Peron crashes out on stage 3 in Belgium as Kopecky pushes on

14 June 2024

A day of mixed fortunes unfolded for Team Novo Nordisk on stage three of the Baloise Belgium Tour with team captain Andrea Peron crashing heavily and Matyas Kopecky missing out on the top placings despite a strong ride.

Not much action occurred in the first half of the stage with the peloton content to hold a steady pace behind the seven rider breakaway and until the first passage of the finish line with 90km to go.

“We were altogether, riding well until the finishing circuits in Scherpenheuvel – Zichem,” said Kopecky. “Then as expected the race came alive and the pace almost doubled. I felt really good again today, great legs and on the second lap and had to control myself to not make any stupid mistakes like trying to attack and then blowing up.”

“On the last cobbled sections some guys were trying to go and I was third wheel with a very strong impulse to go, but the group was still big and with 12km left to race I knew it was too far out. In the final I was ok, but I knew it would be a hard one for me and  I was just outside the ten.”

Peron was sitting further back from Kopecky on the final lap, making his way back towards the front when he was caught in a seven rider, high speed pile up and hit the deck hard.

“I couldn’t do anything about it, especially at that speed,” said Peron. “There was a movement to avoid what looked like a hole in the road and I moved too and the next thing I’m down and sliding with some other guys.”

“It’s never good to crash, but I’m lucky to have not broken anything. I’m banged up, lots of road rash, but the recovery should be quick and fingers crossed I’ll be ready for Slovakia.” 

Photo credits: Sprint Cycling Agency

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