Baloise Belgium Tour

Stage 4) Hamoir - Hamoir

BE Belgium Saturday 12 June 2021 152.7 km

Evenepoel successfully defends his overall lead

Evenepoel successfully defends his overall lead

The penultimate stage of the race witnessed a frantic start, with lots of attacks coming from those willing to spend the day off the front on this short but demanding parcours that took the peloton through the Ardennes. Punctuated by nine classified climbs, the 152.7km route around Hamoir featured some of the region’s most testing hills, including the mythical Mur de Huy, but there were no long-range attacks, as the bunch was just happy to control the six-man breakaway that got away.

Our team again did a stellar job, posting all the riders at the front, and they traded turns keeping the escapees in check while shepherding Remco Evenepoel, who was enjoying his third consecutive day in the leader’s jersey. The interminable succession of short climbs and the Wolfpack’s solid pace strung out the bunch, who with twenty kilometers to go was reduced to around 30 men. Attacks came, as expected, but Davide Ballerini, Yves Lampaert and Zdenek Stybar had no problem in closing them down, while erasing the deficit to the riders in the lead, who were caught on a short hill, close to home.

Surprisingly, this queen stage of the race came down to a bunch sprint, albeit a reduced one. Remco Evenepoel led under the flamme rouge, with Davide Ballerini on his wheel, and did a great job in placing his teammate close to the front on the technical finish in Hamoir. The 26-year-old opened his sprint with 150 meters to go and took third behind Caleb Ewan (Lotto-Soudal) and Bryan Coquard (B&B Hotels) for what was his sixth podium of a season that saw him become the first Italian in eight years to triumph at Omloop Het Nieuwsblad.

“We started the day with the goal of doing something and trying to dispatch the sprinters, but it soon became clear it would be difficult, so we decided to control instead. We did a perfect job, our guys were always present at the front, and in the closing kilometers I tried to give a hand to Ballero”, Remco explained after the stage. “Sunday will be the last stage of the race and we will start it with the goal of defending the jersey and setting up Cav for the bunch sprint. I know the roads we’ll take on from the previous edition, so I will go into it relaxed and confident.”

 

Photo credit: ©Luc Claessen / Getty Images

Race details

1 Caleb Ewan
Lotto Soudal
3:37:48
2 Bryan Coquard
0:00
3 Davide Ballerini
Deceuninck - Quick Step
0:00
4 Giacomo Nizzolo
Team Qhubeka ASSOS
0:00
5 Jasper De Buyst
Lotto Soudal
0:00
6 Ide Schelling
BORA - hansgrohe
0:00
7 Loïc Vliegen
Intermarché - Wanty - Gobert Matériaux
0:00
8 Filippo Fiorelli
Bardiani-CSF-Faizanè
0:00
9 Arjen Livyns
Bingoal Pauwels Sauces WB
0:00
10 Cyril Barthe
0:00
14 Remco Evenepoel
Deceuninck - Quick Step
0:00
30 Yves Lampaert
Deceuninck - Quick Step
0:00
68 Iljo Keisse
Deceuninck - Quick Step
0:57
91 Zdeněk Štybar
Deceuninck - Quick Step
6:53
112 Mark Cavendish
Deceuninck - Quick Step
11:47
116 Michael Mørkøv Christensen
Deceuninck - Quick Step
11:47
1 Remco Evenepoel
Deceuninck - Quick Step
11:51:31
2 Yves Lampaert
Deceuninck - Quick Step
0:45
3 Gianni Marchand
Tarteletto - Isorex
0:53
4 Finn Fisher-Black
Team Jumbo-Visma
1:01
5 Koen Bouwman
Team Jumbo-Visma
1:07
6 Connor Swift
Team Arkéa Samsic
1:09
7 Ide Schelling
BORA - hansgrohe
1:10
8 Oscar Riesebeek
Alpecin-Fenix
1:10
9 Toon Aerts
Baloise - Trek Lions
1:15
10 Jasper De Buyst
Lotto Soudal
1:15
36 Davide Ballerini
Deceuninck - Quick Step
6:54
57 Iljo Keisse
Deceuninck - Quick Step
10:10
94 Michael Mørkøv Christensen
Deceuninck - Quick Step
19:01
95 Mark Cavendish
Deceuninck - Quick Step
19:06
119 Zdeněk Štybar
Deceuninck - Quick Step
24:17
1 Caleb Ewan
Lotto Soudal
60 pt
2 Bryan Coquard
49 pt
3 Remco Evenepoel
Deceuninck - Quick Step
45 pt
4 Jasper De Buyst
Lotto Soudal
34 pt
5 Robbe Ghys
Sport Vlaanderen - Baloise
30 pt
6 Davide Ballerini
Deceuninck - Quick Step
29 pt
7 Ide Schelling
BORA - hansgrohe
28 pt
8 Michael Mørkøv Christensen
Deceuninck - Quick Step
25 pt
9 Gianni Marchand
Tarteletto - Isorex
22 pt
10 Danny van Poppel
Intermarché - Wanty - Gobert Matériaux
22 pt
13 Yves Lampaert
Deceuninck - Quick Step
18 pt
1 Team Jumbo-Visma 35:38:14
2 Alpecin-Fenix 0:35
3 Intermarché - Wanty - Gobert Matériaux 1:19
4 Pauwels Sauzen - Bingoal 3:22
5 Lotto Soudal 3:51
6 Array 4:02
7 Team Qhubeka ASSOS 4:03
8 Deceuninck - Quick Step 4:17
9 Team Arkéa Samsic 4:53
10 Team Total Direct Energie 5:40

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