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"Because I was the winner of last year's edition, everybody, including myself, expected that I would repeat the trick. Plus, we really made a goal of it after De Panne as well, so I felt some pressure. But right from the start I fe...

Photo: Argos-Shimano

MARCEL KITTEL

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SCHELDEPRIJS VLAANDEREN

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03.04.2013 @ 19:56 Posted by Jesper Ralbjerg

Marcel Kittel (Argos-Shimano) was the strongest today in a chaotic sprint in the Scheldeprijs. With his speed he forced Mark Cavendish (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) into second place and Barry Markus (Vacansoleil-DCM) into third.


The day was animated by an early break. The bunch kept the break under control, and it was never a danger. As soon as the finale started, it was one big battle for the sprinters' teams to take control. In a sprint finale in which no single team was able to fully assert its authority Argos-Shimano did the best job and delivered their German sprinter to power across the finish line ahead of his major sprinter rivals.

"The guys did a really great job and made sure throughout the race that Marcel didn't waste too much energy. The whole race was good, and it was never a dangerous situation so almost everybody could save some energy for the sprint. It was incredible teamwork, especially in the final km," said Argos-Shimano sports manager Marc Reef.

Kittel, who also won the Scheldeprijs last year, felt some pressure before the start: "Because I was the winner of last year's edition, everybody, including myself, expected that I would repeat the trick. Plus, we really made a goal of it after De Panne as well, so I felt some pressure. But right from the start I felt pretty good and I had a lot of faith in a positive outcome. The guys helped me throughout the whole race to save my energy. In the end no team was able to do a very good leadout. I thought I was boxed in, but Tom Veelers found me and brought me back to the front and did the leadout perfectly. I started to sprint and thought somebody would pass me, but no one did and I took the victory!”

“I am super happy with this win, as the season has already had some ups and downs. After Paris-Nice I got sick and had the flu, and the Driedaagse De Panne, which was a big goal for me, didn't go well, as I was not in top shape. During that race I regained my form, though, and I was really focused on taking the win in the Scheldeprijs. This is absolutely great, but I have to say that without the teamwork we had today, I couldn't have done it.”

 

Result:
1 Marcel Kittel - Team Argos-Shimano
2 Mark Cavendish - Omega Pharma-Quick Step
3 Barry Markus - Vacansoleil-DCM
4 Andrea Guardini - Astana Pro Team
5 Alexander Kristoff - Katusha
6 Tyler Farrar - Garmin-Sharp
7 Kenny De Haes - Lotto Belisol
8 Theo Bos - Blanco Pro Cycling Team
9 Romain Feillu - Vacansoleil-DCM
10 Michael Van Staeyen - Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise

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