Remco Evenepoel became the youngest winner ever and the winner with the biggest lead ever in the Tour of Poland on Sunday. After the WorldTour race, the twenty-year-old Deceuninck-Quick-Step rider was especially happy that his teammate Fabio Jakobsen is recovering well after the terrible crash in the opening stage.
"The biggest victory is that Fabio has come through", says Evenepoel in conversation with Sporza . "I think he gave us the mental strength to go full throttle the last two days. This round ended very nicely for the team."
Jakobsen was in a coma for two days after his crash. Team doctor Yvan Vanmol reported on Sunday that the Dutch champion can probably return as a cyclist, without wanting to put a term on it.
"That is very good news", says Evenepoel. "The first message was that he had to fight for his life and now he seems to be able to make a full recovery. I hope that Fabio can lead a normal life again. And of course we hope that he can do what he likes most: winning sprint stages. . "
Deceuninck won three of the five stages in Poland. After the disqualification of Dylan Groenewegen, Jakobsen was designated the winner of the first stage, Evenepoel was victorious in the fourth stage and the final stage a day later was also prey for the 'wolfpack'. Davide Ballerini sprinted to victory.
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Evenepoel favorite with bookmakers in Giro d'Italia
Evenepoel won the standings with 1.52 minutes ahead of Jakob Fuglsang. The only twenty-year-old Belgian triumphed in all four stage races where he was at the start this year.
"The Tour of Poland was the hardest to win," said the Deceuninck-Quick-Step rider. "On Saturday I had legs that could not be broken and I could ride 50 kilometers solo."
The suggestion to change the season schedule because of his top form and start in the Tour de France was rejected by the former football talent of Anderlecht and PSV. "No, I will keep going for the Giro."
After his final victories in the Rounds of San Juan, Algarve, Burgos and Poland, the Belgian is in first place for the pink jersey among the Italian bookmakers. "That's great," said Evenepoel. "The team has a lot of confidence in me, we are going there with a strong team."
The next race that the top talent will ride is the Tour of Lombardy. The Italian one-day race is on the program on Saturday.
Remco Evenepoel shows the shirt number of Jakobsen after his victory on Saturday. (Photo: Pro Shots)