We start as the racing began to kick off, which in these semi-classics is usually around 40km or 1 hour of racing remaining. We were immediately treated to Yorkshireman and World-Tour debutant Tom Pidcock [Ineos-Grenadiers] pulling a monstrously strong turn to rapidly close the gap, solo, from the peloton to the late breakaway. This late break as it usually does in classics, contained all the main protagonists who were the favourites for the win. The escape included, naturally, three Deceuninck-Quickstep riders in the form of the brilliant Julian Alaphilippe, Davide Ballerini, and Zdenek Stybar. Have we already mentioned Tom Pidcock. Continue reading “Omloop Het Nieuwsblad”
Another scorcher of a day, not least because of the intense rivalry that will undoubtedly be shown on the final 10 km climb, up to Jebel Hafeet. Pogacar was leading overall but by only a handful of seconds, could the reigning Le Tour champion be matched in this final early season test. I say final early season test because it’s FINALLY opening weekend in 4 days’ time. I for sure cannot wait for Omloop Het Nieuwsblad and Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne. Have I mentioned the UAE Tour is a slightly dull affair? Yeah? Well I said it again for good measure.
Todays’ stage put the riders and their expensive, rapid bikes against the clock. So yeah it was set to be a mundane day on the couch, watching and waiting for one man to roll down the ramp, and indefinitely win. Before we get into the details of the stage the main headline was that Alpecin-Fenix had to withdraw all seven riders from the race. Unfortunately, Mathieu Van Der Poel was forced out of any, far-fetched chance of winning the overall. The reason for their withdrawal was due to a staff member testing positive for Covid-19. A mere 12 months after the UAE tour produced cycling’s first positive cases.
Believe it or not this was my first time in Gran Canaria actually riding a bike for the majority of the trip. We had planned to do it around 7 years ago but I was too young and the hills were far too steep for me to be riding every day. However, being older and stronger now than I was then, I was excited to get this training period under way and get some solid training in the bag for the 2020 season with Urbano Cycling Team! Continue reading “Let’s Get 2020 Started!!”
Over the early months of 2019, we, as team Spiderking Soenens have been going to team training camps in both Belgium and Netherlands to get some race pace in the legs before the much awaited classics which come in just a few weeks’ time. There have been 3 team weekends: Waregem, Geraardsbergen and Assen. Unfortunately, but understandably, I could not go to the training camp in Assen due to the vast travelling distance, and not to mention the time required out of school to ensure I travel from Great Britain to Assen, Netherlands. We made a collective decision to forego the training weekend deciding that it would be more beneficial for me to train at home.