At the end of two spectacular and very difficult stages, French rider Nicolas Prodhomme has won the first edition of the ORLEN NATIONS GRAND PRIX. Denmark’s Andreas Kron is right behind him, having won today’s stage (Bukovina Resort – Bukowina Tatrzanska 113 Km) but coming in just 9” shy of success in the general classification. Belgium’s Ilan Van Wilder made it to the third step of the final podium, 26” back.
On a spectacular and technical route around Bukowina Tatrzanska, the riders in the race started giving battle from the very first kilometres of the stage. In the first part the group was pulled by the French National Team, which left very little leeway for those riders brave enough to try an attack. Italy’s Alexande Konychev and Poland’s Szmon Krawczyk were the stars of the most significant break of the day, attacking on the second lap of the circuit in Bukowina Tatrzanska. Despite their best efforts, the two got caught by the group with 14 km to go to the finish line. The main event of the day happened at 6 km from the end: the leader of the general classification, Clément Champoussin, was forced to stop for a puncture and thus had to cede the final victory. On the final hills that led to the arrival, Denmark’s Andreas Kron launched the decisive attack, winning with arms raised at the finish line in Bukowina Tatrzanska.
“I’m happy for my victory and that of the team, even though today wasn’t so great because my team mate and leader of the GC Clement Champoussin got a puncture just a few kilometres from the finish line and so he had to surrender the final victory. We worked hard all day long and everything seemed to be under control up until this unfortunate episode,” says Nicolas Prodhomme.
“Today’s stage was really very hard and I am elated that I managed to win this fraction,” says the winner of today’s stage, Andreas Kron. “I gave it everything I had up to the very last metres but unfortunately I wasn’t able to capture the leader’s jersey. However, I still get the immense satisfaction of having won the stage.”
“In this first edition of the ORLEN NATIONS GRAND PRIX we managed to finish a project that we had in mind, an event with two gripping and spectacular stages,” says Czeslaw Lang. “It was really nice to see these young athletes give battle from the start to the finish, with attacks and counter attacks right up until the last kilometres. I’d like to thank the Bukovina Resort and all our partners for having supported this event, especially the title sponsor ORLEN. I can already confirm that we will be back in 2020 for the second edition of the ORLEN NATIONS GRAND PRIX.”
Bukovina Resort – Bukowina Tatrzanska, 113 km (Stage II)
1) Andreas Kron (Denmark) 02:59:28
2) Ethan Hayter (Great Britain) 0:12″
3) Ilan Van Wilder (Belgium) 0:12″
4) Daniel Savini (Italy) 0:12″
5) Mauri Vansevenant (Belgium) 0:12″
Final General Classification
1) Nicolas Prodhomme (France) 3:40:00
2) Andreas Kron (Denmark) 0:09″
3) Ilan Van Wilder (Belgium) 0:26″
4) Mauri Vansevenant (Belgium) 0:26″
5) Unai Cuadrado Ruiz De Gauna (Spain) 0:27″
Belgium takes home the team classification.
With the points garnered here in Poland at the ORLEN NATIONS GRAND PRIX, Denmark now leads the classification for the UCI NATIONS CUP.