This Wednesday, the Team Dimension Data for Qhubeka riders fought hard in Flèche Wallonne but this time, the result wasn’t what the team had hoped for in the Ardennes.
Early in the race, three riders got away. The trio then became a group of six riders and hereafter, the breakaway quickly established a gap of 5:30 minutes on the pack.
As the peloton took on the final lap of 29 km, the morning breakaway had been caught and Alessandro De Marchi (BMC) now was alone in front. Bob Jungels (Quick Step Floors) later made it across to the Italian, but only to drop him and continue alone. For a while, it looked like Jungels might be able to make it all the way but on the steep slopes towards the top of Mur de Huy, the peloton swallowed him whole. Team Dimension Data for Qhubeka was well represented near the front of the pack for a long time but ultimately, team leader Nathan Haas didn’t have his best day on the bike. The top favorite, Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) took the win, while Igor Antón finished as best Team Dimension Data for Qhubeka rider in 28th place.
Oli Cookson – Sports director:
“The plan was to look after Nathan [Haas] but unfortunately, after Amstel Gold Race last Sunday, both Nathan and Serge [Pauwels] had started to get a few tickly coughs. Neither felt great during the race. They still gave it their all, always fighting hard for positions at the front, but this race always comes down to who has the body and legs to do it. Today, we just didn’t have it”.