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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Sunday, April 2, 2023

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2022 Tour de France | 2022 Giro d'Italia

Imagination was given to man to compensate him for what he is not; a sense of humor to console him for what he is. - Francis Bacon

Tour de France: 2019

Bill and Carol McGann's book The Story of the Tour de France, 2019: A Year of New Faces is available in both Kindle eBook and audiobook versions. To get your copy, just click on the Amazon link on the right.

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GP Miguel Indurain team reports

We posted the report from second-place Sergio Higuita's Team Bora-hansgrohe with the results.

Here’s the report from 7th-place Corbin Stong’s Team Israel-Premier Tech:

It was an impressive ride from Corbin Strong to finish 7th at the Gran Premio Miguel Indurain, who has shown some great form so far this season.

It was a true day of attrition, with attacks coming in thick and fast after they crossed the line to begin the final lap. Despite animating the race and chasing as hard as he could, Corbin could not catch the day’s eventual solo winner, Ion Izagirre, who won the race for a second time having attacked on the day’s steepest gradients towards the finish.

Ion Izagirre takes the 2023 GP Miguel Indurain.

Corbin was nonetheless pleased with his performance.

“The team rode really well today. I had good legs and enjoyed racing an aggressive race. Unfortunately it didn’t come back together for a sprint but I’m satisfied with 7th today.”

The team worked very well together to keep Corbin in the right position at the key moments, and towards the sharp end of the race, having been protected throughout the day, he was able to keep up with all the attacks. Sports director, Oscar Guerrero, was happy that the team worked so well together.

“The race went as we expected, and everything went well for us, it was just about waiting for the key points, and we were where we needed to be during those moments. With EF setting a really strong pace, it was a fast race from about 70km to go. Nick Schultz wasn’t feeling 100%, so he sacrificed his chances for Corbin, and set him up nicely with 17km to go. Corbin managed to keep up with most of the favorites which was really good, but once Ion had gone we knew he would win it, but it’s great to see the team working together to get a result.”

Overall, Guerrero was pleased with the result, even if Corbin missed out on the podium.

“With Corbin finishing 7th, it’s a good performance, as those last two climbs were really about having the legs to go for it, and he was very good, despite the very hard pace, and he showed that even in these hard races with nearly 4000 meters of climbing he’s right up there, so we’ve got to be happy.”

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Here's the GP Miguel Indurain report from 8th-place Elie Gesbert's Team Arkéa-Samsic:

Elie Gesbert took 8th place in the Miguel Indurain Grand Prix. Clément Champoussin also finished in the top 20.

Elie Gesbert:
“I was one of the protected riders today with Clement. We know that it’s always hard here and that the legs have the last word. I would have liked to finish in the top 5 but I finished dry. It’s a performance that remains satisfactory despite everything: I put in a lot of effort and it’s encouraging in view of the next races that await me.”

Arnaud Gérard, sport director:
“I think we are in our place today with this 8th place but we would have hoped to do a little better. We did a good race, the riders respected the instructions to surround Elie and Clément. In the penultimate difficulty, Clément is not far from tipping with the two first ones but the result remains correct. It’s reassuring to see Elie in this state of form.”

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Volta Limburg Classic team reports

We posted the report from second-place Maxim Van Gils' Team Lotto Dstny with the results.

Here's the report from Team Jumbo-Visma:

Both the men's and women's teams of Team Jumbo-Visma rode the Volta Limburg Classic today. Fem van Empel rode well on her road debut and finished eighth. In the men's race, Team Jumbo-Visma did not play a significant role in a soaking-wet edition of the Limburg race.

Early in the men's race, the riders get a soaking.

Volta Limburg Classic, women:
Fem van Empel received a lot of attention in Eijsden. At the Volta Limburg Classic, the 20-year-old cyclo-cross world champion made her road racing debut. Two members of the SD Worx team took the lead for a considerable amount of time. The riders of Team Jumbo-Visma controlled the pace of the peloton. As soon as everyone gathered, Mischa Bredewold accelerated. The leader's pursuers were mainly focused on Van Empel. "I did well in the race and had excellent legs, but you also need collaboration. That wasn't the case. Today, I felt like SD Worx was mostly up against me”, the Dutch rider remarked.

Sports director Rutger Tijssen saw the race as a valuable learning experience for the young riders. "We failed to take the initiative ourselves. Simply put, another team was stronger. As a result, we started on the defensive. It was a good learning experience. The riders got a taste of what it is like to be in the final. Fem didn't fully show what she is capable of. Although unfortunate, we can move on."

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Volta Limburg Classic, men:
The men's race got off to a tumultuous start. Johannes Staune-Mittet and Colby Simmons jumped to the leaders after the race was neutralised because the lead group had gone the wrong way. But they had to let go after an acceleration by Eenkhoorn, Van Gils, Herregodts and eventual winner Groves. Once the foursome had opened up a gap, Team Jumbo-Visma no longer played a significant role at the front of the race.

Staune-Mittet was the highest finisher for Team Jumbo-Visma in fourteenth place. Colby Simmons also secured a place in the top twenty. The 19-year-old American finished seventeenth.

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