We’re heading to the start of the Tour de France where, unsurprisingly, none of our #youngdudes Owain Doull (Sky), Ruben Guerreiro (Trek-Segafredo) and Lennard Hofstede (Sunweb) will be riding. However, they’ve all been busy in June which culminated in last week-end’s national championships. But how have they all fared? Read on…
Owain was part of the victorious Team Sky, along with Jon Dibben, Tao Geoghegan Hart, Danny van Poppel and Elia Viviani, who triumphed in the inaugural Hammer Series, which went down to the wire in Limburg with victory only decided in the final metres as Sky repassed Sunweb ahead of the final corner to come out on top of an eight-man toe-to-toe sprint.
Next up, Owain rode the Tour de Suisse and achieved his best result to date as he finished 10th in an high quality bunch sprint on stage five which was won by Peter Sagan.
This set Owain up nicely for the national championships held on the Isle of Man. Sadly he suffered a mechanical in the individual time-trial but was a key part of a concerted Sky effort to win the road race with Peter Kennaugh, who finished fourth on a day of entertaining racing. One of Owain’s next races looks to be the RideLondon-Surrey Classic on the 20th July, which this year will have WorldTour status. Owain’s ridden it twice before, in 2015 for Team Wiggins and in 2013 for Team GB, when he finished 11th. He commented:
The first year I did it was crazy, both years actually. The weather was really nice, it’s central London and you ride down The Mall. It’s as iconic as it gets and it amazes me, the amount of crowds that come out to watch.
I think as a race, it has a really good balance as well. There’s a good mix – it’s hilly but it’s one of those races that can go either way, depending on how it’s raced. I think that would be a pretty cool race to do this year.
You’ll have to tune in to our July #youngdudes update to see if Owain made the team for the race.
Ruben also raced in the Hammer series where his team finished fourth on stage three, and tenth overall. He then had a bit of a well-deserved break ahead of his national championships, back home in Portugal.
On a course which suited his climbing and sprinting abilities, Ruben won the prestigious title – pretty amazing result in his first year as a professional. Obviously, he was delighted with his maiden victory in the elite men’s championships in Gondomar::
The course was similar to Liege-Bastogne-Liege, and the last 800 meters were uphill at 9%, really steep. I got in a breakaway of 17 riders with 80 kilometers to go. In the end, there were a lot of attacks, and we were only seven coming into the last kilometer.
I attacked with 500 meters to go and went full gas to the finish line. It was super hard, mentally and physically, and I am super happy to win it. I got good form after Belgium [Tour], and I prepared really well for this race, and it worked out.
The team’s sponsors were also delighted, as Segafredo has an important share of the Portuguese market. I think I can hear the clink of coffee cups all round!
After a successful May, Lennard’s been back on team duties during June. Lennard rode the Dauphine and helped team-mate Phil Bauhaus take victory on stage 5, his maiden WorldTour victory. It must have been very satisfying to be a part of that victory.
Like Owain and Ruben, Lennard was in action over the weekend and assisted teammate Ramon Sinkeldam take the honours in the Dutch national road race where, thanks to a flawless lead-out, Sinkeldam was able to finish off a successful day in a photo finish finale. Post-race, Sinkeldam said:
This is an amazing victory for me and the team. The guys did an amazing job throughout the whole day and executed our plan to perfection. I was able to stay fresh for the finish and could finish off the team’s hard work to take the win. It’s amazing to have the support of the staff and team to be able to sprint to the win today.
Lennard’s going to be taking part in a high altitude camp in July which means he’ll be even stronger for his forthcoming races.
Giro #youngdude Mads Pedersen
As none of our #youngdudes rode the Giro d’Italia, we followed one of the youngest riders in the race, 21-year-old Mads Pedersen who has become the Danish road race champion. Yet another Trek-Segafredo young gun who has become national champion at his first attempt. Congratulations are most certainly in order!
We’ll be keeping a close eye on Owain, Ruben and Lennard as the season progresses. Look out for our race updates and follow their results on Twitter #youngdudes.
Header image: Mads Pedersen, Elite National Road Race Champion of Denmark ©Lars Ronbog / FrontZoneSport via Getty Images