On Tuesday Aimé De Gendt rode to an impressive second podium spot in Le Samyn (1.1), the opener of the Walloon cycling season. The 24-year-old Belgian finished second in Dour after an offensive race. It was Loïc Vliegen who was half way race the first Wanty-Gobert attacker. In a nervous race everything came back together in the second local lap.
At about 50 kilometers from the line Aimé De Gendt threw his cards on the table. Together with Pieter Serry De Gendt rode 30 kilometers in the attack. In the final eight riders joined the two riders in front. De Gendt still had force in the legs and sprinted to a nice second place in Dour, behind Sénéchal but before pre-race favorite Niki Terpstra and Lars Boom.
Aimé De Gendt: "The moment I attacked with Serry I was hoping for a few more companions. It was tough fighting against the wind with only two riders. But we kept on pacing until we got company in the final."
"When the eight riders joined us after 30 kilometers I decided to save some strength with an eye on the final kilometers. Sénéchal was the strongest in the sprint, but I was able to stay ahead of all the others. I had already used a lot of energy in my previous efforts."
"This podium spot in the opener of the Walloon cycling season is of course a very nice reward for our sponsors. I will be competing in GP Monseré in Roeselare on Sunday, followed by a short training camp in Spain. After that I will compete in most of the classics. Last year I was ill during this period, so I hope to really show my value in the upcoming weeks. "
Hilaire Van der Schueren (sports director): "I knew that Aimé was capable of this performance. He attacked from far back and holds on to the finish. Aimé could even progress in the upcoming months and years."
"Today our riders have shown that they are really good as a team. In the opening weekend we rode in the offensive, but the results did not really come. I wanted to see that changed today. There is progress!"
1. Florian Sénéchal
2. Aimé De Gendt
3. Niki Terpstra
12. Frederik Backaert
16. Loïc Vliegen
22. Pieter Vanspeybrouck
57. Boris Vallée
63. Ludwig De Winter
80. Timothy Dupont