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by Matt de Neef
May 29, 2017
In today’s edition of the CT Daily News Digest: Tom Dumoulin wins the 100th Giro d’Italia; Jens Keukeleire wins the Baloise Belgium Tour; Edvald Boasson Hagen wins Tour des Fjords; Marianne Vos wins Gooik-Geraardsbergen-Gooik for a third time; Oscar Pujol wins the Tour of Japan, Nathan Earle second; Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio goes back-to-back with French double; Quintana believes late sickness cost him the Giro; Stijn Vandenbergh released from hospital, two weeks after crash; Transcontinental Race to continue in 2017; Davide Cimolai hit by a car in training; Vulpine saved from administration by Mango Bikes; Giuseppe Fonzi’s Giro nod to Happy Days; Behind the scenes of Tom Dumoulin’s Giro win.
Jens Keukeleire (Belgian National Team; normally Orica-Scott) has emerged victorious from the Baloise Belgium Tour, taking the overall lead on the final day of the five-stage race.
Coming into the final stage, Keukeleire, best known as a one-day Spring Classics rider, was in second overall after a couple of strong performances throughout the race, including ninth on Friday’s individual time trial and third on Saturday’s stage 4. Dutchman Maurits Lammertink (Katusha-Alpecin) won stage 4 in a two-up sprint against Portugal’s Ruben Guerreiro (Trek-Segafredo), while French neo-pro Rémi Cavagna (QuickStep Floors) moved into the overall lead.
On the final stage, Keukeleire and his team worked hard to secure bonus seconds in the intermediate sprints, pushing the 28-year-old ahead of Cavagna in the final standings. Jens Debusschere (Lotto Soudal) won the bunch sprint to take the final stage while Keukeleire unfortunately crashed. But with riders’ times taken from 3km to go, Keukeleire had done enough to win the Belgium Tour overall.
“It’s unbelievable,” said Keukeleire at the finish. “Firstly to start and race here with the national team is already something special, just to pull on this jersey and race with my compatriots in my own country is really special.”
“To be able to finish off the great work of the team and get the victory is truly unbelievable, I’m very happy.”