A fantastic outing in the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad saw Sonny Colbrelli, in his season debut, take home second place in a sprint finish.
In the early phases of the race, the peleton which included all seven of our riders, generally took their ‘foot off the gas’ and allowed the breakaway group of seven to astain a lead of around eight minutes.
This pattern of play continued for mainly the whole entire first half of the race until Mathijs Paasschens was caught by the near-approaching peloton – now meaning the pace of the chasing pack increased tremendously, with just over 100km to go.
As the cobble section of the Classic appeared, so did some unfortunate crashes involving other World Tour teams. Luckily, our riders were unaffected and able to navigate the Holleweg section and continue pushing onwards. The performance of the whole team was incredible throughout and their unselfish natures afforded our ‘leaders’ the best chance to deliver on the day.
With a little over 50km to go, a newly formed nine-man group took the position of leading the race as Mohoric and Colbrelli plotted ways to attack in the final stint. Furthermore as the race progressed, Colbrelli was able to join the leaders that contained ten other competitors – itching to make that last push for the podium places.
As the race was brilliantly poised, the race leader – Van Aert – with 13km to go jetted off and never looked like surrendering his position. The chasing pack, including Colbrelli, continued to try and chase Van Aert but in the end it came down to a tight sprint finish for Sonny to collect the ‘silver medal’ in his first race of 2022.
Sonny spoke to us shortly after “I’m happy for the result and also for my condition! The team did some super work in the final stages [of the race]. It’s a good start to the year and looking forward to tomorrow”
(All pictures can be used for editorial and non-commercial usages only and are copyright @Sprintcycling @Team Bahrain Victorious)