Sep Vanmarcke (BEL/LottoNL-Jumbo)Post-Tour Criterium Mechelen (Belgium) 2016

Your Monday Daily News Digest

by CyclingTips

August 1, 2016


In today’s CT Daily News Digest: Mollema wins Clasica San Sebastian; Kirsten Wild wins women’s Prudential RideLondon; Boonen speeds in to win Prudential Ride London Classic; Valgren continues Tinkoff team’s overall success in Tour of Denmark; Sergiy Lagkuti wins the Tour of Qinghai Lake; Ulissi beats Yates to win Circuito de Getxo Memorial Ricardo Otxoa; Clarke triumphs on stage three of Volta a Portugal; RideLondon sportif crashes delay pro men’s race; Post-Tour crits: The pro wrestling of cycling; The inner workings of the post-Tour de France criteriums; Transcontinental No.4 has begun; Girdlestone still battling effects of severe crash: ‘The most testing 8 weeks of my life’; Altitude Training Camp 2016 – An Post Chain Reaction  

Clasica Ciclista San Sebastian 2016

Mollema wins Clasica San Sebastian

by CyclingTips

Bauke Mollema rebounded from the bitter disappointment one week ago when crashes ruined his podium chances at the Tour de France by soloing to his biggest, and first ever, WorldTour win in Clasica San Sebastian Saturday.

“The last days of the Tour de France were really disappointing for me, and this was a good way to fight back,” said Mollema. “I recovered well from the Tour, and I am really happy to win, I have always loved this race and have always finished in the top 10. This is the first WorldTour classic I have won and have always wanted to be on the podium of this race and have one of those Basque hats, and now I finally have one.”

The World Tour Classic, a 220-kilometer run through the Basque hills, all came down to the last, steep climb where four riders emerged at the top of the 1.8-kilometer ascent with gradients exceeding 20 percent: Mollema, Alejandro Valverde (Movistar), Tony Gallopin (Lotto Soudal) and Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha).

Mollema, knowing he didn’t stand a chance if it came to a sprint, caught the other three by surprise by launching an immediate attack with just over eight kilometers to go.

Mollema’s advantage hovered around 10 seconds as the kilometers ticked away, and with three kilometers remaining it appeared the trio were about to tag him back. But no one wanted to make the last effort to close the gap, and his advantage grew again. Under the one-kilometer to go banner Mollema had 15 seconds, and in the final meters enough time to sit up and savor his first World Tour victory.

“Yesterday in training I did the last climb twice and three times the descent, so I knew what was coming,” continued Mollema. “I was a few places behind when Rodriguez went, and it was a narrow climb, so it was difficult to pass the other riders. But I felt quite good and knew that I could close the gap in the last few hundred meters of the climb. On the top, we were four and Rodriguez slowed down a little bit, and I think that was the perfect time to go.”

1. nl
Trek - Segafredo
2. fr
Lotto Soudal
3. es
VALVERDE Alejandro
Movistar Team
  • Robert Merkel

    I really don’t get the appeal of a post-Tour crit for spectators.

    Why not have a real race instead – you could still pay Chris Froome appearance money to have a roll-around and sign autographs, but do away with the pretence of having him outsprint Greipel and Sagan.

    • It’s a good question. Maybe the riders are too buggered to sign up for doing a real race?

      • Robert Merkel

        Maybe. But how hard would a one hour crit be, particularly if you chose a not particularly technical circuit?

        • For those guys, probably not too tough. I know that the organisers ask the riders to ride around in easier gears to make it look like they’re going faster. But there’s always someone there who wants to win, so it would get tough no matter what. It would be disappointing for fans to see some fresh unknown conti rider win against a star studded field who just finished the TdF.

          • Dave

            It’s not unknown for the organisers of a crit to select a local rider to get into the final sprint with the big names.

      • Angellawry

        historically these rides were a great way too make some dollars (see how Oppy et al used them) , let public see riders who only had access to radio tdf commentary and also a good way to showcase local riders to various teams. win win. If it still draws crowds then why not!

        • Dave

          Riders don’t get exposed to teams, because the teams don’t attend.

          The post-Tour period is usually used as a mid-season break for the team staff who had worked their collective rear ends off with the big stage racing season. The riders have to get themselves organised for the crits, if they want the help from team staff they will have to pay them a cut of the appearance fee.

          • Lillyasmith2

            <<o. ?????????????????????????.????????????????????????????::::::!fn306m:….,……..

    • Nitro

      Any different from the pro tennis players playing an “exhibition match” ?

    • I tend to agree Rob. There’s a fascinating interview with one of the people who organises these festivals over on Alps & Andes

    • Warwick

      I’d say a lot of the spectators aren’t ardent cycling fans and only come for the spectacle, the general (non-cycling public) probably have no idea that Froome can’t beat Greipel in a sprint. After all Froome beat Greipel in the Tour De France so he must be the best rider there.

  • PDidds
    • Tim Ashton

      I watched the race this morning after recording it last night, a really frustrating end with fixed finish line cameras only.

  • Andy B

    Happy to see Mollema get a win :)

    • spicelab


  • Dave

    Transfer season is officially underway with BORA-hansgrohe making the first big announcement that Peter Sagan, Erik Baška, Maciej Bodnar, Michael Kolar and Juraj Sagan have all been signed from Tinkoff.


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