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“In the end, Mathias Frank, Sébastien Reichenbach, and Jarlinson Pantano did a very good job. Mathias fell, but came away with just a few scratches, nothing serious."

Photo: IAM Cycling






26.04.2015 @ 20:38 Posted by Andy Pedersen

An encore for Alejandro Valverde (Movistar). Having already won the Flèche Wallonne four days ago, the Spanish rider emerged victorious at the end of the Liège-Bastogne-Liège, out-jumping Julian Alaphilippe (Etixx - Quick-Step) just as he had in Huy. The spring classics closed on wet roads and smattering of rain that marked La Doyenne. 


Though IAM Cycling was well represented in the early break with Clément Chevrier, the Swiss team again had more than its fair share of bad luck. The weather, capricious Belgian roads, and an even more aggressive race than usual, caused numerous crashes, including one Mathias Frank suffered, though he was not seriously injured.


At the time to take stock, Clément Chevrier could look back on his day with a feeling of satisfaction. 


“It’s good to see the race from the front,” Chevrier declared. “The moral was fairly low for me since I had crashed in Flèche Wallonne, and then did not finish. This morning before taking off, I asked Rik Verbrugghe if I could try to get in the break, I wanted to give it a go. In the end, I did manage to make it, but it took a lot of energy, of course. It was a good shot, though. I hoped we would be at the front at least until La Redoute, but behind Europcar was chasing hard, so we were never really given much rope, and that pretty much doomed our efforts.


"When I was back in the bunch, I helped to refuel our leaders, and then after that, my race was pretty much over. I’m leaving this race with no regret; I preferred to take the pleasure of being at the front rather than suffer the tempo at the back, and not really enjoy the race.”


IAM Cycling did have representatives in the top positions of the race for the majority of the day. Sébastien Reichenbach and Jarlinson Pantano once again proved their ability to fight with the best over the toughest courses. 


“We have not had much luck,” conceded Sébastien Reichenbach. “In the crash that took down Mathias Frank, I did not go down, fortunately for me, but I was delayed. It was necessary to work hard to catch back up, but I rejoined the group at the top of La Redoute. But then I was behind again on the Saint-Nicolas climb. I wasn’t missing much in order to able to finish right with the front leaders. I am a little disappointed; that’s normal. But it really gives me some confidence now that we are heading toward the Giro.”


Rik Verbrugghe, sports manager for IAM Cycling, who intimately knows the roads used by the pack on Sunday, can confirm the comments of his riders. 


“In the end, Mathias Frank, Sébastien Reichenbach, and Jarlinson Pantano did a very good job. Mathias fell, but came away with just a few scratches, nothing serious. Sébastien was somewhat hampered by the crash, and paid for his chasing efforts on the last climb, which is natural. Our Flèche Wallonne was a similar day to this, with crashes causing problems. We’re not looking for excuses, but without this bad luck, we could have been finishing with the best at the front of the race.”



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