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“It’s been a year since I’ve had fun like this”




Quebec cyclist Guillaume Boivin finished 9e of the classic Through Flanders, Wednesday.

On the eve of his most important races of the season – the Tour of Flanders on Sunday and Paris-Roubaix the following week – Guillaume Boivin has finally found his legs and his spirits.

The Quebec cyclist achieved one of his best performances in two years, finishing ninth in the classic Through Flanders, a World Tour level event won by Frenchman Christophe Laporte (Jumbo-Visma), Wednesday, in Belgium.

“It’s been at least a year, if not more, that I haven’t had fun like that,” Boivin said an hour after the finish. “Let me tell you, it feels good. »

Fresh out of the Tour of Catalonia on Sunday in Barcelona, ​​the Israel-Premier Tech rider only decided the day before to take the start of what the Dutch call Dwars door Vlaanderen, where he had finished 29e on its first attempt in 2012 under the colors of SpiderTech.

While fellow countryman Nickolas Zukowsky (Q36.5) slipped into a six-man breakaway, Boivin was stuck behind a crash by Belgian champion Tim Merlier (Soudal-Quick Step) on the Berg Ten Houte, a 70km climb of arrival. The peloton then began to split according to the attacks.

“I had to step down. I managed to get in despite everything, but I really made a huge effort to get there. That’s when I realized I had really good legs, but it cost me dearly. »

Boivin therefore found himself in the selection of around forty riders who could still compete for victory on arrival in Waregem after 183.7 km.

“I had the legs to stay in front. It had been a while since I had been in this situation. I have to trust myself and tell myself that I have the legs to even attack or follow the attacks in the bumps. »

Zukowsky, who finished 48ewas caught after 116 km in a breakaway, but two of his companions resisted until the end: the powerful Norwegian Alexander Kristoff (Uno-X, 27e) and the indestructible Spaniard Oier Lazkano (Movistar). He found the energy to settle the peloton’s sprint after 166 km in the breakaway, including the last end alone with Kristoff. Phenomenal.

4 km from the line, Laporte extricated himself from a group of counter-attackers to go alone towards the finish, 15 seconds before Lazkano. After receiving the gift of victory from his teammate Wout van Aert three days earlier at Ghent-Wevelgem, the Frenchman has provided Jumbo-Visma with a fifth success on the cobbled classics since the start of the year.

The American Neilson Powless (EF) completed the podium at the same time. The Belgian Jasper Philipsen (Alpecin) had to settle for the sprint for fourth place.

Despite suboptimal positioning at the red flame which caused him to catch some wind, Boivin gritted his teeth to climb to ninth place, his best result in a WorldTour race since finishing at the same position in Paris-Roubaix in October 2021.

“It could have been a little better. I might have been able to get one more place by being a little smarter. It only remains with Philipsens, [Mads] Pedersen, [Davide] ballerina, [Arnaud] From Lie, it might take me a little longer and a little harder run if I want to have a chance against these guys. »

This result is a huge relief for Boivin who had a last year of little misery where he was in turn affected by back pain, the flu and COVID-19. Called at the last minute, he dragged himself during his second Tour de France.

The three-time Canadian champion had a rough start to the season when he contracted COVID-19 again after playing Omloop Het Nieuwsblad and Kuurne-Bruxelles-Kuurne in late February.

On the floor for ten days, he had to give up Tirreno-Adriatico and Milan-San Remo. His participation in the Tour of Catalonia, where he put himself at the service of his friend Michael Woods (6e), allowed him to regain his form.

Even if he was only entitled to two days off, he was happy to have answered the call for Through Flanders.

“I don’t have a great track record and top 10s in one-day WorldTour races, it doesn’t come every week in my case. I will savor. Above all, it gives me great confidence for the two monuments that are coming. »

After giving up the E3 Grand Prix and Ghent-Wevelgem, Hugo Houle finished 87e of Through Flanders, 3 min 38 s from the winner. He will meet his teammate Boivin on Sunday at the Tour of Flanders, where he will be in his 10e participation.

Source: lapresse

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Para-cycling A puncture does not undermine the morale of Charles Moreau




(Montreal) Even though he had a puncture, Charles Moreau (H3) was not down after the men’s handbike relay race that took place on Monday, concluding the Para-cycling Road World Cup in ‘Huntsville, Alabama.

The Canadian trio formed by Moreau, Alex Hyndman (H3) and Matthew Kinnie (H2) took seventh place, 3 min 8 s behind the winners, the Spaniards.

At the start of his third and final lap, the Victoriavillois had a puncture on his front wheel, which slowed him down considerably, in addition to making it harder to drive in the turns.

“I ran over something sharp, which split the wall of my tire. Everything was fine until then,” said Moreau the day after his race, who rode with a flat tire for 2 kilometers before handing over to Alex Hyndman.

“I thought about quitting because I didn’t want to scrap my rim, but if I stopped, we didn’t collect points. I then took the risk to continue quietly. »

Moreau gave Hyndman the touchline in fifth place. The latter moved up a rank in the provisional standings before giving way to Matthew Kinnie who was the seventh to cross the finish line.

Despite this incident, the Paralympian who won the bronze medal in the time trial last Saturday was still encouraged by the times achieved by each member of the team.

“It was quite one of our best races. We are happy with our performance as a team. […] Our teammate in the H2 class (Matthew Kinnie) is getting more and more competitive and we in the H3s have good podium potential. »

Among the other Quebecers in action on Monday, Tarek Dahab took ninth place in the C2 category. He finished in the last peloton which reached the finish just over 12 and a half minutes behind the winner, Frenchman Alexandre Leaute.

The tandem formed by Benoit Lalumière-Cloutier and Maximilien Moreau (driver) ranked 12e (+8 min 38 s) of the men’s race where the Canadian duo formed by the visually impaired Lowell Taylor and his driver Ed Veal climbed on the third step of the podium after a sprint won by the Dutch Tristan Bangma and Patrick Bos ( pilot).

As for Pierre Czyzowicz, he finished 15e C4s.

The Huntsville stage was the last on the road World Cup calendar. The World Championships will be held in Glasgow, Scotland in early August where Moreau will again be aiming for a medal in the time trial.

The country’s best para-cyclists will return to competition at the end of June at the Canadian Championships in Edmonton.

Source: lapresse

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Classique RideLondon Simone Boilard finishes the weekend in 13th place




Simone Boilard (St Michel – Mavic – Auber93) had good expectations before the Classic RideLondon, she who had managed to finish in 10e place last year. On Sunday, in the last stage in Great Britain, Boilard had bad luck in the final sprint, but still managed to complete the top 10 of the day.

“The race went well. Unfortunately, I derailed at the very end. I’m a little disappointed, because I think the top 5 could have been accessible for me today [dimanche] “, she mentioned in an interview with Sportcom.

The peloton remained well together until the middle of the distance where three riders managed to break away. Frenchwoman Victoire Berteau (Cofidis), Dutchman Sofie Van Rooijen (Parkhotel Valkenburg) and Briton Grace Lister (DAS – Handsling) were finally caught up with just over 10 kilometers to go.

Despite the mechanical problems in the last meters, Boilard managed to hold on to take the 10e rank of this last stage which was won by Charlotte Kool. The Dutchwoman confirmed her victory in the general classification at the same time.

For his part, Boilard ends the weekend in 13e up (+55 seconds). Had it not been for an equipment problem which had a direct impact on her result in the first stage, Boilard is convinced that she could easily have improved her lot in the general classification.

“The Classic didn’t start very well. I had a problem with my wetsuit on Friday, it tore during the race and I lost all my gels trying to close it. As I went to get some gels from the car there was an attack and I was in a bad position to join the leading group,” Boilard said.

The Quebecer admits, however, that the second stage was much more positive as she took sixth place on Saturday.

Also in action at the Classique RideLondon, Gabrielle Pilote-Fortin (Cofidis) finished 90e Sunday to clock in at 68e step in the final classification.

Olivia Baril defends her title

Last year, Olivia Baril signed the first victory of her professional career by winning the Grand Prix in the city of Eibar (1.1), in Spain. Back on the starting line in the Basque Country on Sunday, the UAE cyclist had the sole objective of defending this title.

The Quebecer played it safe on the day’s various climbs to make sure she had enough energy in the final sprint. Baril finally confirmed her victory in a five-man sprint where she finished just ahead of Spain’s Sheyla Gutierrez (Movistar) and Ukraine’s Yuliia Biriukova (UAE).

“It’s always difficult to defend a victory. It went really well, we had to be careful of the Movistar cyclists, but my teammates did a superb job on that side. I didn’t want to make my life too difficult and it was mission accomplished,” commented Baril.

Three other Quebecers were at the start of the Grand Prix in the city of Eibar, Émilie Fortin (Cynisca Cyling) also broke through the top 10 taking eighth place. Adèle Normand (Massi – Tactic) and Joséphine Péloquin (Grand Est – Komugi – La Fabrique) respectively finished 20e and 53e.

For his part, Pier-André Côté suffered a fall with 65 kilometers to go during the third stage of the Boucles de la Mayenne on Saturday. The Human Powered Health cyclist was able to get back on the road, but as his helmet was broken in several places, he made the decision to pull out of the race as a precaution.

Côté therefore did not take part in the last stage of the Boucles on Sunday.

Source: lapresse

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Primoz Roglic wins the Tour of Italy, Mark Cavendish wins the last stage




(Rome) Primoz Roglic added to his record in Grand Tour events by winning the Cycling Tour of Italy on Sunday, adding to his three triumphs in the Tour of Spain.

Roglic, a former ski jumping specialist, became the first Slovenian to win the Giro. He did it in spectacular fashion by winning the penultimate stage and stealing the leader’s pink jersey from Geraint Thomas in Saturday’s time trial, contested in mountainous terrain.

Riding a pink bike, wearing a pink helmet and pink socks, Roglic rode in relaxed mode during the final stage, 135 km long on the cobbled streets of Rome, on Sunday, and which was completed next to the Roman Forum.

Roglic completed the 21e stages of the Tour of Italy with a 14-second lead over Thomas.

Briton Mark Cavendish, who recently announced that he will retire at the conclusion of the current season, won the 21e stage in a sprint finish with a final time of two hours 48 minutes 26 seconds.

Canadian Derek Gee crossed the finish line in this peloton in 57e place. Overall, Gee, a 25-year-old cyclist from Ottawa, finished in 22e position, 40: 54 from the big winner.

Source: lapresse

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