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by Mark Zalewski
February 28, 2017
In today’s CyclingTips Daily News Digest: Barbin wins sixth stage in Langkawi, Gibbons remains in lead; Aristi wins Tropicale Amissa Bongo opener; Sergio Henao wins Colombian road title; Bike Pure: No testing done at recent UCI cyclocross races, says riders offered drugs at events; Peloton shaking its collective head over Sagan; Directors upset over sidewalk riding in Omloop Het Nieuwsblad; Vanmarcke points to Sagan for missing out on Omloop win; Quintana on disc brakes: heavier, less aero, and dangerous; Tony Martin unable to finish Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne after hard crash; Patrick Lefevere follows racing action from helicopter; Boonen taking early season setbacks in stride; British Government backpedals on reforms for injured cyclists to claim compensation; 2017 UCI Women’s WorldTour preview: Alice Barnes; On-board highlights from the Abu Dhabi Tour; Pedestrian tries to kick cyclist off bicycle.
The obvious takeaway from the first weekend of true European racing is how can world champion Peter Sagan be beaten? While he only nearly won at Omloop het Nieuwsblad, he stamped his authority all over Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne, and was the only rider to be in contention for the win in both races. Sporza put the question to riders and directors following the weekend.
“A blind man could even see that he would win,” said Lotto Soudal manager Marc Sergeant. “If he’s still there in the last 10 kilometers, you can forget it. I hope he is already at 100 percent, but I fear not.”
“He rode on the front, and once he realised it, allowed himself to settle again,” said AG2R La Mondiale’s Oliver Naesen. “Then it seemed that he did the same thing again, but this time he gave such an effort that almost no one could go with it.”
“If he is strong, there is little to do,” said Jürgen Roelandts (Lotto Soundal). “It is also a playful thing, I think. He amuses himself and that is because he is the strongest.”
Quick Step Floors DS Wilfried Peeters refuses to accept that everyone is only racing for second place to Sagan. “He can occasionally make a mistake in the finale, which he has already proven. But I can not deny it, he is really in good shape.”
Click through to read more at Sporza.