Three days of DePanne – Van Keirsbulck wins overall


5th in the final time trial helped Guillaume Van Keirsbulck clinch the overall in De Panne after two split stages won by Modolo and Bodnar

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 Three days of DePanne – Van Keirsbulck wins overall

The final day of the Three Days of De Panne saw two split stages and it was the final one of these, the time trial, that decided the general classification. Omega Pharma – Quick-Step came into the day leading the race with Gert Steegmans and came out of it still leading but with a different rider, Van Keirsbulck


Final podium for De Panne, Luke Durbridge,  Van Keirsbulck and Steegmans. Photo: OPQS/Tim De Waele

The day began with stage 3A, a 70 mile early morning stage that ended in chaos with a mamoth crash and sprint won by Sacha Modolo, who won his second stage. The Italian sprinter was 5th at the final corner before starting his sprint on the left side of the road, overtaking his rivals and crossing the finish line before Guardini, Van Hummel and Van Bilsen.

It was the 6th win for Modolo 2014 and the ninth one for his team, Lampre Merida. In the big crashm Andy Fenn and that was his tour over.

Afternoon Test
In the afternoon was a short time trial (14k) were the fight for the GC came down to four riders on course at the same time: Omega Pharma – Quick-Step’s Niki Terpstra, Guillaume Van Keirsbulck, and the race leader Gert Steegmans against ORICA-GreenEDGE rider Luke Durbridge.

Van Keirsbulck emerged as the overall winner thanks to an impressive top 5 finish in the stage. He placed 5th with a time of 18’02”. Gert Steegmans rounded out the GC podium, finishing with a time of 18’19” in the stage.

The day, however, did not go perfectly for OPQS. Niki Terpstra had a problem with a small broken piece of his left pedal when he left the start house, which left him unable to clip back in and push 100 percent — especially accelerating after the corners — for the rest of the race.


Van-Keirsbulck. Photo: OPQS/Tim De Waele

Terpstra was unable to contest the stage or the overall, but despite the mechanical problem he finished 4th in the GC with an 18’21” stage finishing time.

Maciej Bodnar (POL) won the stage (17’51”) by 3″ over Jan Barta (Team NetApp-Endura) and 6″ over David Boucher ( “I’m really proud of this victory” said Maciej Bodnar of Cannondale “… and also a little surprised. For a rider like me, it’s not usual to stand on the highest step of the podium, and when happens it’s always awesome.”

“We’re in Belgium to help Sagan, and we’re happy to do this, but in De Panne we had a chance to search some personal glory and I took it. Doing a good performance was my aim since the beginning of the race. I had really good feeling since the first moment of today’s stage.”

“And when you feel your legs pushing hard, you become more and more confident. This win is also the result hard work on this speciality. You can’t invent something out of nothing. I’ve been working since the winter with our coaches, doing dedicated training and working on positioning and aerodynamics. This is the outcome.”

“I wish I could have a toast with my teammates, but tomorrow morning we have to focus on a new goal. The Ronde Van Vlaanderen is coming, and we want to do the best we can to carry Peter to the win. How we performed during the week, and our attitude at each stage shows we have very good condition. We have to chase this dream,” added Bodnar.

Super Happy says Van Keirsbulck
“I came here with the goal to work hard and try to win a stage,” Gert Steegmans said. “Then I ended up with the leader jersey, so at that point I did the TT full gas. But it’s nice to be beaten by Guillaume. It would have been even nicer if we could have done 1-2-3 with Niki. But despite the bad luck of Niki, we’re happy about the win. Guillaume deserves the victory as he is riding really well.”

“I’m super happy,” Van Keirsbulck said. “It’s something unexpected. In the team we had really strong riders like Steegmans and Terpstra, so I wasn’t really thinking about the classification.”

“But today I said to myself to try 100 percent and see what could have happened. At the end of the race I was at the team bus and they called me to go to the podium. It was a great feeling. Rik van Slycke really pushed me a lot during the race. He told me that I was fighting for the GC, so I really gave everything. I’m super happy, really.”

“I rode Sunday at Gent-Wevelgem, It wasn’t in my schedule originally, but now I’m happy to have done it. It gave me a good feeling on my condition and the right race rhythm. I can consider this the most important victory of my career.”

“I think that I developed the base for this season starting last year at La Vuelta. That was my first big tour. Since that moment I feel stronger, even if I know that I have to work really hard to even improve. I also solved my problem with the back that was present during my winter training. Now I’m happy and I can enjoy this moment.”

Orica – GreenEdge – Mission Accomplished – Luke Durbridge Podiums
ORICA-GreenEDGE’s Luke Durbridge had previously finished in seventh place twice at VDK-Driedaagse De Panne-Koksijde. Ninth following stage two, Durbridge jumped up to seventh overall, 20” outside the race lead by the end of the morning stage on day three.

In the afternoon time trial, Durbridge clawed his way onto the overall podium. “This is my third year at De Panne, and I’ve finally cracked the podium,” said Durbridge. “I’m in the Quickstep sandwich. I’m pretty happy to say the least. The goal was to jump on the podium. There are a couple little things – if I had just gotten onto that group on stage one….”

“The team rode super for me all week,” Durbridge added. “I couldn’t ask for anything more from them. I’m glad to repay them with the podium. Hopefully next year, I can come back and get on the top step, but for now, I’m just going to enjoy being on the podium.”

Talking about the morning stage, Durbridge said “This is one of the most dangerous stages of the year,” said Durbridge. “It’s just 100 kilometres of flat stick with everyone trying to move up and stay in position for no particular reason. The boys did great work to keep me out of the wind and away from the danger. I just had to stay in the front and not lose any time. That was the tactic.”

Stage 3A
1 MODOLO Sacha Lampre – Merida 02:22:20
2 GUARDINI Andrea Astana Pro Team
3 VAN HUMMEL Kenny Androni Giocattoli – Venezuela
4 VANBILSEN Kenneth Topsport Vlaanderen – Baloise
5 MATZKA Ralf Team NetApp – Endura
6 VAN STAEYEN Michael Topsport Vlaanderen – Baloise
7 RUFFONI Nicola Bardiani – CSF
8 KRISTOFF Alexander Team Katusha
9 CHICCHI Francesco Neri Sottoli
10 REGUIGUI Youcef MTN – Qhubeka

29 STEEGMANS Gert Omega Pharma – Quick-Step
31 DURBRIDGE Luke Orica GreenEDGE
35 TERPSTRA Niki Omega Pharma – Quick-Step
46 BARTA Jan Team NetApp – Endura
56 THWAITES Scott Team NetApp – Endura
71 RENSHAW Mark Omega Pharma – Quick-Step 00:16

DNF FENN Andrew Omega Pharma – Quick-Step

Stage 3b – TT
1 BODNAR Maciej Cannondale 17:51
2 BARTA Jan Team NetApp – Endura 00:03
3 BOUCHER David 00:06
4 DURBRIDGE Luke Orica GreenEDGE 00:07
5 VAN KEIRSBULCK Guillaume Omega Pharma – Quick-Step 00:11
6 KITTEL Marcel Team Giant-Shimano 00:13
7 KOREN Kristjan Cannondale 00:14
8 LE BON Johan 00:16
9 CORDEEL Sander Vastgoedservice – Golden Palace
10 RUIJGH Rob Vastgoedservice – Golden Palace 00:25

13 TUFT Svein Orica GreenEDGE
15 HEPBURN Michael Orica GreenEDGE
16 KRISTOFF Alexander Team Katusha
17 STEEGMANS Gert Omega Pharma – Quick-Step
19 TERPSTRA Niki Omega Pharma – Quick-Step
45 RENSHAW Mark Omega Pharma – Quick-Step 01:10
55 LIGTHART Pim Lotto Belisol 01:37
56 MODOLO Sacha Lampre – Merida
70 THWAITES Scott Team NetApp – Endura 01:53

1 VAN KEIRSBULCK Guillaume Omega Pharma – Quick-Step 11:38:16
2 DURBRIDGE Luke Orica GreenEDGE 00:07
3 STEEGMANS Gert Omega Pharma – Quick-Step 00:08
4 TERPSTRA Niki Omega Pharma – Quick-Step 00:15
5 KITTEL Marcel Team Giant-Shimano 00:21
6 JEROME Vincent Team Europcar 00:25
7 FINETTO Mauro Neri Sottoli 00:27
8 KRISTOFF Alexander Team Katusha 00:32
9 RUIJGH Rob Vastgoedservice – Golden Palace 00:33
10 PORSEV Alexander Team Katusha

27 BARTA Jan Team NetApp – Endura 03:28
43 RENSHAW Mark Omega Pharma – Quick-Step 04:35 18:08
94 THWAITES Scott Team NetApp – Endura 18:09


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