Bolton Equities Black Spoke’s Aaron Gate triumphs at the ΔΕΗ International Cycling Tour of Greece – BHS-PL Beton Bornholm’s Emil Toudal sprints to stage 5 victory

Bolton Equities Black Spoke’s Aaron Gate triumphs at the ΔΕΗ International Cycling Tour of Greece – BHS-PL Beton Bornholm’s Emil Toudal sprints to stage 5 victory

The last act of the ΔΕΗ International Cycling Tour of Greece, from Kalampaka to Ioannina, was affected by a dense fog, but had a clear winner at both the queen stage and the general classification.

Despite following the breakaway early in the race, BHS-PL Beton Bornholm's Emil Toudal, led a 20-strong pack that entered the final straight in the beautiful city of Ioannina.

I had great legs the whole week but didn’t have the chance to show off. We had Nils taking the jersey and that has been the priority for us.


“I’ve been hoping to be able to do something and I did it today. Crazy!


“I was in the break all day, but it came together in the end and I had one teammate, Emil (Iwersen) who was fighting for the white jersey. We discussed that if there was a moment I could go and try to sprint and in the last km I saw that moment", said the Dane, who won the first pro stage of his career.

If Toudal had to work hard to win the stage, BHS-PL Beton Bornholm riders simply had to execute a basic plan: to bring Aaron Gate safe home and claim victory in the overall standings of the Hellenic Tour.

The winner thanked his teammates and the Greek fans for their support:

Definitely stage one was the key to victory. We have to give some credit to our sports director Franky (Van Haebroucke) who called stage one as the hardest of the Tour, the one to make the difference in the general classification.


“The boys did an absolute perfect job for me and rode perfectly ‘cause everybody was really attacking to try and get the cyan jersey.


It’s great I won my first professional Tour in Europe in such a beautiful country. I am pretty happy.


I’ve got a lot of people asking for photos and handshakes and it’s great the support of the local community. It’s been impressive the entire week how many people have come to spectate, so thanks to everybody for coming out to watch”.

Since Gate opened that big gap on Day 1, it was obvious that the GC would only change in the final stage. Nevertheless, the stage was neutralized right after the Katara pass due to dense fog, which seemed to favour the New Zealanders’ plan.

The race

The first breakaway took place after 15 km by a five-men group formed by Svestad (Team Coop), Hellemose (Trek-Segafredo), Mannion (Human Powered Health), Toudal (BHS Bornholm) and Fouche (Bolton Equities Black Spoke). In the first intermediate sprint in Meteora, Toudal got the maximum of points.

Periklis Ilias made an attempt to fill the gap and by kilometre 44 along with Chirico (Drone Hopper - Androni Giocattoli), Wright (Mg.K Vis-Color for Peace-VPM), Meijers (Terengganu Polygon) and Tzortzakis, they formed the chase group that trailed by 1:50.

A few kilometres later, only Meijers and Ilias remained in the chase group, but at the 69th kilometre the race was neutralised right after the first KoM.

On the way to Katara, Svestad broke away and bagged 10 points from the cat 1 KoM, matching Fuche’s total. The New Zealander, who wore the orange jersey, was second in the first ascent.

Following an 8 km downhill ride, the race resumed with Svestad attacking again and building a 1’50’’ gap. The Norwegian won the last KoM as well and secured the orange jersey with 28 points. Fouche finished second and dropped back to his second mission: aid Gate to win the Tour.

The difference Svestad had from the chasing group awarded him victory in the second intermediate sprint as well at Lake Pamvotida. The Norwegian, despite his brave effort to stay up front until the end, gradually dropped and in the last kilometre was caught by the chase group.

Toudal entered the last straight first and stayed there until the end, leaving behind US champion Joseph Rosskopf of Human Powered Health and Hakon Aallust of Team Coop.

Although he did not score any points in the final stage, BHS-PL Beton Bornholm's Nils Broge secured the red jersey, while Caja Rural's Jon Barrenetxea defended the white jersey.





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