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Baldato Takes Strange Stage 2 At de Panne

Eugeen Peelman reports on 3 days of De Panne from Belgium… Fabio Baldato (I) wins the very very strange second tour of the 3 days of the Panne. The second stage will go in history as a tour full of troubles because the riders refused to climb up the Kemmelberg, which is a very dangerous “mountain”, especially the way going down. More about this today’s report …

Fabio Baldato – Just a blur at the finish line…

Today 151 riders start at 10.25 am in Zottegem, heading to Koksijde, for a distance of 208 km. 26 riders didn’t start this morning, Museeuw is one of them, he’s ill and is now worried for Sunday. Not only Museeuw is ill, but almost his whole equip Quickstep-Davitamon.

After 43 kms tour, 3 riders attack, TROUVE (B), VAN LANDSCHOOT (B) and BECKE (D). They got a maximum distance of 5 minutes before the main pack. But at the last climb up this day, the troubles started. The 3 leaders climbed up the Kemmelberg but the main pack refused and took the easier way down under. They were stopped by the direction of the tour and had to give the 3 leaders again 5 minutes ahead (the regalement of the tour says that when riders refuse following the parcours, they have to leave the tour, of course they can’t do this because otherwise tomorrow only 3 riders start the tour).

On 22 km before end the main pack comes by the 3 leaders and the whole main pack sprints by a very high speed to the finish where Fabio BALDATO is the fastest and wins this tour.

1. F. Baldato (I) 228 km 6u18’57”
2. G. Lцwik (NL)
3. J. Casper (F)
4. S. Van Dijck (NL)
5. A. Loddo (I)

Classement after the second tour :

1. G. Bortolami (I)
2. B. Voskamp (NL) 1”
3. F. Baldato (I) 35”
4. G. Lцwik (NL) 40”
5. D. Pierie (I) 45”

Tomorrow morning the riders start at 9 am for a straight etappe with start and finish in De Panne. In the afternoon there’s a time trial of 13,7 kms and the start is at 2.30 pm (start and finish in De Panne)

E. Peelman

See more of Eugeen’s photos at his website Koersfotos

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