In form Cort sprints to fifth at Impanis-Van Petegem

Sat 17 Sep 2016

Dual Vuelta a Espana stage winner Magnus Cort sprinted to a respectable fifth place at the Primus Classic Impanis-Van Petegem in Belgium today after a fast finale.

ORICA-BikeExchange rode an intelligent and controlled race, keeping Cort safely protected for much of the 200kilometres before the fast run into the finish saw the Dane show his confidence by bridging solo over to the late attack.

The race was won by Fernando Gaviria (Etixx-Quickstep) from a strong lead out with Cort doing well to stay out of trouble and finish in fifth place after starting his sprint from a little further back.

Sport director Laurenzo Lapage was content with the performance of the team and impressed with the steps forward made by Cort after the team’s success in the Vuelta.

“For most of the race it was a perfect situation for us with the breakaway up the road,” said Lapage. “That meant that we didn’t have to chase and the guys did a very good job of looking after Magnus (Cort) and staying focused on holding our position up near the front.”

“Magnus is starting a new chapter now, his confidence is very high after his stage wins in the Vuelta and you could see today when he bridged solo across to the leaders before the finale that he is strong and full of self belief.

“The sprint was close and again, even though he started from further back Magnus did well against a strong field dominated by Etixx-Quickstep and his confidence and new level can only be positive signs for ORICA-BikeExchange.”

How it happened:

The 19th edition of Impanis-Van Petegem began aggressively with the peloton, somewhat remarkably still together after 30kilometres of racing despite repeated attacks.

The breakaway finally formed after 45kilometres had been covered, four riders formed the initial escape before two more bridged across before the halfway point.

Three minutes separated the bunch and the six leaders with 80kilometres to go and Lotto-Soudal and Etixx-Quickstep controlling the chase of the peloton.

Approaching the final 40kilometres and the gap had been reduced to 40seconds with the front of the speeding peloton ready to split with every kilometre.

The catch was made ten kilometres later, the race only held together briefly as a group of nine riders, led by Greg Van Avermaet (BMC) attacked from the front and gained a lead of 20seconds.

Cort bridged across to the nine leaders with 16kilometres to go and the peloton still 20seconds behind.

The move lasted until seven kilometres from the line before being swept up by the speeding bunch.

A small crash slightly disrupted the finale, happening behind the bunch who went on to contest the sprint that was won by Gaviria with Cort finishing in fifth place for ORICA-BikeExchange.

The racing continues in northern Europe for the Australian outfit at the seven-day Eneco Tour which starts on Monday 19th of September. 

Primus Classic-Impanis Van Petegem results:

1. Fernando Gaviria (Etixx-Quickstep) 04:37:20
2. Timothy Dupont (Verandas-Willems) ST
3. Maximiliano Ariel Richeze (Etixx-Quickstep) ST
5. Magnus Cort (ORICA-BikeExchange) ST