Team Jumbo-Visma have continued their astonishing run of big wins with several more major victories over the weekend.
Top billing was Primoz Roglic winning the Volta a Catalunya, Christophe Laporte and Wout van Aert enjoyed a 1-2 at Gent-Wevelgem, and an up-and-coming development rider winning a major race as well.
Roglic’s Volta a Catalunya win was a thriller, the former champion ski jumper holding off numerous strong attacks by World Champion Remco Evenepoel during the final stage into Barcelona.
Finishing 6-seconds ahead of the Remco on GC, Roglic was clearly over the moon.
“The Volta a Catalunya was missing from my list of honours,” he said. “To have won this race means a lot to me – I’m honoured and very happy.”
Some 1200km north of Spain in a much colder Belgium, Christophe Laporte and Wout van Aert performed phenomenally to take out the 2023 Gent-Wevelgem.
Powering off from the peloton with around 50km to go, it was ‘race over’ from that point on. Crossing the line side-by-side, Laporte took official honours for his first win of the year.
“Without detracting from any of my previous wins, this is one of the best victories of my career,” Laporte said.
“I was close last year, but I finally did it, I’m genuinely proud,” he said. “My gratitude to Wout is so great. That such a great champion puts his hand on his heart and grants me the victory is indescribable.”
Laporte said the two-man team effort might have looked easy, but the duo suffered.
“The circumstances didn’t make it easy,” he said. “But it’s all worth it. This is a nice prelude to next week (the Tour of Flanders), hopefully we can take our form to the next races,” concluded Laporte.
Meanwhile, young team rider Jesse Kramer won the fifth and final stage of Olympia’s Tour. The 21-year-old rider of the Jumbo-Visma Development Team was the fastest of a breakaway group on the Adsteeg for his first victory for the Development Team.
The win placed Kramer third in the overall classification and first in the youth classification.
With Classics season in full flights, the next three major events are the men’s & women’s Tour of Flanders (Sunday April 2), the men’s & women’s Paris Roubaix (Saturday April 8 and Sunday April 9), and the men’s & women’s Amstel Gold (Sunday April 16).