Hofstetter takes Coupe de France title

While Germany's Nico Denz (AG2R La Mondiale) rode to his first professional victory at the Tour de Vendée on Saturday, it was Cofidis' Hugo Hofstetter who took the overall victory in the season-long Coupe de France race series.

Hofstetter went into the last of the 15 'French Cup' races with a 30-point lead over second placed Samuel Dumoulin – Denz's AG2R teammate – who was the only rider who could mathematically still catch the 24-year-old Frenchman.

Consistency had been the order of the day for Hofstetter this year, who led the competition going into the final round despite not having won any of the previous rounds of the Coupe de France, which started at the end of January with the Grand Prix La Marseillaise, which was won by AG2R's Alexandre Geniez.

"I always want to win – even when I'm playing board games," Hoftstetter told the newspaper Ouest-France ahead of the final round.

"What we definitely won't do is chase any breakaways, because we need to make sure that Dumoulin doesn't finish in the top two, which is what he'd have to do to beat me" he continued, explaining the points situation, and how he intended to get the better of the three-time Coupe de France champion.

And while it was the case that Hofstetter again didn't win, with Denz taking the Tour de Vendée win from Cibel-Cebon's Lennert Teugels and Vorarlberg's Gian Friesecke, Hofstetter's 25th place, with Dumoulin down in 43rd, meant that the Cofidis rider retained his 30-point lead to take the overall title with 151 points to Dumoulin's 121, adding to his stage win at the Tour de l'Ain in May, and podium finishes at the Nokere Coerse, the GP de Denain and Cholet-Pays de la Loire this season.

Hofstetter's Cofidis teammate, Christophe Laporte, finished third overall in the Coupe de France with 103 points.

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