Look a minute at the amused faces of our riders posing with the cheerful mascot in the team presentation at Ronde van Drenthe...Well, let us tell you this: there were no happy faces to be found in the 5 hours and 206 km that followed.No wonder when you face a Dutch highly technical pave race and a nightmarish unfortunate series of mishaps - from flats, crashes and mechanicals - at the worst timing.Yeah, Our struggles in the classic series are certainly on - but this time, the bad luck was certainly reaching a new level.The story in the pics...And Hey. We will keep fighting. Do not doubt it. #yallaacademy
Fighting from Km zero. The plan was to get into a breakaway and indeed there were repeated attempts. Our Israeli Aviv Yechezkel was the one that tried a few times but could not make it. Things turned worse for him. He crashed and could not get back.
Our Canadian Guillaume Boivin is certainly the most consistent performer in the classics so far but also haunted by a weird series of mishaps. But yesterday he could not survive the split toward the end and finished only 74th. Overall, the feeling in the team is we are going forward albeit not in the pace we expected. " We expected to get better a bit faster" said the Team manager Ran Margaliot.
The young American Tyler Williams was doing fine most of the race but when it came to the hard selection in its last part could not find that extra you need to stay with the best. he helped with getting bottles to his teammates but could not survive the cut. regarding all the crashes and flats his teammates were suffering, he said: " that's how those races go. You can make your own luck a bit but not all the time".
Maybe one of the least lucky today was our Israeli national champion who was pretty aggressive in the front all day. " I felt good" he said . "Even comfortable in all this pave and mayhem. " but then came a big pit in the road that i never saw... a crash... broken seat... chain... it took so long till i got a new bike and I spent so much time chasing and then took a wrong turn out of the course"... and it was over for me. Really a mess. I feel bad". no wonder.
Our highest ranked Krists Neilands were positioned very well but then punctured... Our AustralianJason Lowndes - Supporters suffered from 3 flats... the last one took him out of the race... and on and on... But the end result was still not satisfactory. " I think we face difficulties adapting to those races" admitted sports director Kjell Carlström. "But we have a lot of bad luck too and mechanical in the worst moments".