Pedersen claims BinckBank Tour stage 3 sprint

Mads Pedersen (Trek-Segafredo) came from behind to win the rain-soaked third stage at the BinckBank Tour around Aalter in Belgium, surviving the twisting final kilometres on concrete roads to win convincingly.

After being protected and piloted by his teammates during the technical and downright dangerous finale, the former world champion made sure he was on Jasper Philipsen’s wheel and then kicked past him down the centre of the road to win by a bike length.

Philipsen finished second with Pascal Ackermann (Bora-Hansgrohe) third after leading out the sprint.

Pedersen is on the same time as stage 1 winner Philipsen but took the race leader’s green jersey thanks to a better stage placing on stage 3.

Jonas Rickaert (Alpecin-Fenix) was last to be caught from the break of the day just 2.5km from the finish and thanks to taking the three three-second time bonuses at the Golden Kilometre, he moved up to third overall at seven seconds.

After changes to the race route to avoid the COVID-19 restrictions on sport in the Netherlands, Friday’s stage is an 8.1km individual time trial around Riemst. The BinckBank Tour ends on Saturday with a 188km Flemish stage to Gerardsbergen that includes the Kapelmuur and the Bosberg climbs.

Pedersen rode strongly at the recent Tour de France but had only won a stage of the Tour de Pologne since winning his world title in Yorkshire in 2019. He hugged his staff and teammates in celebration of his victory and confirmed he is targeting overall victory at the BinckBank Tour before taking aim at the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix.   

"It was hectic but my team has worked very well. We took our responsibility from the start and I was able to finish it. That is very nice," he told Belgian television.

"It's not that I like such rainy conditions but I don't mind racing in the rain. You just have to accept it."

"The classification is a goal. Tomorrow's time trial is short and that is good for me, then on Saturday I will try to achieve a good final classification in Geraardsbergen."

How it unfolded

After a day off following the cancellation of stage 2 in the Netherlands and changes to other stages, the riders were happy to be back racing on Thursday despite grey skies and heavy rain in Belgium.

To avoid the Netherlands' COVID-19 restrictions, the revised stage covered a Kermesse-style circuit and seven laps around the Aalter countryside between Bruges and Gent for a total of 156km of racing.

The rain dampened the mood in the peloton but a break quickly formed with Oscar Riesebeek (Alpecin-Fenix), Pim Ligthart (Total Direct Energie) and Kenneth Van Rooy (Sport Vlaanderen-Baloise) jumping away. They opened a gap and were soon joined by Jonas Rickaert and Adrien Petit (Total Direct Energie) to create a quintet off the front.

After two laps around Aalter, the break had a lead of 2:50 as the UAE Team Emirates, Trek-Segafredo and Bora-Hansgrohe lead the steady chase thinking of the sprint finish.

With 50km to go, Jelle Wallays (Lotto Soudal) tried to go across to the attack but was marked new Belgian national champion Dries De Bondt, who was protecting his Alpecin-Fenix

teammates in the escape. Milan Menten (Sport Vlaanderen - Baloise) also went along for the ride to protect Van Rooy and irritate Wallays.

The five lead by 1:20 but after Rickaert swept-up all three of the Golden Kilometre sprints, the move fell apart. 

Only Rickaert pushed on alone on the road back to Aalters but he was swept up with 2.5km to go after some hard work by Trek-Segafredo to give Pedersen his chance of victory.

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Brief Results
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Mads Pedersen (Den) Trek-Segafredo 3:26:11
2Jasper Philipsen (Bel) UAE Team Emirates
3Pascal Ackermann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe
4Danny Van Poppel (Ned) Circus-Wanty Gobert
5Tim Merlier (Bel) Alpecin-Fenix
6Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Deceuninck-Quickstep
7Christophe Laporte (Fra) Cofidis
8Florian Senechal (Fra) Deceuninck-Quickstep
9Lorrenzo Manzin (Fra) Total Direct Energie
10Sep Vanmarcke (Bel) EF Pro Cycling
Swipe to scroll horizontally
General classification after stage 3
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Mads Pedersen (Den) Trek-Segafredo 6:25:21
2Jasper Philipsen (Bel) UAE Team Emirates
3Jonas Rickaert (Bel) Alpecin-Fenix 0:00:07
4Pascal Ackermann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe 0:00:08
5Mike Teunissen (Ned) Team Jumbo-Visma 0:00:11
6Mathieu Van der Poel (Ned) Alpecin-Fenix 0:00:13
7Yves Lampaert (Bel) Deceuninck-Quickstep
8Danny Van Poppel (Ned) Circus-Wanty Gobert 0:00:16
9Tim Merlier (Bel) Alpecin-Fenix
10Lorrenzo Manzin (Fra) Total Direct Energie

Thank you for reading 5 articles in the past 30 days*

Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read any 5 articles for free in each 30-day period, this automatically resets

After your trial you will be billed £4.99 $7.99 €5.99 per month, cancel anytime. Or sign up for one year for just £49 $79 €59

Join now for unlimited access

Try your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

Stephen Farrand
Head of News

Stephen is the most experienced member of the Cyclingnews team, having reported on professional cycling since 1994. He has been Head of News at Cyclingnews since 2022, before which he held the position of European editor since 2012 and previously worked for Reuters, Shift Active Media, and CyclingWeekly, among other publications.

Latest on Cyclingnews