Fabian Cancellara has won the Tour of Flanders for the third time. The Swiss was the fastest in a group of four. Omega Pharma-Quick Step had Stijn Vandenbergh along in the front, who finished fourth. Styby became 18th.
“What can I say? I am especially relieved that I didn’t fell today. I think the half of the peloton crashed. Too bad that we didn’t win the race. The team finished with three riders in the top ten, but only the first place counts.”
In the final a group with all the favorites rode away. Greg Van Avermaet then attacked with 30 kilometers to go. “At that time we were still with four riders in the first group: Tom Boonen, Niki Terpstra, Stijn Vandenbergh and myself. And Stijn closed the gap to Van Avermaet.”
“At that time the group slowed down a little. Everyone was a little tired, I guess. Van Avermaet and Vandenbergh took a minute ahead at the foot of the Oude Kwaremont and meanwhile our group became much bigger because riders came back.”
Cancellara went on the Oude Kwaremont in the chase and took Sep Vanmarcke with him. “I was four of five places behind Cancellara, but could not follow. None of us, actually. Later Boonen and Terpstra tried to close the gap, but it didn’t work out.”
“I don’t know if we made a tactical mistake or not. Vandenbergh is a good rider, but not a sprinter. But he was there at the time Van Avermaet went on the attack. With Terpstra or myself in the leading group, the race could be different, but we’ll never know.”
The next two days Zdenek will take some time to recuperate. “It’s a tough race, not only for the race but also for the head. On Wednesday I start my preparation for Paris-Roubaix. Hopefully it goes a little bit better over there.”By on 06/04/2014