Matteo Trentin solos to victory in Primus Classic
The Italian captured the win at the Belgian one-day race following a masterful performance of the entire Quick-Step Floors team.
Twenty four hours after Fernando Gaviria sprinted to victory at the Kampioenschap van Vlaanderen, Matteo Trentin made it two out of two for Quick-Step Floors with a spectacular win at the 20th Primus Classic, for many riders the last race before heading to the World Championships in Bergen.
Quick-Step Floors were once again the main protagonists, taking the race by the scruff of its neck and attacking once the peloton was blown to pieces, with 60 kilometers to go. Dries Devenyns and Vuelta a España multiple stage winner Matteo Trentin pushed hard and soon were part of the group which made the junction with the six escapees who were at the front since the opening kilometers.
The race came back together inside the final 40 kilometers, but only for a short while, as the attack continued to come. Soon, 16 men extricated themselves from the bunch, Quick-Step Floors having the numbers there, thanks to the presence of Devenyns, Trentin, Fernando Gaviria and Maximiliano Richeze. Twenty kilometers from the finish, they were more than half a minute clear, thanks to our riders, the only ones to pull in order to ensure the group stayed at the front.
With five kilometers remaining, just as the peloton was preparing to make the catch, Matteo Trentin attacked from the group, only Jean-Pierre Drucker (BMC) being capable of following him. It looked like the two would go together all the way to the line and contest the win in a sprint, but the Italian had other plans and on a small bridge he attacked, dropping the Luxembourger and quickly putting ten seconds between them, as well as extending his lead on the chasers.
A short glance over his shoulder convinced Trentin to ease up with 200 meters to go and celebrate his sixth victory of the season arms aloft, as he became the first Italian winner of the Primus Classic. Fernando Gaviria – who, as Matteo, will travel to Norway for the World Championships – sprinted from the bunch and finished the 199.6km-long Belgian race just outside the podium.
"It was a really nice race today. Together with Fernando, we asked the guys to make the race hard and they split the field in the final hour of racing. Once the selection was made, we had four riders in the group and that was the perfect situation for us", said Matteo Trentin after his fine victory. "With five kilometers remaining, I wasn't going for an attack, my only intention was to pull hard knowing the chasers were coming back, but after getting a gap together with Drucker, I decided to continue. I was aware he too was fast and after a long race you can never know what will happen, so on that bridge I gave it a try and fortunately I dropped him, soloing to this nice win, which bodes really well for the World Championships."
Primus Classic was one of Matteo Trentin's last races in the Quick-Step Floors jersey, and the 28-year-old had many words of praise for his teammates: "I love to see the professionalism of the team, they helped me a lot not only here, but also at the Vuelta, just as I prepare to close this beautiful six-year chapter with Quick-Step Floors. I too wanted to make the most out of these races and repay the guys for their hard work, so I made sure of giving everything for the squad, be it by taking victories or helping my teammates win."
Photo credit: ©Tim De Waele