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Fast stage, faster De Schuyteneer


We came close yesterday, we hit it today: with 46.4 km/h, today’s stage of the Giro Next Gen 2024 was the fastest since the race took on that name. The almost pan-flat altimetry clearly helped, but these U23 guys do indeed ride like the pros.

From Bergamo to Cremona, it could only end in a bunch sprint. The sprint dominator up to this point, Paul Magnier, had announced that his team would be working for Andrea Raccagni Noviero, but in the end, after pulling all day, Soudal-QuickStep lost control of their train, forcing Magnier to sprint again but without finishing higher than sixth.

Lidl-Trek, on the other hand, went all out for Tim Torn Teutenberg today and did so very well but, unfortunately for the young German, Steffen De Schuyteneer of Lotto Dstny, team-mate of the Maglia Rosa, Jarno Widar, eventually came through the bunch like a hawk.

Born in 2005, he is on his first international U23 victory. This guy was born with cycling in his blood, as his father raced and is so passionate about the sport that he named his son after the German rider Steffen Wesemann, winner of the 2004 Tour of Flanders.

“Today it was my turn to sprint after being the last man for Grisel yesterday,” he said after the finish, “I felt great and capitalised on that. It’s a special victory. I come from Geraardsbergen, I love the Classics and in the future I see myself more as a one-day racer. In the short term, however, the future holds a lot of domestique work: there is a pink jersey to defend with Widar!

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