Strong Kooij rushes to third place in hectic sprint UAE Tour

Strong Kooij rushes to third place in hectic sprint UAE Tour

Olav Kooij finished third in the second bunch sprint of the UAE Tour. In a fast, chaotic sprint the sprinter from Team Visma | Lease a Bike battled for a long time for the win, but in the end he saw how Tim Merlier took his second stage win.

After the mountain stage to the Jebel Jais, it was up to Team Visma | Lease a Bike in the fourth stage to put sprinter Olav Kooij in position. On the long, wide and straight roads towards the Palm Jumeirah peninsula, the sprinters' teams quickly took control. Two attackers were allowed to ride ahead for a while, but were swallowed up again well before the finish in Dubai Harbour.

"I felt I had the momentum"

Olav Kooij

The sprint preparation went somewhat chaotic due to a crash about three kilometers from the finish line. Kooij eventually found his way to the front and entered the sprint early after some clever and agile moves. He stayed in the lead for a long time, but had to acknowledge his superiority to Merlier just before the line. "I decided to start my sprint pretty early, because I felt I had the momentum," Kooij said. "However, at that point it was still quite far to the finish line, so unfortunately despite my lead I couldn't hold on until the end."

The WorldTour race in the Middle East continues tomorrow and Saturday with most likely new sprint stages. Sunday the stage race ends with a mountain stage to the ascent of Jebel Hafeet.


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