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Welcome to your Daily News Digest. Here’s what’s happening today:
Mathieu Van der Poel adds another one-day win to his palmares at Brabantse Pijl, Sam Bennett’s Tour of Turkey sprint dominance continues, Team Sky to become Team Ineos at the Tour de Romandie. Those stories and more in today’s Daily News Digest.
Story of the Day: Van der Poel wins Brabantse Pijl
Mathieu van der Poel (Corendon-Circus) has added another impressive one-day road victory to his palmares, winning a four-rider sprint in Overijse to take Brabantse Pijl.
The reigning world cyclocross champion joined Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-Quick-Step), Tim Wellens (Lotto-Soudal), and Michael Matthews (Sunweb) to form a quartet of escapees late in the race. The group survived to contest the win in a sprint, where van der Poel topped Alaphilippe and Wellens.
“I’m very happy and also proud to be there with three big names in front, and to finish it off like this is kind of like a dream,” van der Poel said.
“I said before this Classics season that this race suits me the best and I’m glad I could prove that.”
The hilly 196-kilometer race from Leuven saw numerous attacks and regroupings over the course of the afternoon. Alaphilippe spurred the one that stuck. He jumped away on the Hertstraat climb with 17 kilometers to go and brought van der Poel, Wellens, and Matthews with him. The quartet bridged to lone leader Daryl Impey (Mitchelton-Scott) and then left him behind on the way to a four-rider battle for the win.
Matthews led as the group approached the final corner, but then Van der Poel moved to the front as the quartet rounded onto the finishing straight. All four held their fire until the final 150 meters, when van der Poel jumped out of the saddle to launch his sprint. No one even came close to matching his speed. The Dutchman hit the line with room to spare, adding a Brabantse Pijl title to his tally of strong results so far in 2019. Next up for van der Poel is the Amstel Gold Race, on home turf in the Netherlands.
Deceuninck-Quick-Step made sure to have a few cameras on-hand at Paris-Roubaix to document Philippe Gilbert’s huge victory in video form. At 36 years, he managed to add another Monument title to his already impressive palmares. He has now won four of the five biggest Classics, leaving only Milano-Sanremo on his Monument to-do list.
Bennett keeps winning in Turkey
Sam Bennett (Bora-Hansgrohe) won his second straight sprint at the Tour of Turkey, powering to victory on a slightly uphill drag in Wednesday’s stage 2.
The 28-year-old Irishman finished things off for a Bora team that was very busy in the finale. Lukas Pöstlberger tried to solo clear with two kilometers to go. As he was caught by the pack 200 meters from the line, Bennett hit the accelerator and left his rivals behind. He took a convincing win at the line, with teammate Felix Grosschartner claiming runner-up honors and Jonathan Restrepo (Manzana Postobon) finishing third.
“I said to my guys, that they should go and I will tell them on the climb if I feel strong enough or not cause the stage wasn’t so easy with the finale,” Bennett said. “Well, I pushed hard and with Felix finishing in second place I think we showed another amazing team effort.”
Bennett’s second victory in as many days in Turkey marks his ninth career victory in the race.
Bennett remains atop the general classification with Grosschartner slotting into second, 14 seconds back, and Restrepo in third, 16 seconds back.
The race continues Thursday with a 123-kilometer stage 3 from Canakkale to Edremit.
Team Sky to become Team Ineos at Romandie
Team Sky had been expected to switch title sponsors at the Tour de Yorkshire, but the team will now become Team Ineos slightly earlier. Ineos will debut at the Tour de Romandie, starting on April 30, wearing a temporary kit.
Because the races overlap, the initial plan of starting Romandie as “Sky” and becoming “Ineos” for Yorkshire would not have worked, as UCI regulations don’t allow teams to compete in separate races under different names. Instead, the new name will debut at Romandie on a one-time jersey, with the official new kit making its first appearance in Yorkshire.
De Vuyst wins women’s Brabantse Pijl
Sofie De Vuyst (Parkhotel Valkenburg) won the women’s Brabantse Pijl, proving fastest out of a small group in Gooik.
The 137-kilometer race, featuring several climbs and a few stretches of cobblestones, came down to a late attack and then a reduced sprint. De Vuyst took the clear win at the line ahead of Marta Cavalli (Valcar-Cylance) and Coryn Rivera (Sunweb).
Victor Campenaerts has enjoyed a career year so far, and it’s only April. He took his first ever WorldTour win in a time trial at a Tirreno-Adriatico, and that was just a prelude to UCI Hour Record-setting ride Tuesday in Mexico.
Lotto-Soudal team captured a few highlights from the velodrome in Aguascalientes.
— Lotto Soudal (@Lotto_Soudal) April 16, 2019
Meanwhile, the rider whose record Campenaerts broke tipped his cap to the performance.
Chapeau Victor my man 👊
— Brad Wiggins (@SirWiggo) April 16, 2019
Handmade Bicycle Show Australia is near
The second edition of the Handmade Bicycle Show Australia is on between the 26th and 28th of April. The exhibitor list has grown from 28 to 40, with the majority of Australia’s key frame builders expected to be there. Keep an eye out for our coverage from the show. Find our coverage from the 2018 edition here.
In case you missed it …
Feature Image: Mathieu van der Poel wins Brabantse Pijl. Photo: VK/PN/Cor Vos © 2019