Saturday, April 13, 2013

Havik blows away the competition at ZLM Tour

Yoeri Havik takes the win at ZLM Tour (photo: @RolfBosboom)
On a blustery day in Zeeland, it was a late attack by Yoeri Havik (Netherlands/CT De Rijke-Shanks) that sealed his victory at the ZLM Tour Nations Cup in Goes. Havik attacked in the final kilometers with Mark Dzamastagic (Slovenia/Sava) from a group of 16 others and outsprinted the Slovene to the line. There former break mates were led home by Kirill Yatsevich (Russia/Helicopters).

The race started out astronomically quick and the windy conditions had no forgiveness for those that were caught out. Echelons formed early and with a first hour average of 52 km/h, a group of 17, including the whole Dutch squad, Rick Zabel (who would later be dropped) and Ty Magner among others, were up the road ahead of a chasing group and the peloton. The Belgian and Kazakh teams were caught out and were chasing hard to bring the race back. Soon enough a group of 39 riders had formed behing the breakaway and were chasing the break and eventually joined up with the leaders. This group of 56 riders were the selection that would be contesting the win as the majority of the trailing riders behind would pull out as the race hit Goes for the finishing laps.

After 2.5 hours of racing, the racing started to heat up with multiple attacks trying to gain advantage over the peloton. As the race completed its loop of the Oosterschelde estuary and made its way back to Goes for two final 17-kilometer laps, the front bunch was not letting any moved get away until the final lap. Just before the final lap, a group for 18 was able to separate itself from the bunch, spurred on by Dutchman Brian van Goethem.

Bakhyitar Kozhatayev was the first to attack the group entering the final 10 kilometers but suffered a fall that negated his advantage. With only a few kilometers left in the race and a few riders dropping off the group, Havik and Dzamastagic attacked the bunch and went clear. Possessing the better sprint, Havik confidently launched his sprint and took his biggest win to date in the U23 ranks. 
  1. Yoeri Havik (Netherlands)
  2. Mark Dzamastagic (Slovenia) +2
  3. Kirill Yatsevitch (Russia) +7
  4. Owain Doull (Great Britain) all s.t.
  5. Niels Wytinck (Belgium)
  6. Paco Ghistelinck (Belgium)
  7. Marlen Zmorka (Ukraine)
  8. Maarten van Trijp (Netherlands)
  9. Ty Magner (USA)
  10. Alexis Gougeard (France)
  • I had picked Havik for 2nd place...I guess going one better wasn't too bad ;)
  • This race is seemingly always a clusterfuck so the results that come from here should be taken with a grain of salt.
  • I'm impressed with Magner in his first race in Europe this season. He just flew over mid-week so a 9th place is pretty good considering.
  • Owain Doull is one that was not on a radar this season but after 13th at De Ronde and 4th place here, he is definitely on to watch.

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