wasn't what we came for he looked very strong, best from the peloton on both road stages and gained some confidence moving forwards - and some hunger for higher placings.

1Timofey KritskiyGjensidige Pro Cycling Team8h13'18
2Fausto MasnadaJura GIANTS+ 18
3Rafael ReisRed Bull Zalgiris+ 25
...
6Joseph AreruyaXero Racing+ 44
12Daniel HabtemichaelXero Racing+ 1'46
35Robert StannardXero Racing+ 5'40
81Johann Van ZylXero Racing+ 10'21
90Hai Tesfaye HuangXero Racing+ 10'52
130Morne Van NiekerkXero Racing+ 16'25
139Florian VermeerschXero Racing+ 18'23
166Nils SchomberXero Racing+ 25'58
 
Fabianski
Congrats on that dominant win on S3!
I don't think it was a weak race by Areruya; he did a good job on the hilly stages, with the expected drop in the TT. Obviously he could have tried to get a gap in S1 (Fausto would have loved some help according to the pics), but for me he never was the top favorite for the GC. With those small gaps it's a bit unlucky to miss out on the GC podium, but I'm sure he'll rock the races that are tailor-made for him Smile
 
jandal7
Fabianski wrote:
Congrats on that dominant win on S3!
I don't think it was a weak race by Areruya; he did a good job on the hilly stages, with the expected drop in the TT. Obviously he could have tried to get a gap in S1 (Fausto would have loved some help according to the pics), but for me he never was the top favorite for the GC. With those small gaps it's a bit unlucky to miss out on the GC podium, but I'm sure he'll rock the races that are tailor-made for him Smile

Thanks Smile Weak race was not the right words, I meant I hope it's one of his weaker results, as in I don't want him to be 6th all year in GCs, but obviously his actual strength in the road stages was remarkable really, obviously a bit of luck on Stage 1 seeing how bad Beltran and Kinoshita did but on Stage 3 he was a step above anybody else and I know it won't continue but still very exciting Grin And yeah, there is a version of that race with big gaps where he can win the GC but I think he maximised himself quite well in the more conservative racing we saw to still get 6th despite the TT being so dominant.

And hey, from my perspective Areruya was leading the pack by himself for a lot of the Stage 1 finish, maybe Fausto should have taken a pull Pfft
 
Nemolito
As mentioned in other HQ's, love re-reading races I reported on through other POV's. Although he finished second on the first stage, Areruya didn't seem to be in an incredible form there. Also not the greatest TT as expected, but definitely a strong ride on the final stage and imo an okay race after all, even though you scored less points than hoped/expected. Decent GC by Habtemichael as well Smile
www.pcmdaily.com/images/mg/Awards2020/newmember.png
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/Awards2021/mgreporter21.png
 
jandal7
Nemolito wrote:
As mentioned in other HQ's, love re-reading races I reported on through other POV's. Although he finished second on the first stage, Areruya didn't seem to be in an incredible form there. Also not the greatest TT as expected, but definitely a strong ride on the final stage and imo an okay race after all, even though you scored less points than hoped/expected. Decent GC by Habtemichael as well Smile

Yeah it was not awful by any stretch of the imagination, and as said it was maximising himself for that kind of not-selective racing, but you can't come to a race with a rider with the profile of the guy that won it last year and not hope to win it this year Grin And yeah was happy with Habtemichael, shame about his weird falling off on Stage 3 or he could have done a lot more, looking at Top 5 and white jersey. But still good.
 
jandal7
i.imgur.com/4OQVv4J.png

Vuelta al Tachira
21-30th of January | Do Some Cool Stuff Race Goal | C2
i.imgur.com/7zW03ae.png

Nikiema and Kipkemboi were the figureheads of a young sextet taking on our only C2 outing of the season in Venezuela. We were hoping for some breakaway and KoM action, with the former two both having a great chance to display their new national champion's jerseys!

i.imgur.com/OKnZGOT.jpg

It was Ilan van Wilder, though, setting the standard for us with his second breakaway in as many races, just seven days into his pro career but already a member of multiple escapes, it bodes well!

i.imgur.com/8vDi4bh.jpg

Bachirou Nikiema had top 15 finishes in the sprints mixing it up on Stages 1 and 2, but on the third attempt broke into the Top 10 with a very impressive 6th place - much more than any of us, most of all him, thought he could get in a mass sprint!

i.imgur.com/3AZ0iVP.jpg

Kipkemboi lead the breakaway action on Stage 4, getting himself involved in the racing for the first time, while Nikiema proved his Top 10 was no fluke by finishing 7th on Stage 5. Both put in honourable rides for Top 50s in the MTT, before Kipkemboi was again on the offensive on Stage 7.

i.imgur.com/NgmaDB9.jpg

Our Kenyan was the penultimate survivor of the Stage 8 breakaway, hanging on for 13th on the stage which moved him to 4th in the KoM and had him pass Nikiema on GC! He went after more points on Stage 9 and did make the move, but couldn't rise onto the KoM podium thanks to the GC riders getting points - he was 2nd of the non-GC. He also finished a credible 38th on GC with Nikiema 47th and stagiare Henri Vandenabeele also in the Top 60 in his first ever race, a nice start. In fact five of our six riders were in the Top 70. Not an amazing race points-wise (especially compared to Hamish Schreurs' C2 efforts in 2020) but a cool experience for our youngsters and a nice taste of leadership and responsibility for Kipkemboi and Nikiema!

1Andrew TalanskyGlanbia30h34'57
2Yuriy VasylivBNZ-Superhero Racing+ 2'01
3Aberlardo AblenadoCaja Rural Cycling Team+ 2'34
...
38Salim KipkemboiXero Racing+ 21'21
47Bachirou NikiemaXero Racing+ 27'11
59Henri VandenabeeleXero Racing+ 35'54
61Ilan Van WilderXero Racing+ 36'58
66Corbin StrongXero Racing+ 38'58
102Vito BraetXero Racing+ 58'59
 
jandal7
i.imgur.com/4OQVv4J.png

Franceville Classique
30th of January | Top 50 + Breakaway Race Goal | PTHC
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Profiles/mg_franceville.jpg

We came to Gabon with no established cobblers, and only three riders who had any real experience riding on them (well, Schomber has experience but it doesn't do him any good). We just wanted to get into the breakaway and maybe one of Novardianto, Young or Vermeersch have a great day and find themselves in the points.

i.imgur.com/iwTMEV0.jpg

With a rather large breakaway which would eventually get swallowed by a rather small peloton, they didn't get much TV time, but it was a very exciting day for that trio, as all three of them managed to get into the morning move! A tactic we hadn't tried before to put every capable rider of the team in the breakaway, but surely we should do it again sometime, because all three finished well inside the points, a great day well exceeding our expectations and three very strong rides to way overachieve! Jams, as he often does for us, lead the way in 26th, with Young and Vermeersch in 30th and 31st respectively.

1Joeri StallaertBralirwa - Stevens4h33'06
2Clement VenturiniBinances.t.
3Sam BewleyAmaysim Cervelos.t.
...
26Jamalidin NovardiantoXero Racings.t.
30Darren YoungXero Racings.t.
31Florian VermeerschXero Racings.t.
131Yacine HamzaXero Racing+ 3'55
146Regan GoughXero Racing+ 6'32
...
175Nils SchomberXero Racing+ 32'03
176Firdaus AhmadIndosat Ooredoo+ 36'32
 
jandal7
i.imgur.com/4OQVv4J.png

January Review | Normal Business Resumed
Our first month back in the PCT was a busy one, and it went about as well as expected - no wild overperformances, but nowhere did we crash and burn. A Top 10 in a flat classic, a 2nd in a GC for Houle, Areruya being a hero who can't TT, Kipkemboi in breakaways Jams being the apple of our eye - all things we've seen numerous times before and probably what many would have predicted for each of those races.
Rider of the Month
Areruya grabbed our first win of the season, but delivering some great results Down Under it easily goes to...

i.imgur.com/hAQwVem.jpgTaking 8th in the sprint - Down Under Classic

Hugo Houle
Total RoTM Wins | 4
RoTM Wins This Season | 1
Rankings
January was always going to be a good month for us and we're not letting the fact that a good month with lots of RDs (the most in the division) has us high in the rankings get us overexcited, but yes, if you must know... we are doing pretty well. Houle is also 2nd in the individual standings.

1pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/tlt.pngTrans Looney Tunes443
2pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/bnb.pngBinance384
3pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/amc.pngAmaysim Cervelo358
4pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/xr0.pngXero Racing356
5pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Micros/brs.pngBralirwa - Stevens304

STOP THE COUNT haha guys did you see me say it its the thing tru-
 
jandal7
i.imgur.com/4OQVv4J.png

Volta a Portugal
1st-8th of February | Top 5 + U25 Win Race Goal | PTHC
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Profiles/portugal.png

The Volta a Portugal is the only race we have entered every year since our PCT debut in 2018, always with George Bennett as our man. His record is 5th, 3rd, 11th and 11th so far - we were hoping to tend towards the former two results rather than the latter, but with a decent length ITT and a strong field it would be tough. We also brought Daniel Habtemichael, who looked capable of a solid result and to compete with Pogacar for the white jersey - though first priority obviously to be Bennett's right hand man.

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Reports/PTHC/Portugal/mg22_portugal_01_PCM0007.jpg

Schomber won the opening prologue here last year and was back for his crown, but could only manage 8th this time around. Bennett was the first of the GC men on the undulating Stage 3, an attentive 9th but no time gained. Meanwhile Habtemichael moved into the white jersey, after finishing 10 seconds ahead of Pogacar in the prologue.

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Reports/PTHC/Portugal/mg22_portugal_05_PCM0348.jpg

On Stage 5 Bennett was 4th on the hilltop finish maintaining great position the whole time, moving to 6th on GC. Habtemichael lost a disappointing two minutes to the top GC men, conceding 4 seconds to Pogacar but keeping the U25 lead.

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Reports/PTHC/Portugal/mg22_portugal_07_PCM0448.jpg

He'd lose it in Stage 7's individual time trial, staying close to Pogacar and finishing a very credible 13th on the day, but in the end conceding 16 seconds to his rival to put himself 10 seconds behind him on GC. Bennett lost over two minutes to the top riders and slipped to 10th on GC, while Habtemichael rose to 11th, just three seconds behind him.

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Reports/PTHC/Portugal/mg22_portugal_08_PCM0564.jpg

Habtemichael kicked off GC hostilities on the climactic Stage 8, with Pogacar looking like he might be in trouble he attacked hard as we looked to put out a plan to see him or Bennett gain time. He was brought back but had done the damage needed to drop the Slovenian.

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Reports/PTHC/Portugal/mg22_portugal_08_PCM0609.jpg

In the end both of our guys finished in the main GC group, where the rest of the Top 10 from the start of the day, minus Pogacar, finished safely, giving them both a spot gained on GC to have two of us in the Top 10 as Habtemichael secured the U25 victory.

Looking at the names above not many we can really complain about Bennett not beating given how the hilly stages were fairly non-selective, so a decent finish for him. A very good one for Habtemichael, his first every classification win and GC Top 10 after narrowly missing out on each in Hong Kong. A quiet but decent finish by Fouche with 36th on GC and 5th in the U25.

1Taylor PhinneyIsostar - Specialized27h41'17
2Sam OomenLierse SK - Pizza Ullo PCTeam+ 1'27
3Warren BarguilTeam UBS+ 1'47
...
9George BennettXero Racing+ 3'29
10Daniel HabtemichaelXero Racing+ 3'32
36James FoucheXero Racing+ 13'18
68Johann Van ZylXero Racing+ 19'53
77Salim KipkemboiXero Racing+ 21'41
156Morne Van NiekerkXero Racing+ 50'04
169Florian VermeerschXero Racing+ 58'26
175Nils SchomberXero Racing+ 1h07'10
 
Fabianski
I'd say it was a decent race by Bennett, given the strong startlist and the number of TT kilometers. But Habtemichael made up for that missed Top5 goal - two in the Top10 is a great result in PTHC I'd say! And white on top of that doesn't hurt, either Wink

However, I'm not sure what the Franceville profile is doing there - wrong link I guess Pfft
 
jandal7
Fabianski wrote:
I'd say it was a decent race by Bennett, given the strong startlist and the number of TT kilometers. But Habtemichael made up for that missed Top5 goal - two in the Top10 is a great result in PTHC I'd say! And white on top of that doesn't hurt, either Wink

However, I'm not sure what the Franceville profile is doing there - wrong link I guess Pfft

Yeah it was alright for sure, as said other than Burke you can't really complain about the ones above him, he could have beaten them in a more selective early part of the race but this wasn't an unlikely outcome. And yeah great race by Habtemichael, very happy with him so far this year!

And thanks, fixed Pfft
 
jandal7
i.imgur.com/4OQVv4J.png

Omloop Het Nieuwsblad
4th of February | Breakaway + Top 30 Race Goal | HC
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Profiles/c0_omloophetnieuws.jpg

In Omloop Het Nieuwsblad we were dreaming of repeating the Franceville heroics, with three great finishes and three in the breakaway.

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Reports/HC/Omloop/pics/02.jpg

Hamza made it into the day's breakaway and had a good ride. Ultimately we couldn't find our way into the points, with Young our best finisher in 67th.

1Joeri StallaertBralirwa - Stevens5h06'16
2Maxime DanielHelloFresh - Lampres.t.
3Patrick GamperLierse SK - Pizza Ullo PCTeams.t.
...
67Darren YoungXero Racing+ 15'51
74Jamalidin NovardiantoXero Racing+ 19'18
91Regan GoughXero Racing+ 23'44
100Ilan Van WilderXero Racing+ 27'19
109Yacine HamzaXero Racing+ 30'06
123Corbin StrongXero Racing+ 34'22
 
jandal7
i.imgur.com/4OQVv4J.png

Le Samyn
10th of February | Breakaway + Top 30 Race Goal | HC
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Profiles/mg_samyn1.jpg

In Le Samyn we were dreaming of repeating the Franceville heroics, with three great finishes and three in the breakaway.

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Reports/HC/Samyn/PCM0005.jpg

Gough made it into the day's breakaway and had a good ride. Ultimately we couldn't find our way into the points, with Vermeersch our best finisher in 74th.

1Sam BewleyAmaysim Cervelo4h31'43
2Tom DavidSauber Petronas Racings.t.
3Matteo TrentinCarlsberg - Danske Bank+ 9
...
74Florian VermeerschXero Racing+ 3'28
82Jamalidin NovardiantoXero Racing+ 4'02
90Regan GoughXero Racings.t.
93Darren YoungXero Racing+ 5'51
105Yacine HamzaXero Racing+ 7'40
153Ilan Van WilderXero Racing+ 12'57
171Corbin StrongXero Racing+ 19'03
177Nils SchomberXero Racing+ 22'16
 
jandal7
i.imgur.com/4OQVv4J.png

February Review | Valentine's for Some
Three races in February contrasted a hectic January (and a nearly non-existent March, but more on that later), with the Volta a Portugal seeing two Top 10 GC finishes, and Omloop Het Nieuwsblad and Le Samyn seeing two 74th place finishes (and in all fairness two breakaways). A decent month for what it was which should see us survive the barren six weeks to come without falling too far past mid-table before the season gets going in earnest in April.
Rider of the Month
Bennett pipped him to 9th, but for a very positive 10th place and the U25 victory it goes to...

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Reports/PTHC/Portugal/mg22_portugal_08_PCM0564.jpgShowing some aggression in the U25 battle - Volta a Portugal

Daniel Habtemichael
Total RoTM Wins | 1
RoTM Wins This Season | 1
 
jandal7
i.imgur.com/4OQVv4J.png

Strade Bianche
24th of March | Win Race Goal | HC
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2022/Profiles/mg_franceville.jpg

The team arrived in beautiful Tuscany for the famed Strade Bianche with only one objective: deliver Joseph Areruya to the win in Siena.

i.imgur.com/l8MJuOZ.jpg
i.imgur.com/M1zpEjd.jpg

The team did their job well, with Vermeersch doing his workhorse thing and Tesfaye Herin using his local road knowledge to set a solid tempo in the peloton, putting some hurt in and keeping a manageable leash on the breakaway.

i.imgur.com/ePzLoCQ.jpg

Areruya, as he always be relied upon to do, was the first attacker of the favourites with 7km to go over the antepenultimate climb, creating a selection but not the separation he wanted.

i.imgur.com/jxjPs62.jpg

He closely followed Kinoshita's move over the penultimate climb, and managed to stay in touch with the Japanese champion.

i.imgur.com/YTqo8DL.jpg

This too did not create an elite final selection, but did put those two, van Garderen and Benoot and in pole position on the ultimate climb.

i.imgur.com/w6ZAyan.jpg

However the two riders who attacked would live to regret those moves, as they had to battle for the final podium place behind their fresher companions. At the line, Areruya had less than half a wheel length on his rival, but it was enough to secure a solid if unspectacular podium finish in his first classic of the season.

1Tejay Van GarderenSauber Petronas Racing5h01'08
2Tiesj BenootPhilips - Force Indias.t.
3Joseph AreruyaXero Racings.t.
...
44Robert StannardXero Racing+ 4'19
51Johann Van ZylXero Racings.t.
58Hmario Tesfaye HerinXero Racing+ 4'59
62Salim KipkemboiXero Racings.t.
67Ilan Van WilderXero Racings.t.
83Bachirou NikiemaXero Racings.t.
143Florian VermeerschXero Racing+ 9'51

Rider of the Month
With only the one race in March, this can double as our March review. No surprise that this goes to...

i.imgur.com/ePzLoCQ.jpgLooking for an exit visa - Strade Bianche

Joseph Areruya
Total RoTM Wins | 5
RoTM Wins This Season | 1
 
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