Ben Hermans Great Victory in Italy
A winner cannot play it safe. He’s got to take the bull by the horns when the moment presents itself, and then not look back.
That was BEN HERMANS all the way today in one of his most impressive victories, wearing ISN’s colors at the Italian one-day race of Giro dell’Appennino.
His move came 3 kilometers to the top of the last climb of the day, the Madonna della Guardia. Until then, the team supported him greatly – taking part in controlling the peloton in the front alongside INEOS and setting a high pace in the last climb.
The move by Ben was decisive. Just two riders were able to stay close and Ben held only a 20-second gap on the top.
But 24 km were still awaiting …
After a very fast descent, Ben went into TT mode and he was so powerful and determined, nobody was able to close the small gap and he won with 30 seconds to spare.
“He told us on the radio that he felt great,” recalled DS Cherie Pridham (who brought home this win in her first race as leading sports director).
And great he was.
“I’m obviously really happy that today all went according to what we had planned. I have to thank all my teammates for their work. Especially the young guys, Sebastian and Alexis who did the longest pulls today to put me into a good situation in the final of the race.
“In the last climb I got paced well by Tom and Alex, [who] made the race hard so when the attacks followed by other teams, we were very soon only with three guys left.
“1.5 km before the top of the last climb, Moscon and Ayuso dropped also and I had to go 25 km solo, which wasn’t easy because of technical downhill and 15 km of full headwind on the flat roads to the coast.
“[I] expanded the gap from 20 seconds to 45 seconds and had all the time to put Factor in the picture at the finish line. For sure the Factor Ostro helped me on the flat roads to expand the gap and stay in front to take the win. Finally, I won a race on this amazing bike, after the TTT win in Coppi e Bartali.”
The ISN team today:
Tom Van Asbroeck