T-Mobile's Bas Gilling is a man with a mission - to prove himself as a pro cyclist. So far it hasn't been easy. His second year in the "Big leagues" has been a tough one for the 23-year-old Dutchman.
His goal this year was to do well in the spring classics and perhaps a stage win in one of the smaller stage races. He has had a few good moments, but overall, "The consistency is missing," he says critically.
He also had some bad luck: a crash in Dwars Door Vlaanderen, a bout of food poisoning before the Vuelta a Catalunya, and a wasp sting that gave him a swollen eye for a number of days.
The Eneco tour seemed like the perfect stage for him, and the prologue on Wednesday couldn't have been placed better, only 25 km from his hometown. "I'll have lots of family members, friends and fans along the roadside cheering me on," he said. In addition, he likes prologues. "I'm good at prologue-style time trials. I have special training sessions for them, for example, more interval training."
Perhaps he put too much pressure on himself: he finished 117th, nearly 29 seconds behind the winner.