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“I’m disappointed, my legs were perfectly fine. There could have been more in it for me, I was one of the best riders in the race. I cannot blame myself, though. The headwind and the fact that nobody wanted to race, made ​​...

Photo: Sirotti

BRAM TANKINK

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JOS VAN EMDEN

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PARIS - ROUBAIX

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NEWS

SEP VANMARCKE

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TEAM JUMBO-VISMA

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NEWS
13.04.2014 @ 20:39 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Sep Vanmarcke (Belkin) was maybe the strongest rider in today's Paris-Roubaix as he put in several strong accelerations at the key points of the race but whenever he created a selection, things came back together as he received little help from his rivals. Despite finishing fourth in the race, the Belgian was disappointed with the outcome as he felt that he had the legs for more and lamented the lack of aggressiveness from his competitors.

 

Sep Vanmarcke finished fourth in Paris-Roubaix today. Niki Terpstra (Omega Pharma-QuickStep) won the 112th edition of the Hell of the North solo. Behind, Belkin Pro Cycling TEAM’s Belgian placed third in the sprint after John Degenkolb (Giant - Shimano) and Fabian Cancellara (Trek Factory Racing). 

“I’m disappointed, my legs were perfectly fine,” said Vanmarcke afterwards. “There could have been more in it for me, I was one of the best riders in the race.

“I cannot blame myself, though. The headwind and the fact that nobody wanted to race, made ​​it hard to win. When Terpstra attacked and took a fifteen-metre lead, I knew enough. The others hesitated and I didn’t want to respond again, as I had done that a few times before.” 

 

The rest of the Belkin Pro Cycling TEAM also managed to reach the finish in the Roubaix’s velodrome. Vanmarcke said that he was happy with the way the team worked together. In almost every move that mattered, a Belkin Pro Cycling TEAM rider was involved. Until very late in the race, five riders in green and black were still at the front.

 

“The team was very strong today,” said Vanmarcke. “We did what we had to do and attacked at the right times. Unfortunately we weren’t rewarded.”

 

Vanmarcke missed winning a big race this spring despite numerous top finishes. The Belgian ended up in the top five in Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne, E3-Harelbeke, Gent-Wevelgem, the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix. 

 

“Every race I was there, but in the end I’m standing here empty-handed,” said Vanmarcke. “I really wanted to win that big race. Besides that, I finished just outside the top three a few times, while I had the feeling that I could have been on the podium.” 

Jos van Emden placed 18th today. The Dutchman moved mountains for his leaders and eventually felt so strong that he was able to take a top result himself. 

“I’m very happy, although I could have ended up a little higher as I was part of a group that sprinted for the 12th place. Along the way – when I was getting energy bars for Lars – I narrowly escaped a crash. A rider bumped into me while we were going fifty kilometres per hour, but luckily I was able to stay on my bike.” 

 

Bram Tankink was part of a leading group for a long time, but had to settle for 26th.

 

“Except for my crash, things went great. Fortunately, the crash didn’t cause any major damage. I was able to continue and started attacking right away, but I think that’s why I was short of energy in the end of the race.” 

 

Boom was in a favourable position until a crash in the final twenty kilometres. He ended up 37th.

 

“I crashed when I was giving my all to keep Cancellara’s wheel. My wheel slipped away because of some dirt in a turn. I wasn’t able to jump back on my bike and chase right away, as my chain fell off. After the spill, my adrenaline level dropped, which made me feel all the pain in my legs.” 

 

Maarten Wynants, Maarten Tjallingii and Robert Wagner suffered mechanicals at crucial moments and finished 39th, 51st and 77th. Tom Leezer worked hard to chase down the early leaders and arrived at the line in 85th position. 

 

Sports Director Nico Verhoeven sat down in the team bus after the race with mixed feelings.

 

“We controlled the race for a long time and out-numbered our rivals, but at the crucial moment we couldn’t profit from it. We worked hard for each other, but in the end it’s was only Sep who was involved in the final. That was a disappointment. But this was a fair fight, everyone had their share of bad luck.” 

Looking back on the first part of the spring season, Verhoeven said,

 

“We have proven to be very strong and dominant when we have a united goal. We can build on that, although it’s a pity that we missed out on that big win.”

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