December 6, 2022

Taylor Daily Press

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Everyone is surprised, but Philip Gilbert's goodwill is great: 'Never say never, champion forever' |  Four days from Dunkirk

Everyone is surprised, but Philip Gilbert’s goodwill is great: ‘Never say never, champion forever’ | Four days from Dunkirk

It’s been almost three years, but yesterday Philip Gilbert was finally allowed to raise his arms again. In the four days of Dunkirk, he was the fastest after a tough, hard race. Not only was Gilbert himself happy after his victory, colleagues and cycling followers threw congratulations.

After another disappointing spring plagued by illness, he didn’t think Philip Gilbert would take another win in his remaining career.

So it was a big surprise when yesterday, exactly two months before his 40th birthday, Phil got everyone off the wheel.

Nicholas Maes: ‘Everyone was very happy’

“There have been signs in recent weeks that he is back on the right track,” says sporting director Nicholas Maes. “He’s back on good terms again and laughed more on the bus, but that of course doesn’t guarantee victory.”

After the team arrived, Gilbert quickly surrounded the entire team. Although it was “just” the four-day rallies in Dunkirk, it was clearly a welcome victory for Lotto-Sudal after their ailing spring.

“Everyone was very happy,” says Maes. “Not only for the team’s victory, but for Phil himself. After his difficult months and years, everyone was worried about his situation.”

There has also been a lot of praise for Gilbert on social media. Lots of (former) cyclists reacted to his victory on Instagram. Nicolas Roche, Remy Cavagna, Thibault Ness, Enrique Mas, Fausto Masnada, and Elijo Casey, among others, almost clapped their hands.

Congratulations on Instagram are numerous.

Gilbert is a lovable character within the peloton. Maes also knows: “Everyone respects him. It also makes sense given his convenience. And that always takes into account.”

Gilbert has also been popular on Twitter for a long time. Former captain Mark Raghib, among others, had kind words for his ex-Polanne: “Never Say Never, Champion Forever.” Former top runners Robbie McQueen and Robin van Guchte were also pleased with Gilbert’s performance.

“The intent to achieve overall win”

If Philip Gilbert can maintain his current form, there could be more in these four days of Dunkirk.

He concludes, “It’s actually a joint leader now and tomorrow is the crucial stage. We have the intent to try to get the overall victory, but we’re here with a lot of competition from the French corner, so that’s not clear.” Nicholas Mays.

Overview of the four-day tour of dunekerke
ride Date place distance: after Stage winner Leader
ride 1 05/03 Dunkirk – Anish 161 km De Klein De Klein
2 . ride 05/04 Bethune – Maubij 182 km Tyson Tyson
3 . ride 05/05 Peronne – Mont Saint-Eloic 170 km Gilbert De Klein
4 . ride 05/06 Mazingarbe – Ayr-sur-la-lis 175 km
5 . ride 05/07 Roubaix – Kassel 184 km
ride 6 05/08 Ardres – Dunkirk 183 km
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