Hartthijs De Vries sprints to fourth in Paris Tours
Today’s Paris Tours marked our last U23 race of the 2017 calender. The 187 kilometers long course started in France’s Bonneval and took place all the way to Tours, including two short but punchy climbs in the ending part of the day. 

The race featured a very fast starts with some combative riders trying to make a gap early on, but the bunch did not let anyone go until a 3-man cut was formed 20 kilometers into the day. That initial group was later joined by seven riders and they formed the breakaway of the day, with our guys playing it safe in the bunch. The leading group was allowed up to five minutes before the main pack picked up the pace and started to reduce that deficit.

With 25 kms to go, and after one of the difficulties of the day, Julius van den Berg animated the race and launched an attack and was followed by two other riders. That 3-man chasing went on to bridge to the leading group and led the race to the foot of the second-to-last climb of the day. At La Côte de Beau Soleil the U23 Dutch National TT champion went for it again and attacked the front group going away with another rider, before being caught shortly after the top. A reduced bunch, including four of our guys, got to closing end of the course upfront and the race was decided in a bunch sprint. Our riders put on some teamwork to position Cees Bol for the final few meters so he could show himself in the sprint. The strong Dutchman was eventually boxed in and it was Hartthijs de Vries who powered himself to fourth overall with teammate Jan Maas rounding up the Top 10 of the day. 

De Vries feels happy with his results today in french roads:

“We had to make it an hard final. 10 guys went away and no one of us was in that break. In the final, it was Julius the one that firstly closed the gap to the front, then Jan, Cees and me on the final climbs. So we were with 20/30 guys in the front last 5km. Cees went right, and there was no space so he couldn’t sprint. I went left and I could ride a good sprint. I’m happy with this result, I felt really strong on the climbs in the final and its nice to finish the season in a nice way. I’m going this wednesday also for a good result in La Famenne, that’s my last race!”