CyclingQuotes.com uses cookies for statistics and targeting ads. This information is shared with third parties.
ACCEPT COOKIES » MORE INFO »

Every day we bring you more pro-cycling news

Steegmans does a fantastic work to pass the usually flawless Lotto Belisol train and delivers Boonen perfectly to the first sprint win in the Tour of Belgium

Photo: Sirotti

ANDRÉ GREIPEL

RIDER PROFILE
|
NEWS

BELGIUM TOUR

RACE PROFILE
|
NEWS

ETIXX-QUICKSTEP

TEAM PROFILE
|
NEWS
28.05.2014 @ 19:46 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Tom Boonen (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) proved that his time as a top sprinter is not over yet when he beat one of the very best, André Greipel (Lotto Belisol), in the first stage of the Tour of Belgium. The Belgian star benefited from an excellent lead-out by his teammate Gert Steegmans who passed the usually flawless Lotto Belisol train and delivered his captain perfectly on the front, with Boonen easily holding off Greipel and Theo Bos (Belkin) to become the first leader of the race.

 

Tom Boonen didn't have the spring campaign that he had hoped for but the Belgian star hopes to bounce back with a strong showing in the second half of the season. Based on today's performance in the first stage of the Tour of Belgium, great things may be in store from the Omega Pharma-Quick Step rider.

 

Over the last few years, Boonen may have focused more on his classics skills than his sprints but occasionally he still tries his hand in the bunch sprints. Today he proved that he is still a very fast rider when he beat no less of a figure than André Greipel in his home race.

 

All seemed to be going according to plan for Lotto Belisol when their train - usually the best in the peloton - strung things out in the finale. Jens Debusschere set a brutal pace and when Jurgen Roelandts took over just before the flamme rouge, he went so fast that a gap appeared a few positions behind Greipel.

 

At this point, Boonen seemed to be out of contention as he was on Gert Steegmans' wheel just behind the Belkin train. However, the Dutch team used a lot of energy to close the gap and at this point Steegmans kicked into action.

 

While Greg Henderson was powering along on the front as he final lead-out man for Greipel, Steegmans moved up on the right-hand side with Boonen on his wheel. In an impressive display of strength, the pair passed Henderson easily and Boonen was delivered perfectly on the front.

 

For once, Greipel had to come from behind but the German champion didn't even seem to make up ground on Boonen. The Belgian easily held off his German rival and Theo Bos to take the first stage win and leader's jersey in his home tour.

 

The flat 173.6km stage from Lochristi to Buggenhout had been off to a very fast start with several attacks in the early part of the stage. It wasn't until the 24km mark that Pieter Vanspeybrouck (Topsport Vlaanderen), Laurens De Vreese (Wanty) and Antoine Demoitie (Wallonie) established the early break. For some time, the Cibel pair of Thomas Ongena and Mathias Van Holderbeke tried to bridge the gap but they never got closer than 30 seconds and were ultimately swallowed up

 

The gap reached a maximum of 5.43 after 56km of racing but the peloton always had everything under control. After 125km of racing, the gap was below the 2-minute mark and 7km further up the road, the escapees had less than a minute in hand.

 

Vanspeybrouck launched an attack that spelled the end for Demoitie and the leading pair was still 28 seconds ahead with 30km to go. At that point, Philippe Gilbert (BMC) launched an attack and he made it up to the leaders but 16km from the line, it was back together.

 

A crash brought down Stephen Cummings (BMC) while Timothy Stevens (3M) tried to surprise the peloton with a late attack. A few crashes brought down Kevin Peeters (Vastgoestservice), Kevin Hulsmans (Vastgoestservice) and Kenny Van Hummel (Androni) but nothing could stop Belkin, OPQS and Lotto Belisol that battled for position and set up the first bunch sprint of the race.

 

Boonen gets a chance to make it two in a row in tomorrow's second stage. The riders go up two famous hellingen in the first part but it is very unlikely that the stage won't end with a bunch sprint of the uphill finishing straight in Knokke-Heist.

MORE NEWS:

VIEW SELECTED

Giro d'Italia: The potential winners 04.05.2016 @ 08:00Four Days of Dunkirk preview 03.05.2016 @ 23:59Disappointed Wanty-Groupe Gobert sets sights on 2017 To... 03.05.2016 @ 22:18Bora-Argon 18 ready for first ever grand tour double 03.05.2016 @ 22:12The contenders speak on the eve of the Tour d'Azer... 03.05.2016 @ 22:10Caja Rural look forward to Carthy's grand tour deb... 03.05.2016 @ 22:07Nibali and Valverde ready for Giro d'Italia battle 03.05.2016 @ 22:03Giro d'Italia: The main challengers 03.05.2016 @ 21:00Uran leads Cannondale in the Giro d'Italia 03.05.2016 @ 19:53Giro d'Italia: The favourite 03.05.2016 @ 18:24Giro d'Italia route analysis 03.05.2016 @ 17:07Dimension Data with five African riders in the Giro d&#... 03.05.2016 @ 14:37Etixx-QuickStep with strong classics team in Dunkerque 03.05.2016 @ 14:28IAM with strong sprint team for the Giro d'Italia 03.05.2016 @ 14:24Lotto Soudal outline goals for the Giro d'Italia 03.05.2016 @ 14:19Landa leads strong Sky team at the Giro 03.05.2016 @ 14:14Finetto: In Italy, I am always a protagonist 03.05.2016 @ 12:30Teams announced for Vuelta a España 03.05.2016 @ 11:54Uran: My best chance to win the Giro 03.05.2016 @ 11:29Landa to spearhead a team in a grand tour for the first... 03.05.2016 @ 10:23Froome not concerned after Tour de Romandie 03.05.2016 @ 09:14Nibali fancies his chances at Giro d’Italia 03.05.2016 @ 08:17Stölting without sick Ciolek in Dunkerque 02.05.2016 @ 23:54Reactions from the final stage of the Vuelta Asturias 02.05.2016 @ 21:18Sagan and Costa to chase records at Tour de Suisse 02.05.2016 @ 19:49Strong Movistar team to support Valverde at the Giro 02.05.2016 @ 17:19Kruijswijk spearheads LottoNL-Jumbo at the Giro 02.05.2016 @ 16:28Kittel leads Etixx-QuickStep in the Giro d'Italia 02.05.2016 @ 16:20Moreno opens Movistar account, Carthy takes overall 02.05.2016 @ 14:45Majka leads Tinkoff at the Giro d'Italia 02.05.2016 @ 12:59Orica-GreenEDGE with Chaves and Ewan in the Giro 02.05.2016 @ 12:23Reactions from the final stage of the Tour de Yorkshire 02.05.2016 @ 00:39Reactions from stage 2 of Vuelta Asturias 02.05.2016 @ 00:36Reactions from Rund um den Finanzplatz 01.05.2016 @ 23:57Reactions from the final stage of the Tour of Turkey 01.05.2016 @ 23:35Reactions from the final stage of the Tour de Romandie 01.05.2016 @ 23:13No Gilbert in BMC team for the Giro d'Italia 01.05.2016 @ 20:56Betancur back on top with big win in Asturias 01.05.2016 @ 20:28Voeckler takes it all on final day in Yorkshire 01.05.2016 @ 19:50Dominant Kristoff makes it two in a row in German classic 01.05.2016 @ 18:51Mareczko wins final stage, Goncalves takes overall in T... 01.05.2016 @ 18:00Albasini and Quintana share the spoils on final day in... 01.05.2016 @ 16:35Giant-Alpecin interested in Boasson Hagen 01.05.2016 @ 14:15de Kort: Degenkolb will come good at the Tour 01.05.2016 @ 14:11Modolo: I am not inferior to the other Giro sprinters 01.05.2016 @ 14:05Roche targeting first Grand Tour triple 01.05.2016 @ 13:59Greipel: 2016 is the worst start to a season ever 01.05.2016 @ 13:49Rund um den Finanzplatz preview 01.05.2016 @ 13:42Van der Schueren: Gasparotto will stay with Wanty in 2017 01.05.2016 @ 11:35Reactions from stage 1 of the Vuelta Asturias 30.04.2016 @ 23:46Reactions from stage 2 of the Tour de Yorkshire 30.04.2016 @ 23:26Reactions from stage 7 of the Tour of Turkey 30.04.2016 @ 23:18Reactions from stage 4 of the Tour de Romandie 30.04.2016 @ 23:00Cancellara, Nizzolo and Hesjedal lead Trek at the Giro 30.04.2016 @ 20:18Tour de Romandie stage 5 preview 30.04.2016 @ 19:47

Danilo RODRIGUES
28 years | today
Mark OLIEMAN
28 years | today
Michele NAPOLI
29 years | today
Michel BIK
54 years | today
Ali AKSHBOUS
25 years | today

© CyclingQuotes.com 2013