Is there anything in all that cycling has to offer that the Jumbo-Visma can’t do? With Wout van Aert in her midst, she answers this question quite easily in the negative. And without him then? What is the Vuelta team worth even though the Belgian, Vingegaard, Benoot, Laporte or Kruijswijk are not? Everything is fine, thank you for her and if the competition doubted it, she got a hell of a slap in the opening of the Vuelta for any form of response. On the big tours, Jumbo-Visma has been playing on velvet for almost two months.
Impressive, the Jumbo Visma crushes the team time trial: the finish on video
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The memory of 2019 evacuated
Seeing a team time trial on a grand tour felt original. You had to go back to 2019 to see two, one on the Tour, another on the Vuelta. That day, the training of a Primoz Roglic not yet transformed into a Spanish glutton had seen four of his soldiers taste the bitumen because of a… private and pierced swimming pool whose water had flowed to the road. Not a fan of the theory of great runoff, Roglic got away with a grimace and if the case had no consequences on his final victory overall, he was probably keen not to relive the experience.
On the ground and eliminated on the Tour, Roglic is wary of every day in the race. It is therefore all smiles that he delivered his feelings to the press after this success. “It’s a great feeling. I think it’s well deservedhe launched. It was really fun to be on the road with big crowds and my guys. Everyone did a great job, so we had a great time. My condition is sufficient to win today. I’m very happy with it. It was a pleasure today, the guys really did a great job.”
Primoz Roglic was super strong today
While the leader has not run since the 14th stage of the Tour, we were also undoubtedly scrutinizing Roglic’s form among his teammates. Chris Harper, whose role in the success this Friday is not to be forgotten, was reassured. “Primoz was super strong today. I had to hold his wheel. He is fine“, he appreciated as a privileged observer. The Slovenian already has more than 30 seconds ahead of riders like Simon Yates, Enric Mas, Jai Hindley or Miguel Angel Lopez. Not the worst way to start, to especially since he spared himself the hype inherent in taking the red jersey, devolved to Robert Gesink.
From the height of the Dutchman’s 89 meter, there are 21 departures from the big laps watching you. At 36, the one whose hair has betrayed spring after spring the years that have passed, has long since put his career as a leader behind him. That of a hope, five times in the Top 10 of three-week races and even 5th in the Grande Boucle 2010. According to the arrivals of leaders more ambitious than him, Bennett first then Dumoulin and obviously Roglic and Vingegaard, Gesink took a step back without ever complaining.
Gesink is the one who deserves it the most
“The plan was obviously to try to win and try to get the red jersey for Robert (Gesink)“, admits Harper. The fact that the giant was playing at home is not enough to explain this choice of Jumbo. “He deserves itSlice of Roglic. He is the one who deserves it the most, it has been a pleasure to ride with him for so many years. I started with him in the team, he taught me a lot and it’s good to win as a home team with a home rider.” For the main interested party, if this is not the greatest moment of his career, we are not far from it.
“I can’t really believe it. I’m really grateful to the guys. They were incredibly strong, it was crazy. It’s absolutely one of the highlights of my career. Usually my job is to help the team and help Primoz. I think it’s a really nice way for them to say thank you for the support over the past few years. Riding on my land with the red jersey is like a dream come true.”
Gesink: “It’s a very nice way to say thank you”
This will be the case on Saturday between s-Hertogenbosch and Utrecht. A stage which should end in a sprint and where for once the Jumbo should let the competition laugh. Unless Mike Teunissen thwarts the predictions in the sprint. After all, what can’t the Jumbo-Visma do?
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