Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl best team at the Saudi Tour
The Wolfpack concluded its first ever outing in Saudi Arabia by doing what it does best, going on the attack and animating the stage, before getting involved in the fight for victory. A short and flat stage starting and concluding in the stunning Alula Old Town had Jannik Steimle clip off the front and book a place in a four-man group who at one point had two minutes over the peloton.
Inside 20 kilometers to go, as the bunch was making inroads, the German attacked and dropped his companions, showing amazing determination as he continued all by himself until the final lap, where only a concerted effort of several teams managed to reel him in. Then Tim Declercq – fourth overall at the beginning of the day – tried to go clear, but the sprinters’ teams reacted immediately and the stage eventually came down to the expected mass gallop, where Davide Ballerini took a solid third for the squad’s third top 3 finish of the week.
Shortly after the stage, Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl took to the podium to collect the prize for the best team of the Saudi Tour, a well-deserved reward for a squad that had been in the thick of the action on every stage of the race, trying to shape and shake things up.
“We tried our best this week. We attacked in the crosswinds, we put pressure on others, but we also had some bad luck when Andrea was involved in that opening day crash. We stayed true to our mentality and fighting spirit, attacking every time it was possible. We didn’t get a victory, but we can be satisfied with our outing and the prize for the best team of the race”, explained sports director Wilfried Peeters.
Photo credit: ©Tim De Waele / Getty Images