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Tour de Pologne

Impressive display of the team’s offensive mindset

The second stage of the Tour de Pologne (2.UWT, 9-15/8) between Zamość and Przemyśl exceeded the 200 kilometer mark. In his first race since his national championships in June, Taco van der Hoorn did what he does best. The Dutch rider joined the early breakaway of five riders from the start. The peloton didn’t trust the leaders and played a cat and mouse game with them. The advantage oscillated between 1 and 3 minutes. This offered three riders the possibility to bridge across with 90 kilometer to go. A trio of hills at the beginning of the final race hour offered the attackers the possibility to make the race hard. van der Hoorn’s teammates participated to the series of attacks when the Dutchman was caught. After attempts from Lorenzo Rota and Georg ZimmermannBiniam Girmay Hailu managed to lead the race for several kilometers. But in the end, a big group presented itself at the bottom of the 1.5 kilometer climb leading to the finish. Joao Almeida went from far and managed to resist to the return of his competitors. Lorenzo Rota also managed the steep climb well and crossed the line in 6th position. The Italian rider is now 7th in the provisional classification, 22 seconds behind the Portuguese rider. Thanks to a 16th place from Quinten Hermans and a 20th place from Biniam Girmay Hailu, the team was invited to the podium for the team prize.

This Wednesday, the longest stage of the Tour de Pologne is on the menu. The first race half of the 226 kilometer event with start in Sanok is a series of steep climbs, but the final 50 kilometer leading to the finish in Rzeszów are rather flat.

The final was demanding today, because one by one we all tried to attack. It was important to race offensively when Taco was caught, but unfortunately we were reeled in again. After excellent work from Pieter during the stage, the others helped me well in the final. We knew that the corner at the bottom of the final climb was crucial, and the guys positioned me well there. I lost the back wheels of my teammates, took some time to recover and gave all I had until the finish. I'm very happy about my condition and my result, because I was only defeated by champions. Tomorrow, we're expecting a sprint so I can do Biniam and Andrea a favor.

It was another nice day in the breakaway. After the attack of Pöstlberger, I tried to stay ahead so my teammates were in a comfortable position as long as possible. After the finish, I hoped to be invited to the podium for the intermediate sprint jersey but apparently I had equal points as another rider. This is an extra motivation to go in the break again the next days. Finally, thanks to the fantastic results of my teammates we were asked for the podium ceremony. It is very motivating to see my teammates battle for the stage wins. I'm happy to help the team in this Tour de Pologne and to spend some days in the breakaway. In this way, I'll progress towards my best shape after a long period without competition. You'll hear from me!


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