wtorek, 30 lipca 2013

Two podium spots for Haba and Kasperkiewicz in one week

I thought it's a good idea to write something about two Polish U-23 riders, currently racing in the Netherlands. I mentioned them before in my summary of Polish Nationals but today's entry is only about them. I know, it's Tour de Pologne time and not many people are interested in small U-23 races but in my opinion it's worth writing about them, even in a diary form - talented riders don't come out of nowhere and some time ago there was hardly any young Polish rider racing in Europe. These days we watch Majka and Kwiatkowski scoring great results and building their position in pro peleton - perhaps in a couple of years more Polish riders succeed and will be able to spread their wings on the rough seas of professional cycling.

So today - two races and two stories - two WV De Jonge Renner riders - Przemysław Kaperkiewicz and Grzegorz Haba.

Sunday, July 21st

Grzegorz Haba finished 3rd in Kerniel Classic - Belgian one-day race. 21-year-old Polish rider survived the heat and twenty 5.3km rounds, participating in the crucial move and taking podium spot after the finish from a small breakaway.

Timothy Stevens (Team 3M) claimed victory and Sam Lennertz (United Cycling Team) sprinted to 2nd.

photo credit: Otwarte Drzwi/WV de Jonge Renner

I was feeling very good. 8 round before the finish line a small group formed and I was lucky to be there. We worked really well but 2 laps before the end the attacks started. I thought: "it's now or never, if I miss it, I may lose the sprint". When the attacks started again on the climb, I waited and launched my counter attack just before the summit - Haba described after the finish.
Haba was glad to race on such demanding and hilly route (2 hills, one about 500 m long and the other twice as long). The last lap was only 3.7 km long and the ultimate obstacle was the shorter climb. Only two guys managed to stay on my wheel, we broke clear and made it to the line. I was working very hard for the whole race, so I lacked in energy in the sprint and only took 3rd place. But I'm really happy with that, my legs were responding well and I deserved to be on the podium for the whole effort - he said with a smile.

Sunday, July 28th

Przemysław Kasperkiewicz won Ronde van Ransdaal, small race or criterium in Ransdaal. The event consisted of forty 2.3km laps and undulating terrain made it a selective and tough race for U-23 riders. Polish U-23 time trial silver medalist was active since the begining of the race, riding in the front group and launching an attack in the last 10 km. He then managed to win two-men sprint for the line, beating Bram Nolton (Craford Cycling Team). Sjors Roosen (Cycling Team Jo Piels) finished 3rd.  

photo credit: Otwarte Drzwi/WV de Jonge Renner 

We broke away after 5 rounds and there were 6 of us at the front. I thought it's a good situation - we were working together well and the whole action had the chance of succeeding - Kasperkiewicz told me after the race. 10 laps before the line we had 1:10 on the next group. I knew I have to attack earlier, and I did - 4 laps before the line. There was only one rider on my wheel in the final. Last corner was tricky - I needed to take it well and be in the first position to win.

Kasperkiewicz is slowly thinking about Florence and U-23 time trial. This win shows that I'm in good shape but it's far from my best. I'm training and preparing for the World Championships in Florence. I hope to be selected for the national team and represent Poland in Italy - 19-year-old declared.

Kasperkiewicz and Haba will be racing in Poland in mid-August - their team is set to participate in two classics - Memoriał Henryka Łasaka (10.08) and Puchar Uzdrowisk Karpackich (11.08).

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