Christophe Laporte is the new European Champion after a nerve-wracking duel with Jumbo-Visma teammates Wout van Aert and Olav Kooij.
In the closing stages of the race for national teams, Laporte broke away from a leading group, including his teammates. The Frenchman’s gap was never more than 10 seconds, but Laporte managed to hold off his attacking teammates in the final metres.
“It’s still hard to believe”, he stammered after clinching the European title. “It was a gruelling race with a spectacular finish. I knew I had the best chance of winning when I got away. I don’t think I could have beaten Wout and Olav in a sprint. I felt good all day, so I decided to go for it. I attacked on instinct. It is excellent to wear the European jersey for a year now. I want to dedicate this victory to my family and also to Nathan. I hope he’ll be proud to see me riding in this jersey.”
“Christophe was just too strong”, Van Aert admitted. “For a moment, I thought we were going to catch him. He was riding pretty strong and still had some energy left. He knows how to choose the right moment. It shows that we are all strong in Jumbo-Visma.”
— NotiCiclismo ➡ 🇱🇺 #SkodaTour (@Noticiclismo1) September 24, 2023