Valognes Gets in the Mix at Dubai Tour

31 January 2017

Race: Dubai Tour, Stage 1

Start/Finish: Dubai/Palm Jumeirah, UAE

Distance: 181 kilometers

Palm Jumeirah, UAE — Two Team Novo Nordisk neo-pro’s made their professional debuts on Stage 1 of the Dubai Tour: Frenchman Quentin Valognes and Italian Umberto Poli.

From the start, Tuesday’s 181-kilometer race served as the ideal stage for a final bunch sprint. Racing under clear skies, a five-man break escaped early into the stage and built up a maximum gap of 4:23. With 10-km remaining, the escapees were caught and the peloton started to increase its pace leading into the finish on the Palm Jumeirah. Throughout the high-speed, hectic finish, Valognes stayed on the wheel of teammate Charles Planet as they fought for position against 10 World Tour teams. In the finish, Marcel Kittel (Quick-Step Floors) took the win with Planet and Valognes coming in 26th and 27th, respectively.

Quentin Valognes

“I learned that we can do it and it’s possible to be up there during a bunch sprint against teams and riders of this caliber. I know we need more experience and I definitely made some mistakes, but my takeaway today is that is possible for me to be there.”

Team Novo Nordisk General Manager Vassili Davidenko

“Year-by-year, it is very noticeable that this team is getting better. They raced today as a team and together fought for top position at the front of the peloton against some very strong riders. They have earned their respect and I am really proud of how today went.”

Team Novo Nordisk continues racing at the Dubai Tour on Wednesday with Stage 2. The flat 186-km race begins at the Dubai International Marine Club and finishes in the Emirate’s capital.



  • 1st: Marcel Kittel (Quick-Step Floors): 4:06:33
  • 2nd: Dylan Groenewegen (Team LottoNL-Jumbo): same time as Kittel
  • 3rd: Mark Cavendish (Dimension Data): same time as Kittel

Team Novo Nordisk Results: 

  • Charles Planet: 26th: same time as Kittel
  • Quentin Valognes: 27th: same time as Kittel
  • David Lozano: 57th: same time as Kittel
  • Joonas Henttala: 59th: same time as Kittel
  • Stephen Clancy: 68th: same time as Kittel
  • Umberto Poli: 86th: same time as Kittel
  • Chris Williams: 98th: 1:37 behind Kittel
  • Gerd de Keijzer: 99th: 1:37 behind Kittel

(Photos: ©TDWSport)

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