Jan Maas takes 4th overall at Istrian Spring Trophy
A great week of racing on Croatian roads has brought Leopard’s Jan Maas the 4th position in the final general classification of the Istrian Spring Trophy (UCI 2.2). Not far behind him, Miguel Heidemann finished the race in 9th overall. Meanwhile, another part of the team was active at Paris-Troyes (UCI 1.2).
Istrian Spring Trophy
The race started last Thursday with a 1 kilometer short prologue. With Jan Maas, Patrick Haller and Filip Maciejuk all in the top 20, Leopard Pro Cycling showed already promising signs for what was to come. On the second day, the team again showed themselves as they tried to force gaps on the final climb. Many riders were dropped, but then a very big crash happened, involving also four of our seven Leopard riders. Unfortunately, the race ended in a bunch sprint and not much happened in the overall standings.
Before the start of the final weekend, it turned out that Arthur Kluckers was diagnosed with a broken bone in his hand after the big crash. He had to pull out of the race, but it was not all bad news from that point on. On the third day, as the race went up the climb to Motovun, Jan Maas (7th) and Miguel Heidemann (15th) showed their climbing legs after impressive work by Jarno Mobach. Both Maas and Heidemann went into the very cold and wet final stage as respectively 4th and 13th in the GC. The team then followed the tactical plan very closely, as Miguel Heidemann attacked and took some bonus seconds, whereas the others protected Jan Maas in a very good way. Heidemann’s move was only caught back at 1 kilometer from the finish line, but it meant that he also entered the top ten in the final overall results and above all won the intermediate sprint classification. All in all a very amazing result early in the season!
4. Jan Maas (NED) + 0’11”
9. Miguel Heidemann (GER) + 0’19”
25. Jarno Mobach (NED) + 1’03”
53. Filip Maciejuk (POL) + 6’34”
61. Patrick Haller (GER) + 7’00”
Also at Paris-Troyes the riders had to cope with cold conditions as the thermometer read only 5 degrees Celsius at the start in Nogent-sur-Seine. In the first part of the race many attacks took place, which also caused the peloton to split several times. In the end a large group of riders established a good lead. At one point the race had thirteen riders in front with a maximum lead of 2 minutes and 45 seconds. When entering the local circuit with two difficult climbs, the elimination battle began. Slowly but surely also the Leopard riders were not part of the race anymore. It looked like five riders were going to sprint for the victory, but they were joined by six others in the last few hundred meters. Romain Cardis sprinted to the victory, for Leopard only 18-year-old Tim Torn Teutenberg reached the finish in Troyes.
67. Tim Torn Teutenberg (GER) + 7’33”
DNF. Loïc Bettendorff, Colin Heiderscheid, Cedric Pries (all LUX) and Louis Coqueret (FRA)
(c) Visit Motovun
Jan Maas, 4th at the Istrian Spring Trophy
“After a perfect winter I knew I was in a good shape towards the start of the season. The prologue confirmed this even more with a 12th place, and after that the team gave me a lot of confidence to hit it full gas on the final climb on Saturday. Here I set the base for a really solid GC result. I was strong, but thankfully I also had a very strong team around me, which made it possible to keep this position. For example, if I didn’t have Patrick and Jarno with me in the last 30 kilometers of the race, then I would probably would have lost touch with the first group.”