Final round of the Houtland road race Kenny de Ketely
Omloop van het Houtland, the UCI race between Middelkerke and Lichtervelde, was the last road race of his career for Pistier Kenny De Ketele. This winter he’ll ride for another six days, but then he’ll hang the bike on the proverbial hook. On the road, the Sport Vlaanderen-Baloise rider scored one win. In 2008 he won the Pro Fair in Dentergem. The 36-year-old jockey has been particularly successful on the track. In 2012, for example, he became the world champion in teams racing in Melbourne with Gijs Van Hoecke. He won many titles and medals in the World Cup and European Championships. This summer, De Ketele, along with Robbe Ghys, came close to taking gold in the team sprint at the Olympic Games in Tokyo. Our compatriots fell a short distance from the podium after a bloody final. Also in 2008, de Kettel narrowly missed the Olympic podium in Beijing, and then with Eligo Casey in Madison. De Kettel was already the track coach for the Belgian juniors for a while. The chance of him joining the national team framework for the track after his last six days is out of the question. (FHN)
Taco van der Horn (Intermarche-Wante-Gobert) succeeded in the sprint race at Umlob van Het Hotland (1.1). His compatriot and teammate Danny van Poppel finished second, and Gerben Tejsen (Loto Soudal) was third. Earlier this year, van der Horn also won a stage in the Giroud and a stage on the Benelux Tour. The Dutchman is the successor to Germany’s Max Walshed on the honor roll, who won the Lichterfeld title in 2019. The competition was canceled last year due to the Corona pandemic.
Vincenzo Nibali returns to Astana
Vincenzo Nibali will move to Astana again next year. The Kazakh cycling team has officially announced its return. The 36-year-old Nabali wore the Astana jersey between 2013 and 2016. The Italian then won the Giro (2013 and 2016) and the Tour (2014) twice.
Al-Nabali left Astana at the end of 2016 for Bahrain, Merida. The Shark from Messina stayed there for three years, until he switched to his current employer Trek-Segafredo. At the beginning of his career, Nbali played with Vasa Bortolo (2005) and Liquigas (2006-2012).
Nebali says he is very happy to be back in Astana. “They are like family to me and they have given me a lot. Together we have had great successes,” says the Italian, who also won the Tour of Lombardy and the Tirreno Adriatico for Astana.
What Nabali wants to achieve in his second spell in Astana, he leaves open. The Italian has been waiting for victory for more than two years. His last Tour stage win in 2019 goes back to Val Touraine. “I want to prove myself, achieve certain results, and at the same time pass on my experience to the youth. Together with the management of the team I will set goals for the new season and after that we will take steps in the chosen direction.”
Deceuninck-Quick.Step extends Mikel Honoré’s contract
The Dane will remain with Deceuninck-Quick.Step until the end of 2023. Belgium’s WorldTour team, which will be called Quick.Step-Alpha Vinyl next year, has confirmed his contract extension.
The 24-year-old Honoré has been driving for Patrick Lefevre since 2019, after a period of training. At the end of March, he took his first professional win at Coppi & Bartali Bike Week. After that he was allowed to celebrate on the Basque Country Tour.
This summer, Honoré took the podiums in the Clasica San Sebastian (third place), the Drevenkers (second after teammate Rimko Evenpoel) and the Brittany Classic (third). Last Saturday he finished fourth at the Primus Classic in Hacht.
Movistar gets first boost for 2022 with Oscar Rodriguez (Astana)
Oscar Rodriguez moves from Astana – Premier Tech Squad to Movistar Team. The Spanish WorldTour team has announced its arrival. 23-year-old Rodriguez is Movistar’s first acquisition of the new season. He signed a two-year contract.
The Spanish climber had his best victory so far at Vuelta 2018, then won a mountain stage on either side of La Camperona. This season he missed out on winning the Mont Ventoux Dénivelé Challenge, finishing second behind Miguel Angel Lopez.
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