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“I have to hand Mathieu a big compliment. Within our team, he’s really on top of things concerning time trialling. I feel like  the time trialist I once was. I dare to dream of a victory again thanks to Mathieu.” ...

Photo: Belkin Pro Cycling Team




08.08.2015 @ 21:59 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Rick Flens ensured that Team LottoNL-Jumbo will travel home with a laugh after the Tour de Pologne. The big man from Zaandam finished third in Saturday’s final stage time trial. He completed the 24-kilometre course in 29.43. Flens was 58 seconds slower than winner Marcin Bialoblocki of One Pro Cycling.


“This is really great,” Flens said immediately after the trial. “After my second place in the National Championships, my confidence has grown a lot, but this, I did not expect. I really suffered over the last few days, but I think it has done me well.”


Flens was the third rider to roll off the start ramp in the middle of day.


“It was around 35 degrees at the time and towards the evening it cooled down, but I don’t know if it was an advantage or a disadvantage. I followed the remainder of the race in the bus. At one point, I started believing in a top five, but none of the late starters was able to beat my time, which was fantastic.”



Flens, who recorded his only individual professional victory in 2007 in a time trial in the Tour of Denmark, acknowledged performance coach Mathieu Heijboer afterwards.


“I have to hand Mathieu a big compliment. Within our team, he’s really on top of things concerning time trialling. I feel like  the time trialist I once was. I dare to dream of a victory again thanks to Mathieu.”



Heijboer in turn, was impressed by Flens’ performance.


“A third place in a World Tour race is very good. As a team we have approached this last day very seriously. Right after yesterday’s stage we started working towards today. All of us, including the mechanics and the soigneurs, worked hard to end the week in good fashion. Rick is heading in the right direction at the moment and he told me that he wants to ride as many time trials as possible, as he knows that he’s able to bag a good result.”


Flens and Martijn Keizer rode with Pro’s new three-spoke wheel in their Bianchi Aquila CV on Saturday.


“That creates extra motivation a well,” Heijboer concluded.



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