Your Monday Daily News Digest – National Championships Round-up

by Neal Rogers

June 26, 2017

In today’s edition of the CyclingTips Daily News Digest: Oliver Naesen, Jolien d’Hoore take Belgian national titles; Steve Cummings, Lizzie Deignan win British road championships; Fabio Aru, Elisa Longo Borghini take Italian national championships; Arnaud Démare crowned French national road champion; Ramon Sinkeldam, Chantal Blaak win Dutch road titles; Mullen and Boylan win Irish road race championships; Other national champions; Valverde – Froome is the strongest favourite for Tour de France; Feeling undervalued, Kristoff delays extending contract with Katusha; Investors flee from Dalian Wanda Group, owners of Tour de Suisse and World Triathlon Corporation; Video – Tour de France official teaser.

Oliver Naesen, Jolien d’Hoore take Belgian national titles

by CyclingTips

The podium of the 2017 Belgian national road championship, starting and finishing in Antwerp, from left: Sep Vanmarcke (Cannondale-Drapac), Oliver Naesen (AG2R La Mondiale), and Jasper Stuyven (Trek-Segafredo). Photo: Cor Vos.

Ag2r-La Mondiale rider Oliver Naesen was best out of a five-man group at the Belgian road race nationals, consigning Sep Vanmarcke (Cannondale-Drapac) and Jasper Stuyven (Trek-Segafredo) to the lower steps of the podium.

“Winning the Belgian championships is a victory that we dream about from the very first moment we start racing,” Naesen said “I am very proud. I knew that I had good legs on the circuit, and racing so close to home, it all suited me very well.”

1. be
AG2R La Mondiale
2. be
Cannondale-Drapac Pro Cycling Team
3. be
Trek - Segafredo

In the women’s race, Jolien D’hoore (Wiggle-High5) beat Lotte Kopecky (Lotto-Soudal), Kelly Druyts (Sport Vlaanderen-Guill d’Or) and 28 others in a big bunch gallop to the line.

“It was headwind so I had to come really late,” D’hoore said. “Lotte started to sprint, and I was in her wheel, so I just had to come out and it wasn’t that difficult. But you’re never sure if it comes down to a sprint. I’m very pleased with it.

“Obviously it was a big goal for me this year, like it is every year, but it’s not easy if you’re one of the top favourites and everybody is looking at you. I took my responsibility today and I just kept riding the whole race.”