Team News – Kwiatkowski OK after San Remo Crash


Fourth for World Champion Michal Kwiatkowski in Dwars door Vlaanderen proof the boyd’s fine after crash in Milan San Remo

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Team News – Kwiatkowski OK after San Remo Crash

Dwars Door Vlaanderen
Jelle Wallays (Topspoort Vlaanderen – Baloise) won 200.2km Dwars door Vlaanderen on Wednesday, taking advantage of teammate Edward Theuns in the four-man escape group that stayed away until the finish line, and included Etixx – Quick-Step rider Michal Kwiatkowski.

Theuns was 2nd, and Tour of Britain winner Dylan Van Baarle (Cannondale-Garmin)3rd. Kwiatkowski crossed in 4th.

Theuns, Kwiatkowski, and Van Baarle bridged to Wallays with 54.2km to go after he attacked an eight rider break and another rider who bridged to it, on the Eikenberg. Etixx – Quick-Step worked hard on the front to reduce that escape group’s advantage to less than 12 seconds before Wallays made his move. Only one rider from his group could stay with Wallays, but eventually he was solo before the Kwiatkowski group joined him ahead.

The four riders stayed away thanks to a considerable amount of work by Kwiatkowski, as well as good collaboration in the final kilometrrs. Guillaume Van Keirsbulck and Nikolas Maes were in an 11-rider chase group behind that reduced the advantage of the four leaders to 29″ with 12.6km to go. Van Keirsbulck and Maes did their best to not contribute to the chase in hopes the UCI World Road Champion could stay away with his breakaway companions.

Wallays attacked at about the 1km to go mark, and went on to win the race solo. “First of all I am happy to say I am doing OK after my crash at Milano-Sanremo,” Kwiatkowski said afterwards.

“As you can see, I felt good at this race. When I went away, I thought maybe a bigger group would eventually catch up to us, maybe on the Oude Kwaremont or something, but they never came. So it came down to a sprint with four guys. It was a difficult final”.

“With Wallays attacking and Theuns being his teammate, he wasn’t going to chase him down. The collaboration maybe wasn’t there with the rest of us that was necessary to close the gap. I also used some energy in the previous kilometers to keep our advantage before the sprint”.

“I tried to win it today, but in the end Wallays took advantage of his situation and he deserved the victory. But I have to say, my teammates did a great job today on the front. It wasn’t so easy to control this race and they did a great job”.

“As for me, I am happy about my condition and to be riding again on the Belgian hellingen like the Paterberg and the Kwaremont, as well as the cobbles. I loved hearing the support of the Flemish public on the roads. Everything is going well in anticipation of my next appointment, Vuelta Ciclista al Pais Vasco, and I am looking forward to the next races.”
Volta Ciclista a Catalunya: Uran 2nd
Etixx – Quick-Step rider Rigoberto Uran finished 2nd at 156.6km Volta Ciclista a Catalunya Stage 3 on Wednesday, as an elite group of seven riders formed on the Cat. 1 climb Alt dels Angels, the final categorized climb of the stage.

The group included Uran, Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo), Domenico Pozzovivo (AG2R – La Mondiale), teammates Daniel Martin and Andrew Talansky (Cannondale-Garmin), Fabio Aru (Astana), and Richie Porte (Team Sky). Talansky and Martin were able to bridge back to the group shortly after the top of the final climb.

Pozzovivo (AGR2 – La Mondiale) took advantage of the group’s momentary hesitation, and he attacked with 2km to go and went on to win solo. Martin was 3rd alongside Uran in the sprint behind for the final podium placements.

The group was also trying to put time into GC riders caught in groups behind. Pierre Rolland (Europcar) takes over the race lead 1’08” ahead of Maciej Paterski (CCC Sprandi Polkowice) and 1’16” ahead of Bart De Clerq (Lotto Soudal). Pozzovivo is now 4th, and Uran 5th in the overall.

Pieter Serry crashed and was taken to the hospital for further examinations.

Etixx – Quick-Step looks next to 188.4km Stage 4, from Tona to a Category 1 La Molina summit finale. “Today we finished with seven riders, but to be honest I was aiming for the victory,” Uran said. “I was positioning myself in preparation to win the stage, but when Pozzovivo attacked no one wanted to react. After Martin and Talansky, two teammates, came back to the group we were focused on the tactics”.

“Everyone was there looking at each other and Pozzovivo took advantage to win the race. I did my sprint and I was 2nd. It’s another 2nd place after my 2nd at the 4th Stage of Tirreno – Adriatico. These results show I am in good condition, but today I was really hoping to go for the stage win. Considering the overall classification, I am happy because on the climb I responded to the attacks from riders like Contador and Porte, and I felt good. I am happy about my performance and my feeling in the mountains”.

“Tomorrow is probably the hardest stage with an uphill finish. It’s a difficult stage, and we will see what can happen tomorrow. Of course I have a good team around me, so we will do the best we can to defend our GC position and maybe try to do something more for the stage. A few riders crashed today on the downhill and unfortunately Pieter Serry was one of them. I hope it is not too serious. It is a pity for him and the team that he cannot be at the start tomorrow and we wish him the best. “

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