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Weekend Round-Up – Week 20

Wanty on fire

Although last weekend was a historic one for our four wheel hero in Spain, where Dutchman Max Verstappen became the youngest driver ever winning a Grand Prix, there was enough action on two wheels as well. And our BBB riders played a major part in last weekend racing, winning in France and Belgium, on the road as well as off-road.

In Belgium our CST-Superior Brentjens MTB Racing Team member Hans Becking was having a pretty tough weekend. Doing a ‘little’ training ride first on his road bike, competing in the GP Criquielion and competing afterwards in a 75km mountainbike marathon. With a pretty impressive 119th place in Criquielion, Hans rode the 183 kilometres and 1781 meters of elevation in almost 4 hours. A day afterwards his buddy David Beulens got him excited for the next adventure already, competing in a mountainbike marathon of 75km, the Ardennes Trophy. Apparently the race of the day before got Hans in the right mindset, because the first place was the only thing that counted for the Dutch mountainbiker, finishing on the highest step of the podium. Congrats Hans with this big win!

Hans Becking during the GP Criquielion, finishing 119th on a tough race.

One day after his ‘training ride’ Hans found himself on the highest spot of the podium of the Ardennes Trophy Marathon, a 75km mountainbike marathon race.

In the same region in Belgium the team of Bart Brentjens was having a sponsor weekend with one of their main sponsors. Besides riding the bikes it was a weekend full of yoga sessions and wine tasting in the evening. Conditions could be worse!

A little preride yoga session on the Brentjens sponsoring weekend…

… probably needed the yoga session for the hangover after this wine tasting event. Conditions could be worse on a sponsoring mountainbike event in the Belgium Ardennes!

With new rider Jiri Novak who finished just off the podium in a Czech mountainbike race last weekend, there was even more to celebrate for the team. Allthough racing for the win, Jiri still was content with this achievement.

 

Racing in France

With two races in France there were some big results for our Team Wanty-Groupe Gobert. Sprinter Kenny de Haes was one of the fastest men in the peloton in the Tour de Picardie, a short stage race in the northern part of France. With winning stage 3 and ending up on the third spot of the podium in the final GC, Kenny proved to be in shape. Impressive riding by the Belgian guy.

So happy with my 2nd win of the season. Once again my team did a great job! #TDP2016 #RideForAntoine

Een foto die is geplaatst door Kenny Dehaes (@kennydehaes) op

Kenny de Haes winning in the Tour de Picardie.

From the other side! #TDP2016

Een foto die is geplaatst door Kenny Dehaes (@kennydehaes) op

It’s rare you see a win from this side, Kenny de Haes in the Tour de Picardie from the back.

A couple of miles more to the southeast of France it were Jerome Baugnies and Marco Minnaard racing at high speed. Stage 3 saw both guys on the highest spots of the podium, with the win for Jerome and second place for Marco. Jerome dedicated his win to Antoine Demoitié, who lost his live earlier in the season during a horrific incident. In the final stage Jerome didn’t take any risk securing his second place in the final GC.

Jerome Baugnies dedicating his victory to his teammate Antoine Demoitié.

 

The fight for pink continues

After the second rest day the guys in Italy are preparing for some brutal racing up ahead. With a couple of flat stages there are still some chances for the sprinters, but when we are approaching the weekend, the first big mountain stages are showing up in the route book. But first let us take a look at the stages of the beginning of this week. Today could well be too hard for the sprinters with some sketchy climbs in the last kilometres of the stage. But tomorrow and Thursday is one for the fast guys for sure. Especially tomorrow could well be a target for Arnaud Démare. With two steep hills just before the finish line in Asolo, this stage looks a little bit like the final kilometres of Milan-San Remo and we all know how that ended up for the young French sprinter. And with these two steep hills, Arnaud has a big advantage over the big TGV’s of the peloton like Andre Greipel, because it’s harder for those riders to attack those climbs. At least Arnaud has prepped himself properly, by getting some motivation of the biggest sprint legend of cycling in history according to this picture at the start of one of the stages last week. Good luck Arnaud attacking the next stages!

Mariooo! 😎

Een foto die is geplaatst door Demare (@arnaud.demare) op

Did FDJ-sprinter Arnaud Démare receive some motivational speeches from this legend? We will see during the upcoming stages. Good luck Arnaud!