Boy van Poppel has an excellent start of the classics season. After the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad he also performed well in Kuurne – Brussels – Kuurne on Sunday. He crossed the finish line in 23rd place, but was not really satisfied: “This was a great opportunity to finish in the top ten, but I couldn’t sprint.”
After a slow start, the race was really on when the riders crossed the Oude Kwaremont. Jesper and Boy van Poppel passed the summit in a second bunch, behind a small group of favorites. Others, such as Michael Van Staeyen, were held up by a fall and couldn’t make the junction anymore. Bad luck.
Everything came back together on the local circuit in Kuurne, Only race winner Bob Jungels managed to stay ahead of the chasing peloton. Remarkable: Only 70 riders would finish the race: van Poppel in 23rd place, Asselman in 51st. Van Poppel: “I was in an excellent position right before the last turn, but in the last hectometres they passed me from all sides, after the crash. It’s a shame, I couldn’t really sprint for a spot in the top ten. This was a good opportunity to do so.”
Jesper Asselman is satisfied with his race: “I lost a lot of energy trying to force a breakaway in the early stages of the race. The fact that later I managed to stay in a good position on the Oude Kwaremont and finish in the peloton is really positive for me.”