INTERMARCHÉ
WANTY GOBERT

Benelux Tour

Points jersey & 5th top 10 for Danny van Poppel


Following the tradition, the Benelux Tour was concluded in Flanders, on the Muur van Geraardsbergen. The seventh stage had all elements of a Flemish classic, and would seal the general classification, which changed a lot after the stage in Houffalize.

It took more than one and a half hour before a group managed to escape. The peloton rode 100 kilometer from Namur to the linguistic boundary. The leaders crossed the finish line for the first time with an advantage of only 1 minute and started the first of three laps containing the Muur van Geraardsbergen, the Bosberg and the Denderoordstraat.

From the first hectometers on the cobbles, the favorites for the general classification opened the final. Aimé De Gendt and Danny Van Poppel were present, followed by Boy van Poppel and Andrea Pasqualon until the penultimate climb. Thanks to a big collective effort, Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert closed the gap with the breakaway on the foot of the third passage of the Muur van Geraardsbergen.

Aimé De Gendt took advantage of the Muur van Geraardsbergen to make the peloton explode. The rider from Denderhoutem was then joined by Danny Van Poppel in a strong chasing group behind leader Mohoric. De Gendt then sacrificed for Danny Van Poppel, who conquered the points jersey thanks to his 6th place in Geraardsbergen. Mohoric stayed ahead aan took the stage victory ahead of his teammate Simone Colbrelli, who won the general classification. Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert concluded the last World Tour stage race of the season with a stage win thanks to Taco van der Hoorn, five top 10 finishes and a distinctive jersey for Danny Van Poppel and a 21st place for Aimé De Gendt in the general classification.

This 6th place and points jersey are a nice way to conclude a good week with the team. Aimé and I were the team leaders today. As the GC favorites were battling together, we dared to take a risk and wait until the final passage in Geraardsbergen to do our first big effort. In this way, Aimé and I were in the front of the race, but unfortunately the collaboration wasn’t good enough and we were joined by another group in the final kilometers. So Aimé De Gendt sacrificed for me, so I could win the points jersey. I’m grateful for this. This week, we’ve shown again that we’re in a good condition, but we’re not done yet! Personally, I’m happy about my performance because I’m dreaming of representing my country in the World Championships!

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