Theuns victorious in Belgium Tour

Edward Theuns (Trek-Segafredo) capitalized on a great lead-out and sprinted to his first victory of the season in stage one at the Baloise Belgium Tour.

The 174.5-kilometer stage played out towards a bunch finish with an easily-controlled two men forming the day’s breakaway and everything was together again with 17-kilometers remaining.

A few antagonists tried their luck at spoiling a sprint ending, but the high-pace in the chaotic final kilometers kept everything tight. With perfectly-timed precision, Trek-Segafredo came to the front in leading out Theuns, and he delivered on the uphill finish with a powerful sprint to win by half a bike length.

“The team launched me perfectly in the last two kilometers,” explained Theuns. “They did amazing work, Boy (Van Poppel) in particular did such a long pull in the end. I kept pushing him and he rode until he almost fell off his bike. When I was alone I had to wait a little bit before launching my sprint, but I picked the right moment and then when the bump came I knew I had it.

“For me, it is a very important victory. I was waiting for my first victory this season and I had very high ambitions coming to the Tour of Belgium. I was happy with the prologue yesterday, I did a good time and good values on my SRM, and I was confident that the form is good.”

Theuns has worked tirelessly for the team’s top sprinters this season, and when given his chances, knocked on victory’s door, sprinting to three podium places, but never the top step.

“In the spring I gained a lot of confidence in my sprinting, I felt like I made progress and felt good power,” continued Theuns. “I rested for a week after the Classics and started building again with the Tour of Belgium being a big goal. I came here with ambitions to win a stage. My sprint felt good in training, and today all the hard training paid off.”

Belgium Tour 2016 – stage 1 results (Buggenhout  – Knokke-Heist):

1 Edward Theuns (Trek-Segafredo)


2 Daniel Mclay (Fortuneo – Vital Concept)


3 Kenny De Haes (Wanty – Groupe Gobert)


4 Baptiste Planckaert (Wallonie Bruxelles)


5 Timothy Dupont (Veranda’s Willems)


6 Jonas Vangenechten (IAM)


7 Jonas Ahlstrand (Cofidis)


8 Reto Hollenstein (IAM)


9 Francesco Chicchi (Androni Giocattoli – Sidermec)


10 Pieter Vanspeybrouck (Topsport Vlaanderen – Baloise)



General classification after stage 1:

1 Wout Van Aert (Crelan-Vastgoedservice)


2 Tony Martin (Etixx – Quick-Step)


3 Yves Lampaert (Etixx – Quick-Step)


4 Reto Hollenstein (IAM)


5 Niki Terpstra (Etixx – Quick-Step)


6 Edward Theuns (Trek-Segafredo)


7 Martin Elmiger (IAM)


8 Lars Boom (Astana)


9 David Boucher (Crelan-Vastgoedservice)


10 Daniel Mclay (Fortuneo – Vital Concept)