By Jean-François Quénet
At 30, Raivis Belohvosciks isn't finished. He might have spent four years in a series of small teams (Marlux, Chocolade Jacques and Universal Caffè), but he landed in Nantes with a smile on his face on Saturday because he had just signed a two-year contract with Saunier Duval-Prodir the day before. His former director sportif at Lampre, Pietro Algeri, hasn't forgotten the gentleman and father of three from Latvia, who rode superbly on several occasions, including a second place behind Lance Armstrong at the GP des Nations in 2000.
"I'm delighted to win this race," a happy Belohvosciks said. "I've come here many times, I love the course here. It's very well organized and I really like the people who welcome me here regularly."
Last year, the Latvian rider travelled the whole day before and waited for nine hours for a lift in from Paris airport. He came fourth the next day, but decided that he would organise himself in a better way next year. He did. Two hours before the start, he asked for a heavier lenticular back wheel and found a Corima. "That made me gain 30 seconds," he said before the arrival of Vandborg, who rode only 27 seconds slower than him.
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