The Dunkirk Grand Littoral team could hardly have feared a tougher weekend in their northern lands on the occasion of the Boucle de l’Artois. Determined to fight for the podium in the final Coupe de France classification, as was clearly announced earlier in the season, the group lost in this third round. “It’s a little slow, that’s for sure. In a multi-day race, you need to look for a lot of points. We saw it last weekend but it gives some ideas for 3 days of Cherbourg. We can still hope to score big.”, assures Thomas Bodo. The sports director is not broken, but he still feels the blow. It is logical after the weekend, when success was sorely lacking. “Kevin (Le Canff) and Axel (Huwens), two of our good riders, didn’t start. When they arrived on Thursday evening, they began to feel dizzy, but everything was in order. Then, when we woke up, on the day of the stopwatch, we realized that it would be impossible … They were both sick. The next day, another runner stopped, also sick. (Sean Bero, editor’s note). With the same symptoms. Then on Saturday, Remy Huens crashed twice. We ended up with two…”.
WORKING ON TEAM time trials to catch up
It is difficult under these conditions to hope to achieve any result, even if Clement Cordenos still takes 9th place in the first stage in line, on Saturday at noon. “He retained his title by finishing 6th in the peloton sprint. On this we scored the points that we hoped to score. Even if with Axel Huens, we too could hope for a result if he was there.”. Opportunities to score with a small group and without two leaders were still not legion. “Obviously it was difficult. Each of the two tried to get into the shots, but wiggle room was less important. When there were breaks they were two or three places behind where he broke, it’s a shame… Clement did his job in the sprint on Saturday morning, Benjamin Labbe was initially present to protect his leaders. From there to asking him to replace the leaders and be there in the final with the strongest on Sunday, it was not easy.”.
Unfortunately, the balance of the weekend is final(see ratings). “We got through it. It’s a shame because the race scenarios were what we imagined and I’m sure Axel and Kevin in their current form would have been ahead. It’s getting more and more annoying.”. There can be no question of giving up weapons for so much. Although the Vendée U has clearly taken off, a podium remains possible in the event of very strong performances in the last two races. “It remains playable for the podium. Always the same teams, more or less, scoring points, and the gaps are not yet completely filled..
CLASS 2 COMPETITION AND FRENCH REGIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP
To hope to move up in the ranks, you’ll have to commit violence to yourself during Chrono 47. And it won’t be easy. “The team time trial wasn’t the round we originally bet on the most, but all of a sudden we programmed it to be a time trial”explains Thomas Bodo DirectVelo. This once again confirms how much the northern club intends to be at the top of the classification of this Coupe de France. “This is not our forte, we know it, but we will do our best. The idea will be to limit the damage as much as possible during this time and then hope for a big race at Cherbourg. With a dual goal: to score as many points as possible in order to still try to get to the final podium. And win the stage. We wanted to win a stage in one of the two stages of the Coupe de France. Unfortunately, therefore, it was not possible in Artois, but we still have Cherbourg. We will do our best to climb the rankings.”he insists.
In addition to the Coupe de France, no matter what, the N1 club will very soon move on to other interesting events, in particular in class 2 with the Tour du Loir-et-Cher. Ronde de l’Oise is also one of the priorities. In the meantime, of course, the championship of France, during which it is not forbidden to hope that Kevin Le Counf or Axel Yuens will win the title. “But all the races and all the victories would be nice to take. We just need to keep that good momentum going. We have felt that the team has been picking up momentum since March and I am convinced that we will continue to see the Dunkirk players ahead.”.