Hat-trick for Sam Bennett after photo finish at BinckBank Tour
Sam Bennett beat Dylan Groenewegen by a Cat's Whisker, to make it three back to back Wins!
The third stage of the BinckBank Tour was comprised of 166.9 km, spread out over a number of loops around the small town of Aalter in East Flanders.
The route contained several cobbled sections, but apart from that, it was relatively flat and, as expected, the race ended in a fast finish which was fought out between the sprinters.
Today’s stage commemorated the young Lotto-Soudal rider, Bjorg Lambrecht, who tragically passed away last week, with the peloton riding through his hometown of Knesselare. After two hours of racing, the early breakaway containing three riders still remained at the front, a couple of minutes ahead of the main field. BORA-hansgrohe remained at the forefront of the peloton in order to control the tempo, and the breakaway was caught with 70 km to go.
Several attacks from the field resulted in yet another breakaway, with a trio being able to make it up the road. Rain, small and uneven roads, and cobbled sectors made riding in these conditions rather treacherous but the squad from Raubling, supported by other sprinter teams, kept the leading trio on a tight leash, and in the end it came all together again.
Over the last two kilometres, Sam Bennett tried to assert himself in the fight for position, and he was able to catch the wheel of Dylan Groenewegen and sprint past him in the last few metres.
After a decision via a photo finish, Sam was announced to have netted his third win in a row at this year’s BinckBank Tour. With this feat, the Irish champion becomes the first rider who have attained a consecutive hattrick of stage wins at this race. After today’s performance, he was also able to extend his lead in the overall standings as well as the points classification.
“At first, I was not sure if I had actually taken the win or not. It was a very close finish. It came down to a very chaotic finale. I’m really happy to have done the hattrick here, and I’m incredibly proud to represent Ireland with the national champion’s kit as well. It took a fair bit of energy to stay up the front in the race today and keep myself out of difficulties, and so it’s fantastic to be able to have taken three wins in a row.” – Sam Bennett
VIDEO: 2019 BinckBank Tour Stage 3 Highlights
2019 BinckBank Tour Stage 3 Top 10
1 Sam Bennett (Irl) Bora-Hansgrohe 3:48:36
2 Dylan Groenewegen (Ned) Team Jumbo-Visma
3 Jasper Philipsen (Bel) UAE Team Emirates
4 Jurgen Roelandts (Bel) Movistar Team
5 Florian Senechal (Fra) Deceuninck-QuickStep
6 Edward Theuns (Bel) Trek-Segafredo
7 Timothy Dupont (Bel) Wanty-Gobert
8 Jakub Mareczko (Ita) CCC Team
9 Arnaud Demare (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
10 Amaury Capiot (Bel) Sport Vlaanderen-Baloise
2019 BinckBank Tour GC after Stage 3
1 Sam Bennett (Irl) Bora-Hansgrohe 11:16:23
2 Jasper Philipsen (Bel) UAE Team Emirates 0:00:20
3 Dylan Groenewegen (Ned) Team Jumbo-Visma
4 Lukasz Wisniowski (Pol) CCC Team 0:00:22
5 Guillaume Van Keirsbulck (Bel) CCC Team
6 Lars Bak (Den) Dimension Data 0:00:23
7 Josef Cerny (Cze) CCC Team
8 Harry Tanfield (GBr) Katusha-Alpecin
9 Edward Theuns (Bel) Trek-Segafredo 0:00:24
10 Robert Stannard (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott