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"After De Panne and Tirreno, I was very disappointed, because I had really good legs but I couldn’t manage to win a race. That gave me a lot of motivation to give everything and do my best today," Kittel says







09.04.2014 @ 20:31 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Marcel Kittel (Giant-Shimano) may have made history in today's Scheldeprijs by becoming the first rider to win the race three times in a row but what really pleased him was to have ended his long drought. Having not won a race since the Dubai Tour, the German finally got his first European win after a number of disappointments in Tirreno-Adriatico and the Three Days of De Panne.


Marcel Kittel has taken his third win in a row at Scheldeprijs today, asserting his dominance on this sprinters classic.


Having targeted this race for a while, the team set about executing the plan of protecting Kittel and riding for a bunch sprint. Everything worked to plan and Kittel jumped with just over 200m to go to take a superb victory, the third of the day so far for Team Giant-Shimano.


Kittel was all smiles after the win, saying:


“It really means a lot for me to win here for the third time, especially after a superb job by my teammates.


“I knew that I could go early at the end as we had a tailwind. My plan was to jump 280m from the line and after perfect preparation for the sprint this was made possible.


“We showed today that we are one of the top teams – we stayed calm and finished the job perfectly. I’m really happy.


"It’s actually some time since I won a race and for me it is a very important win. Not only so that I could defend the title for the third time, but in general to win a race.


"After De Panne and Tirreno, I was very disappointed, because I had really good legs but I couldn’t manage to win a race. That gave me a lot of motivation to give everything and do my best today.


"I’m feeling very good, not just the legs but with the whole team now. I could simply start my sprint from a very good position and use my legs to sprint as hard as I could."


Asked about the absence of Mark Cavendish, he said:


"I always have the expectation for myself, to be in the race and to win and it’s not that I’m afraid of anyone. We as a team and my team don’t have to be afraid of anyone.


"It’s always nice if you have the best guys around you, which doesn’t mean that there wasn’t a good rider today. I think it’s good to have all the best guys together.


"A lot of people call it the unofficial sprint world championships, maybe just without the jersey. It’s a very important race for a sprinter, because all the good sprinters have won here before. I think the reputation of the race is very big and you can profile yourself as a team and a rider if you show yourself here."


Team Giant-Shimano coach Aike Visbeek said when back on the team bus:


“Everyone was so motivated to make it three from three today here.


“From the start everyone was really sharp and we knew that we had to stay in control behind the break. The teamwork was spot on again here even when it was a bit of a showdown against the other lead-outs  but the guys got Marcel where he needed to be.


“When Marcel is in the shape he is and can really sprint he is the fastest and he showed that today.”



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