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Omloop van het Houtland

Taco van der Hoorn masterclass & double for IWG

Third in the last edition of the Omloop van het Houtland (1.1, 23/09) in 2019, Taco van der Hoorn returned to West Flanders this Thursday with the bit between his teeth. The 27 year-old, who has distinguished himself many times this season in breakaways, has repeated the feat impressively in the streets of Lichteverlede during this 74th edition.

Taco van der Hoorn first perfectly avoided the trap caused by echelons as the field split into four on the 95-kilometer ride from Middelkerke to the local circuit of Lichteverlede. Along with Jonas Rickaert (Alpecin), van der Hoorn broke away from a group of 37 riders shortly before the start of the eight laps, however they enjoyed a narrow maximum lead of just over a minute.

As both men were about to get caught on the penultimate lap, van der Hoorn refused to abdicate and took off again in a solo effort. Maneuvering with a handful of seconds with 10 kilometers from the finish, the Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux rider brilliantly timed his effort, taking advantage of Van Keirsbulck (Alpecin) who had joined him in the last lap, to once again go on his own.

After a final solo in the streets of Lichtervelde, Taco van der Hoorn resisted the return of the peloton and claimed his third victory this season. Second place went to his teammate Danny van Poppel, winner of the peloton’s sprint ahead of Gerben Thijssen who thus concluded a stellar team performance from the team led by Hilaire Van der Schueren and Steven De Neef.

« I'm very proud of my third win of the season, the eighth for the team! When you are a sprinter or a true climber, it is possible to collect wins, but for a rider with my profile it is much more difficult. It allows me to enjoy this kind of moment even more so! Once again, I received no favors because Jonas Rickaert and I had to fight hard for 80 kilometers to stay ahead. Our energy tank was drained in the final phase, but luckily I was able to rely on Van Keirsbulck's contribution on the last lap. We had to be tactically on point, because in the peloton my teammate Danny van Poppel was the fastest on paper. In a slightly uphill section with a headwind, I managed to get rid of Van Keirsbulck, then I took advantage of the last technical kilometers to leave the peloton behind me! »

« It was a risky bet in the final, because although we know what Taco is capable of, it wouldn't have been illogical for Van Keirsbulck to gain the upper hand due to his freshness. Once again, I am in awe of Taco's performance! In the peloton, we waited patiently before my brother Boy propelled me in the last hundred meters. Our sprint train mastered to perfection, so that I could sprint from afar and get second place. By taking the first two places on the podium, we marked a fantastic day for the team! »

General Classification


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