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"Then I had to go early in the sprint, with 300 meters to go. I am disappointed because I had the feeling that I could win again today.

Photo: Trek Factory Racing

DANNY VAN POPPEL

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NEWS

TOUR DE WALLONIE 

RACE PROFILE
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NEWS
28.07.2015 @ 21:10 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Although he could not match his victory in stage two, Danny van Poppel’s third place in the 162-kilometer stage four at the Tour de Wallonie retained his lead in the points classification.

 

The race played out under more favorable weather than yesterday and it all ended with the expected bunch sprint. Jonas Van Genechten (IAM Cycling) was first across the line, ahead of Michael Morkov (Tinkoff-Saxo) and Danny van Poppel respectively.

 

Trek Factory Racing is down to four riders, making it impossible to take control in a frenetic sprint finale, but the three teammates were able to rally around van Poppel and lead him into the final kilometer. It was perfect cohesion until van Poppel lost contact, jeopardizing a higher finish.

 

Director Dirk Demol explained the race: “As expected a four-rider break went early but was well controlled by the peloton and never gained more than three minutes. It was a windy day, but we only had rain at the beginning and then it was dry for 120kms.

 

“We are down to four so there’s not much we can do. But to be honest we were well organized with Popo [Popovcych], Fabio [Felline], Boy [van Poppel] then Danny, but he lost their wheels before 500 meters to go and had to come back from far. If he could have stayed with the three riders maybe we could have more.”

 

 

Danny van Poppel agreed: “Only three teammates so it’s difficult to do a good sprint. We lost each other and I only had the wheel of Boy, but then lost his wheel too. Then I had to go early in the sprint, with 300 meters to go. I am disappointed because I had the feeling that I could win again today.

 

“I want to win. It’s difficult when you know you can and then don’t…but  the third place is still a good result and I am okay with it now.”

 

The five-day race ends tomorrow with a 167-kilometer stage that has another tricky rising road to the finish line where the on-form Danny van Poppel will have one last chance to match his stage two victory. Niki Terpstra (Etixx-Quick Step) continues to lead the race by 16 seconds after taking the leader's jersey with his win on the first stage.

 

“Tomorrow the finish is a slight uphill like GP Cerami and normally I am good in them.  But Philippe Gilbert is also here. We will try again tomorrow, but it will not be easy.”determined van Poppel. 

 

One week ago Philippe Gilbert (BMC) won the uphill finish in GP Cerami ahead of Danny van Poppel. On Wednesday, Trek Factory Racing will hope that Danny can turn the tables and come out on top of one of the best uphill finishers in the peloton.

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