The talented Belgian talked about his unforgettable week in August.
“Looking back, I think it’s easy to say our team had a perfect run in Germany. We started off with a bang when Ethan Vernon took the yellow jersey in the prologue after a great ride, so the confidence was high, and we carried the momentum into the second day, which had a relentless final hour of racing.
The speed went up there as many teams tried to drop the sprinters, but I remained attentive and when the others decided to drop the hammer, I just followed the moves. We were at the front in just three, with the peloton not far behind, but we shared the workload quite well and rode full gas, holding off the chasers. When I started my sprint, I pushed incredibly hard without looking back, because I wanted so badly to take the stage and all I had in mind was to cross the line first.
Getting my first victory came with a special feeling, and I loved it that I did that in the Soudal Quick-Step jersey. The remaining stages weren’t easy, as they had plenty of tricky terrain perfect for the others to try an attack, but I was fortunate to have an incredible team around me, which supported me the entire time, controlling the race in the hectic moments and helping me bring home the red jersey.
Taking my first win and my first GC victory, both in the same week, was something incredible. I was proud of what we achieved there as a team and delighted at the same time that I made an important step on a personal level in that week. I also think that I found my balance when it comes to my role in the squad, and in the future, I would like to grow further and get more solid results in this type of races, but also to help the team in the Grand Tours.”
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