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4J de Dunkerque

Thijssen takes his revenge and nearly takes the victory

It was a close call in the second stage of the Dunkirk Four Day (2.Pro) between Béthune and Maubeuge today as Gerben Thijssen nearly took his first professional victory at the and of the 181 kilometer stage suited for sprinters.

After his crash in the final 50 meter of the opening stage, the Belgian rider finished second in the bunch sprint in the streets of Maubeuge.

Just like the day before, the Belgian World Team took its responsibility behind the early breakaway and then neutralized the counterattacks in the peloton. Thijssen was guided towards the front by his teammates in the final kilometers and sprinted to second place on the line. 

The 23 year old sprinter took his first podium for Intermarché-Wanty-Goert Matériaux and currently sits in third place in the provisional general classification.

« Since the start of the Dunkirk Four Day, my teammates share the same goal: guide me towards the sprint as good as possible. That’s why, I say it since I joined the team, it is a dream to be a part of this team! They did a fantastic job by offering me an opportunity to sprint for the victory, just like yesterday, because several teams are here without a true sprinter and tried to hinder our plans by attacking from 70 kilometer before the finish. One by one, we followed all accelerations until a sprint was unavoidable. I was perfectly guided in the final kilometers thanks to the experience of Baptiste Planckaert and Boy van Poppel, who brought me to the first positions before the last corner. On the one hand it is a relief that I could sprint for the win again after yesterday’s crash. But it is of course a pity to be defeated by a small margin. We’re on a good way to convert our efforts in a victory! »


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