They say that a human’s character is tested in moments of defeat, but for ISN’s Mads Wurtz, it was the moment of success that revealed his true self.
He was standing there at the finish line, after the grueling and decisive third stage, where he was able to finish 3rd from the day’s breakaway and take control of the third place overall. It was maybe one of his most impressive races of recent memory.
But instead of marveling about his feat, he was full of praise for a teammate that finished minutes after him, almost obscured. “He is my MVP,” he said, referring to his new Belgian teammate Sep Vanmarcke, and went on to describe how he was able to preserve energy while Sep was covering one attack after the other. “So, when the breakaway was finally formed, I had all the energy in the world to follow.”
It was not that simple, of course, and the credit must go to the 26-year-old Dane. “We gave him the chance to be a GC leader, and he proved that he deserved the chance,” said our sports director Eric Van Lancker. Indeed, Mads was calm and collected during the 70-km-long breakaway and was waiting for his chances. His only regret was letting Tim Wellens escape during the last descent, leaving his breakaway partners in his shadow. Still, Mads was able to sprint well and grab that 3rd place overall, 46 seconds behind Wellens and only two behind Edward Theuns from Trek-Segafredo.
“It will be challenging to catch Wellens, but second place is within reach, “ he said, looking forward to the hilly stage tomorrow and the decisive 10 km TT that will end it all on Sunday.