1-2 for the second consecutive day at the Benelux Tour on the stage and the final general classification, with Sonny Colbrelli defending the GC leadership and Matej Mohorič as runner-up. Bahrain Victorious concluded the 7-day WorldTour stage race across Netherlands and Belgium countries impressively.
Benelux Tour ended today with stage 7 (Namur-Geraardsbergen, 181.8km), featuring the traditional Flanders climbs as the Bosberg, the Denderoordstraat and the legendary Muur van Geraardsbergen.
On the paper, it was a day that could upset the general ranking. But Bahrain Victorious started the stage with two riders in first and second place overall: Sonny Colbrelli and Matej Mohorič, both heavily favoured to take the stage and defend the leadership, as the course suited them.
After a very fast start and several unsuccessful attempts, a breakaway of four riders was established. 7 further men then managed to join them. But none of the guys in the front group was a threat to the GC.
Once the breakaway was caught back, Asgreen, Mohorič, Campenaerts and McNulty formed a new leading group. Then the Slovenian Champion attacked again on ‘De Muur’ before the final lap to repeat a solo success as his teammate did the day before. On the legendary ascent, Colbrelli came in second place, 11″ adrift, with Tom Dumoulin (Jumbo Visma) in 3rd place (+15″).
Matej Mohorič: “It was like a dream for us today. It’s a super proud moment for the team and one of the most significant victories for us.
The first goal of today’s stage was to defend the GC. I also was second overall, so we were thinking about that as well. The stage win was a goal too, but it was not likely.
We took control immediately after the breakaway was established. We worked super good as a team in front. In the final, Asgreen attacked, and I immediately followed with Campenaerts, and we bridged over to the breakaway. I wanted to save my legs to the finale also to help in case of need for Sonny. Then when I saw the opportunity on the last climb of the Muur I tried to go for the stage win. Sonny protected me from the back”.
Sonny Colbrelli: “1-2 in the stage as yesterday and 1-2 in the general classification. Something we can be more than proud of! Today, I had to defend the leader jersey, but we were also trying to go for the stage as a team. When Matej was leading, I controlled from behind, always trying to follow the various attacks. In the final, Dumoulin accelerated, and I must admit I struggled a bit to follow him. In the end, we managed to realise our plans, and that’s amazing”.
— Simona Mazzoleni to bahraincyclingteam.com