Rainy But Energetic Opener at Arctic Race of Norway
10 August 2017
Race: Arctic Race of Norway, stage 1
Start/Finish: Engenes (Andorja)/Narvik, Norway
Distance: 156 kilometers
NARVIK, NORWAY – Martijn Verschoor started his first Arctic Tour of Norway on Thursday from the comfortable reclining chair of a boat. The Dutch rider and his teammates, along with the rest of the peloton, sat down on a fast ferry in the Harstad harbor and rode 30 scenic minutes to the island of Andorja to begin stage one.
In the race the sun shone brightly for the first hour, but after crossing a mountain pass and descending to the other side, rain began to fall, sending Verschoor and everyone else back to the team cars to find dry, warm clothing for the road to Narvik.
Rival teams took the opportunity to attack, sending seven riders into a breakaway with three minutes advantage, but the team of Norwegian rider Alexander Kristoff came to the front and shut down the gap on the final 10km circuit in Narvik.
Belgium’s Dylan Teuns won the stage ahead of Norway’s August Jensen and the Italian rider Andrea Pasqualon.
Light rain showers will likely continue throughout the Arctic Race of Norway, but the August sunshine and astounding scenery are guaranteed every day. At more than 200km above the Arctic Circle, Narvik is the southernmost point in the race. The sun will rise on Friday at 3:43 AM and will not go down until 10:04 PM.
“This is my third time racing in Norway – twice at the Tour of Norway and this is the first time for me at the Arctic Race. There are fantastic crowds here, even in the rain there are so many people, and it gives a good atmosphere and energy for the race. Especially when you see the fjords, the mountains, the water and the hills. It’s really nice to be here.”
Team Novo Nordisk Sport Director Massimo Podenzana:
“Lots of attacks and counter-attacks in the first hour, but it was a nervous day in the peloton, and the breakaway took a long time to get going. Katusha was controlling the race for Alexander Kristoff, and for sure they will do the same tomorrow to try and guarantee a sprint finish.”
- Dylan Teuns 1st : (BMC Racing Team) : 3:36:14
- August Jensen 2nd : (Team Coop) : 0:02 back
- Andrea Pasqualon 3rd : (Wanty – Groupe Gobert) : st
Team Novo Nordisk Results:
- David Lozano :52nd : 1:22 back
- Charles Planet : 54th : 1:43 back
- Joonas Henttala : 56th : 1:43 back
- Javier Megias : 100th : 5:16 back
- Chris Williams : 110th : 16:32 back
- Martijn Verschoor : 115th : 16:32 back
(Photos: ©Mario Stiehl)