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Brussels Cycling Classic

Taco van der Hoorn wins thanks to a stunt in the breakaway

Once more, Taco van der Hoorn showed his perseverance in the Brussels Cycling Classic (1.Pro) and took the victory at the end of a breakaway of 185 kilometer.

The Dutch rider joined the decisive breakaway in the beginning of the race, accompanied by nine other riders. These escapees grew their advantage to 8 minutes in the first race half, until  the peloton accelerated in the Flemish Ardennes. 

A double passage of the Muur van Geraardsbergen, the Bosberg and the Congoberg had to be accomplished in the second half of the 200 kilometer race. The teammates of Taco van der Hoorn raced attentively, neutralized several counterattacks and started the hills in a good position. 

At the end of this double loop, with 40 kilometer to go, the group of Taco van der Hoorn rode 2 minutes ahead of a peloton of 30 units. While Aimé De Gendt and Alexander Kristoff were present in this group, Quinten Hermans and Loïc Vliegen were forced to abandon after a crash.

An exciting pursuit took place in the final race hour, with the gap decreasing under 1 minute at 10 kilometer before the end. Finally, the escapees won the battle against the peloton and Taco van der Hoorn was the first to attack under the red flag. 

As he was countered by Thimo Willems and Tobias Bayer, the Dutchman pushed on the pedals  to close the gap to his competitors and to pass first named 50 meter before the finish line. In this way, van der Hoorn took his first victory of the season, thirteenth of the team in 2022.

« I returned into competition today after a rest period and an altitude camp with the team in Andorra, aiming to help my teammates to the victory today. I felt quite good in the early breakaway and we accelerated quite early hoping to start the Muur van Geraardsbergen with a nice advantage. But I insisted on the importance of staying together and not go too hard on the climbs. » « When returning back to Brussels, we thought well about our strategy for the final. I wasn't completely convinced that I could finish it off in this large breakaway and in the peloton we had an excellent option with Alexander Kristoff. In the end, we chose to fully cooperate in the breakaway and to establish a plan to eliminate the fastest riders in the breakaway. I accelerated in the last corner hoping to create a gap and that’s what happened as only Thobias Bayer and Thimo Willems followed me. I was completely empty when Thimo attacked, but in the end I managed to dig deep to pass him just before the finish line. The Brussels Cycling Classic is a nice race on my palmares and I’m happy that I can confirm with a victory! »


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