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Van Hecke misses out on Ronde podium

Preben Van Hecke (Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator) motors up the Muur

Preben Van Hecke (Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator) motors up the Muur (Image credit: Sirotti)

After yesterday's Ronde van Vlaanderen, Preben Van Hecke (Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator) was quite disappointed that he missed out on a podium spot. It would have been a great achievement for the local rider who rides for a Pro Continental team.

Van Hecke was interviewed by Sporza immediately following the race. Still sweating, he recounted his efforts in which he and his two companions, Sylvain Chavanel (Quick Step) and Manuel Quinziato (Liquigas), were caught only within the last few kilometres. "It's a pity," said Van Hecke. "The Muur was just a little too much for me."

The former Lotto team member often trains on the Muur van Geraardsbergen, the penultimate climb where Stijn Devolder (Quick Step) made his decisive attack. "It is different when you do it after some 240 kilometres," he said. "Still, I was happy to be there, but the Muur was real fast and on top Devolder was gone."

There was still a chance for a podium spot, but the group didn't go too well in the end. Chavanel obviously wasn't interested in going after teammate Devolder in the front. "Maybe with one more guy in the break we could have stayed away," Van Hecke said.

Instead of getting one of his biggest results, Van Hecke now shows up in the results sheets as 25th, belittling the great race he did on Sunday.

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