LottoNL-Jumbo active all day as Paris-Nice races home

Team LottoNL-Jumbo’s riders showed themselves in the queen stage of Paris-Nice today in Nice. Steven Kruijswijk and George Bennett were both part of a big escape, and Wilco Kelderman finished 16th. Tony Gallopin (Lotto-Soudal) won the stage.

Kruijswijk and Bennett already tried to be part of a big breakaway group yesterday, but their attempt failed. Today they succeeded.

A big leading group formed on the climb of the Col de Vence. The two Team LottoNL-Jumbo riders had to react quickly to join.

“We knew that they had to be aggressive to be part of that leading group,” Sports Director Jan Boven said. “Steven and George had to fight for a long time to finish their chase and hit their limits. When the rain came, things were getting a little dangerous in the descents. That took its toll over George. Steven was able to stay in front a little longer.”

When the most of the escape was caught, Wilco Kelderman was well-placed in a chasing group. A puncture was the reason that he wasn’t able to maintain his position.

“I really was fed up by that,” Kelderman said. “I felt very good today, actually, but because of that accident, I didn’t play a role in the stage again. After Thursday, when I had such a bad day, today finally gave me the feeling that I’m doing well. I’m glad that I am able to recover. For now, I have to give everything I have in tomorrow’s uphill time trial.”

Special bike
In the time trial, Kelderman can count on a bike specifically developed by Bianchi. “That bike is extra light and specifically created for the uphill time trial,” Jan Boven said. “The fact that Bianchi invested in tomorrow’s stage with us, is amazing. Now we have to repay that attention. We must try to deliver a good result.”

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