the decisive break with Niki Terpstra (NLD/Etixx-QuickStep) & Alexander Kristoff (NOR/Katusha) escaping from the lead group up the Hotond berg

99th Ronde van Vlaanderen 2015

Daily News Digest

by Matt de Neef

April 1, 2016


In today’s edition of the CT Daily News Digest: Lieuwe Westra wins Three Days of De Panne, Kittel and Bodnar victorious on final day of racing; Demoitie autopsy can’t confirm moto was cause of death; Shimano targets entry-level bikes with hydraulic disc brakes for its Tiagra groupset; Criterium du Dauphine organisers reveal 2016 course, including brutal uphill prologue; Andre Greipel still struggling with rib injury, unlikely to be as aggressive as normal at Flanders; Woman charged over alleged hit-and-run near Ballarat; Riders come to blows at Three Days of De Panne; Tony Martin’s transformation into a Classics rider; Sep Vanmarcke – A New Start.

De Panne - Belgium - wielrennen - cycling - radsport - cyclisme - Lieuwe Westra (Netherlands / Team Astana) pictured during Driedaagse De Panne Koksijde 2016 - Stage 3b - from De Panne to De Panne - photo Tim Van Wichelen/Cor Vos © 2016

Lieuwe Westra wins Three Days of De Panne, Kittel and Bodnar victorious on final day of racing

by Matt de Neef

Despite an uninspiring performance in the closing kilometres of the race’s opening stage, Lieuwe Westra (Astana) has gone on to win the Three Days of De Panne in Belgium.

Westra had been sitting third overall coming into the final day of racing before jumping to the top of the leaderboard in the stage 3b individual time trial.

That particular time trial was won by Poland’s Maciej Bodnar (Tinkoff) who ousted three-time world time trial champion Tony Martin (Etixx-QuickStep) by less than a second. Westra finished fourth on the stage, three seconds behind the winner, enough to win the race overall ahead of stage 1 winner Alexander Kristoff (Katusha) and teammate Alexey Lutsenko.

Earlier in the day the stage 3a road stage was won by Marcel Kittel (Etixx-QuickStep) who made up for a missed opportunity the day previous, beating Phil Bauhaus (Bora-Argon 18) and Kristoff to the line in De Panne.

Driedaagse De Panne - Koksijde - stage 3a

“Yesterday it was very close and missing out on the victory left me with a sorrow taste, so this morning I was very motivated to make up for it,” Kittel said. “I am very happy to reach my goal and get that stage for which I came here. My legs were good and strong, and the team worked really well. We were up there at the front, controlling the six-man breakaway with Iljo and Davide. But it wasn’t about only one rider today, the entire team was impressive and I must thank the guys for that.”

Final Classification: > - Stage Result

Thursday 31st March 2016

1. nl
Astana Pro Team
2. no
KRISTOFF Alexander
Team Katusha
3. kz
Astana Pro Team
The CyclingTips Daily News Digest features the most important and interesting news and content from around the cycling world, published every weekday morning at 9am AEST. Get it delivered straight to your inbox.

Today’s feature image comes from Kristof Ramon and shows Alexander Kristoff and Niki Terpstra in the race-winning move at last year’s Tour of Flanders. Stay posted to CyclingTips for our preview of Sunday’s 2016 Ronde van Vlaanderen, coming today.

  • Michele

    “According to the forensic expert, death seemed inevitable due to the nature of the injury,” Fouard added, referencing the 45 minutes between when the crash occurred and when emergency medical services arrived.

    I find that quote more disturbing than the thought that there are too many moto bikes following a race.

    45 minutes? Is that right?

    • krashdavage

      Agreed. Might be naive but I’d have thought there would be at least one paramedic/ambulance following the race or on standby close to the course?

      • Luke Bartlett

        maybe they meant 45 mins until he was in hospital or something and it got lost in translation? The injury sounds similar to that of Phillip Hughes the cricketer?

      • Dave


        The TDU has always had a number of real ambulances in the race convoy on open road stages and at every second corner on the circuits, so they can be there in no more than a few minutes. The race won’t go ahead without them.

        But maybe that’s just because the TDU was set up by people who were used to working within the safety culture of Formula 1 and they just assumed all sports were the same.

    • Arfy

      It seems the 45mins is referring to France’s SAMU emergency response, not the on-course doctors.

      The response time will depend on several factors, including how long it took on-course doctors to attend, how long it took them to assess and to call through to SAMU, what was said to SAMU, and how urgently they prioritised. All issues for the coroner to investigate.

      • jules

        shouldn’t there be an emergency response team at the race already? other than just doctors?

        • Arfy

          No idea, remember this was a Belgian race that went into France. There may be some issues of authority involved if on-course doctors were all Belgian. But the French article made a clear reference to the 45mins being SAMU response, and as I understand they would send out a helicopter with their emergency response team. It’s not clear if they had an on-course presence but I suspect not.

          • Dave

            The actions taken by the on-course doctors are the same regardless of jurisdiction – help as best you can until a better-equipped ambulance or air ambulance arrives.

    • Neuron1

      Another important question is, do they have the necessary airway management equipment, intravenous access, etc to immediately care for the traumatized patient? Was that his only significant injury? Was there thoracic or abdominal blunt trauma was associated bleeding, consistent with being hit or run over by a motorcycle? How long was he actually on the ground prior to ambulance and subsequent air evacuation? Too many questions and not enough answers. Unfortunately there was a rush to judgement against the moto driver.

  • Kieran Degan

    Westra, despite being Dutch, appears to have started the metamorphosis into the standard Soviet Super-villain form that has become synonymous with the turquoise jersey.

    • Bex

      nah, i’ve thought westra was under performing the last few years. He’s ridden very strongly in the past, maybe he’s made a return to the form he had 3-4yrs ago. this is one of the few times i’m not sus on the turquoise jersey.

      • Kieran Degan

        I think I came across wrong. Wasn’t casting aspersions. I just meant the way he looks

        • Bex

          ha ha, yes in that case i see exactly what you’re talking about.

  • Dave

    Today would have been a perfect day to include some sort of story about a UCI announcement. We could then spend the day guessing as to whether it was legit or an April Fool, or whether there’s really any difference these days.

    • Feel free to draft something up. ;)

      • Gavin Adkins

        btw thank you for not doing an April Fools thing.

    • Gavin Adkins

      I thought Cycling Australia jumped the gun yesterday when they announced that they had started the review of the NRS…

    • Winky

      You could not make up a ludicrous-enough April Fools’ new anti-cycling law in New South Wales that it wouldn’t be believed as legitimate. No April fools jokes are possible. Make up a new law whereby cyclists have to stop and carry their bikes over their heads (while walking backwards and singing Land Downunder) through all intersections and it would be promulgated the next day in Parliament. With a $4573 dollar fine for non-compliance. The day after, police would commence a crackdown.

      • Dave

        After the copyright decision a couple of years ago, being forced to sing Land Down Under would be a clear case of entrapment.

  • CapeHorn

    “…and has been charged with negligently causing serious injury, dangerous driving causing serious injury, failing to stop, failing to render assistance, driving an unregistered car and for driving on a disqualified license”
    See, it is things like this that just make me wonder – What can you actually do about people like this? The car is not registered, the driver not legally allowed to drive, and yet still does. There is the expectation that someone disqualified from driving knows that if they get caught, it is going to go badly for them, but they have made the descision to drive anyway. Knowing this, and knowing that this person decided to leave the scene of an accident, would suggest that they had not yet faced a big enough disincentive to not drive. Being the courts have presumably previously done what they are legally allowed to do to discourage this driver from driving, what can be done so they do not drive again (at least until their next disqualification period ends?)

    • Dave

      A custodial sentence – even if just a short one – will be an option in this instance.

      The key thing is the driving while unregistered and unlicensed – that’s a direct challenge to the authority of the law, and directly challenging the law is the best way to get the law to fight back.

      It will be dependent on the case being handled by a prosecutor who is up to the task and not interested in settling for an easy win.


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