5th for Clarke at the Royal Bernard Drome Classic
Defending champion, Simon Clarke placed in 5th place for Team Qhubeka ASSOS (www.TeamQhubeka.com), riding strongly in the race. It was a team effort throughout, with multiple appearances on the front of the peloton, keeping the break at a controlled distance.
Once the break was caught, there were plenty of attacks off the reduced peloton, with Bagioli staying away to secure the win. The reduced bunch sprint saw Darryl Impey (ISN) placing second and Mikkel Frølich Honoré (DQS) third.
“It was a good race, I was really motivated to try and defend my victory from last year and I tried to approach the race from a tactical point of view similar to what I did last year. For the most part, it worked out quite well. I had good legs and I was feeling good. Unfortunately, I think I started following the attacks a little bit too early, which is where the race split up last year.
In the end, everything came back together for a bit of a sprint, in hindsight, maybe I should have taken it a bit easier and focused on the final stretch. The positives were that I was feeling good, and I was in the front.
The team were also super strong, they rode for me all day, I owe a big thanks to them for helping me and putting me in the right position. I had Fabio Aru with me in the final, helping me out and making sure everything was ok.
It was a good day all round and hopefully, we can carry this teamwork and motivation through to our coming races.”
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Team Qhubeka ASSOS.
About Team Qhubeka ASSOS:
Team Qhubeka ASSOS (www.TeamQhubeka.com) is a purpose-led, high-performance team, fighting to win on the world's biggest stage, to inspire hope and create opportunity. Founded in 2007, Team Qhubeka ASSOS (formerly NTT Pro Cycling) became the first-ever African cycling team to gain a UCI WorldTour license, in 2016.
We achieved our first major win in 2013 when Gerald Ciolek won Milan-San Remo, one of the five Monuments of cycling. We have competed in six Tour de France’s and notched up 7 stage wins, with Mark Cavendish wearing the coveted Yellow Jersey at the 2016 Tour de France.
We are a multicultural, diverse team with bases in South Africa, the Netherlands and Italy. There are 19 nationalities represented across our World Tour and continental feeder team rosters. Our focus on developing African cycling has resulted in more than 55 riders from the African continent be given the opportunity to race on the world stage, since the team's inception.
We race to help people to move forward with bicycles through our relationship with Qhubeka Charity. Through our work with Qhubeka, we have contributed to the distribution of over 30 000 bicycles in communities in South Africa.
Qhubeka (www.Qhubeka.org) is a charity that moves people forward with bicycles. People earn bicycles through our programmes, improving their access to schools, clinics and jobs.
A bicycle is a tool that helps people to travel faster and further, and to carry more. In the face of extreme and persistent poverty, bicycles can change lives by helping to address socioeconomic challenges at the most basic level – helping people to get where they need to go.
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