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"We came here with good ambitions to make a good GC and it seems that after today this may be over. We have five more days to go and we will change tactics - we will go for stage wins."

Photo: Trek Factory Racing

BENELUX TOUR

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BOY VAN POPPEL

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FABIAN CANCELLARA

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GIACOMO NIZZOLO

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STIJN DEVOLDER

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TREK - SEGAFREDO

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12.08.2014 @ 19:09 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Trek had gone intot the Eneco Tour with the plan to contest the GC with Stijn Devolder and Jesse Sergent but both riders missed the splits and lost time in today's chaotic second stage. Frustrated by his team's lack of attentiveness, sports director Dirk Demol now says that their GC campaign is over.

 

For the second straight day the rain, wind and road furniture caused mayhem in the peloton. The 175.8-kilometers stage two, again raced in the Netherlands, developed into a tumultuous finale as rain pounded and the last relic of the day’s breakaway threatened to pull off a shocking win.

 

The high-speed chase was on: Mach speed on wet roads making a dicey ending where positioning and fearlessness became decisive factors.

 

The solo rider, Pavel Brutt (Katusha), was caught, but an inevitable crash caused the peloton to split with around 25 riders ahead of the rest of the bunch.  Unfortunately, Trek Factory Racing was on the wrong side of the separation.

 

“It was a bad day for us," sports director Dirk Demol said. "A couple guys we had in mind for the GC, like Stijn [Devolder] for example, lost time today. It was again bad weather; narrow roads to bigger roads, back to narrow roads. We did not crash today, but we were caught behind the crash when Trentin (OPQS) went down at 10k to go. They had to brake and lost all their position: Stijn was behind, Giacomo [Nizzolo] was behind and Boy [van Poppel] was behind.

 

Most of the peloton’s fast men also missed the boat and the sprinters’ teams no longer had control; it was a free-for-all finish. Attack upon attack launched from the leading group in the final four kilometers, resulting in more fissures forming and a small group emerging with a slight gap under the last kilometer red kite.

 

It was little surprise that some of the Classics’ specialists surfaced in the last kilometers to battle the treacherous finale. In the end it was Zdenek Sybar (OPQS) sprinting to the win ahead of Team Belkin duo Lars Boom and Sep Vanmarcke.  Defending champion Sybar also moved into the overall lead.

 

Trek Factory Racing ended the day with its chances at the overall classification stained.  Eugenio Alafaci was the highest finisher in 25th place (+06”), with Fabian Cancellara and Danilo Hondo arriving with a group a few seconds later (+14”).

 

“It was very chaotic, and at certain times I did not know where the team was with all the splits happening," Demol said. "But I am very disappointed we have no result today. The performance today was subpar.

 

"We came here with good ambitions to make a good GC and it seems that after today this may be over. We have five more days to go and we will change tactics - we will go for stage wins.

 

"It’s a hard parcours and it was nervous the whole day, but this is the same for everyone. We needed to be more aggressive to fight for the first 15 positions. The crash threw us completely out of the top organization and in the end we have no result at all.”

 

Tomorrow is the sole time trial of the weeklong race, a brief 9.6-kilometer teaser that may be too short to have any real impact on the overall GC.  However, it may be a chance for Trek Factory Racing to make amends for a less than stellar second day.

 

“Tomorrow is a bit short for specialists like Fabian and Jesse, but anyway we will give it a go," Demol said. "We have to!  We will make the best of it.”

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