For the second day in a row, the Belkin sprint train proved that it is one of the very best in the business when the delivered Theo Bos perfectly near the front in today's second stage of the Tour of Turkey. However, mechanical issues for both Bos and his final lead-out man Graeme Brown hampered the sprint and the team had to settle for a disappointing 8th.
The Belkin Pro Cycling TEAM seemed to be on its way to yet another podium finish in Monday’s second stage of the Presidential Cycling Tour of Turkey, but in the final two kilometres things went wrong. In the bunch kick, which was won by Mark Cavendish (Omega Pharma-QuickStep), things didn’t go according to plan for sprinter Theo Bos. Eventually, the Dutchman placed eighth.
“When I shifted for the sprint, something went wrong, and I lost all my speed,” said Bos, who miscalculated his final jump due to the multiple lines under the finish arch. “I was a bit too early. It doesn’t bother me too much, however. Maybe I could have finished fifth instead of eighth. I’m happy I didn’t suffer from yesterday’s crash.”
The lead-out was almost flawless on Monday, just like the day before. Five kilometres from the line, the green and black train moved up in the wake of Rick Flens, and right until the sign of the final two kilometres, everything went smoothly.
“Then Jetse Bol and Dennis van Winden lost the four men behind them,” said Sports Director Michiel Elijzen. “Fortunately, the four were able to fix things and Barry Markus dropped off Graeme Brown and Theo Bos in a perfect position, but it was too bad that Graeme’s gear skipped when he started his move. It cost Theo, as he was on his own very soon. Above all, he suffered a mechanical as well. I’m not saying we would have won if that hadn’t happened – Cavendish is very strong – but we certainly could have done better. The train is well on track, now we have to bag a result.”
Elijzen wants his riders to save energy as much as possible Tuesday. The peloton tackles a mountain stage and that means that the Belkin Pro Cycling TEAM sprint train doesn’t need to run at full speed.
“Our focus is on the flat stages,” explained Elijzen. “It’s important to stay calm tomorrow. The guys should try to recover from the first two days, both physically and mentally.
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