On Wednesday Tom Devriendt rode to his first pro victory in Omloop van het Houtland (1.1, 20/09). The Belgian thus deals with a difficult 2017 season that was disturbed by knee injuries. With 40 kilometers to go Tom Devriendt accelerated together with Brian Van Goethem and Maarten Wynants. The maximum advantage of the three companions was only 45 seconds and in the peloton Lotto Soudal chased for a bunch sprint with André Greipel. The three companions in front worked together very well and held off the peloton. In the sprint Devriendt was faster than Wynants. The 25-year old Belgian thus conquered the flowers for the first time in his third year as a professional. The win is Wanty-Groupe Gobert's sixth UCI victory in 2017.
"Forty kilometers from the line I accelerated together with Van Goethem and Wynants. We really rode for our life and could withstand the peloton. In the sprint we were all three "à bloc". I'm lucky I don't have to win solo but I can also finish it in the sprint. "
"I am especially grateful to the team that in all the difficult times they kept confidence in me during the past year. After knee surgeries in January and February I restarted competition too fast in mid April. Conditionally I didn't go well that time but also mentally I was rather deep. Not that I would stop cycling, but I thought about it for a while. I had a two-year contract, which was not easy for the team. It was a difficult period, but the team never stopped giving me confidence. Today again. "
"At this moment I did not expect a first victory, although I felt very strong over the past two weeks. That is why I also slipped into the breakaway in GP de Wallonie and Primus Classic. I will celebrate this victory a bit, but won't do stupid things. There are still a lot of nice races in which I want to go full gas!"
Results Omloop van het Houtland (1.1)
1. Tom Devriendt
2. Maarten Wynants
3. Brian Van Goethem
4. André Greipel + 00:08
5. Max Walscheid
16. Robin Stenuit
20. Kenny Dehaes
26. Guillaume Van Keirsbulck
46. Mark McNally
71. Frederik Veuchelen + 00:22
81. Wesley Kreder + 00:26
100. Pieter Vanspeybrouck + 01:06