Sprinters Prevail on Eneco Stage FourThu 15 Aug 2013
It was another hectic and nervous build up to the sprint finish on stage four of the Eneco Tour, culminating in a dominant win by Andre Greipel (Lotto-Belisol). ORICA-GreenEDGE finished inside the top ten, with Jens Keukeleire sprinting to seventh place.
Pieter Jacobs (Topsport Vlaanderen), Pim Ligthart (Vacansoleil), Ioannis Tamouridis (Euskaltel) and Staf Scheirlinckx (Accent Jobs-Wanty) escaped early int the day. The foursome built up a maximum advantage of 5’40 over the bunch, until the big teams moved to the front of the chasing peloton with around 50km left to race.
As the bunch hit the finishing circuits in the Dutch town of Vlijmen, Sky, RadioShack and Saxo-Tinkoff tussled for control of the final. Nerves combined with the technical roads of the finishing circuit resulted in a crash with 6km to go. The ORICA-GreenEDGE riders managed to avoid the incident.
In part because of the crash, it was a depleted bunch of around fifty riders that contested the final sprint. While Narrow roads and high speeds on the circuit lap made the race difficult to control, Lotto-Belisol managed to rally their men into formation and deliver Greipel to the sprint in an ideal position.
Greipel capitalised on his team’s diligence and powered to an impressive victory over Giacomo Nizzolo (RadioShack) in second and Lars Boom (Belkin) in third. Keukeleire finished on bunch time in seventh place.