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Andre Schulze’s 4th place in the Handzame Classic.

The winner of the Belgian one-day race, Handzame Classic (the UCI 1.1 category) is the racer of the team of Donckers Koffie – Jelly Belly, Steve Schets. In a sprinters’ duel he defeated the Dutch cyclist Kenny Van Hummel from Skil-Shimano and his compatriot Nico Eeckhout from the team of An-Post Sean Kelly. The sprint cyclist of the CCC Polsat Polkowice team, the German, Andre Schulze completed the race in the fourth place.

During the second Belgian classic race the cyclists had a route of almost 200 km to ride, from Kortemark to Handzame. The route of that classic race, held for the first time this year, was previously one of the stages of the Driedaagse van West – Vlaanderen race. The profile of the route, where there were as many as 6 ‘stiff’ up-the-hill stretches, and cobbled stretches too, must be considered very tough and demanding. Despite the unfavourable weather conditions, with the strong wind blowing, and the rain, the cyclists had quite an interesting battle.

During the second Belgian classic race the cyclists had a route of almost 200 km to rode, from Kortemark to Handzame. The route of that classic race, held for the first time this year, was previously one of the stages of the Driedaagse van West – Vlaanderen race. The profile of the route, where there were as many as 6 ‘stiff’ up-the-hill stretches, and cobbled stretches too, must be considered very tough and demanding. Despite the unfavourable weather conditions, with the strong wind blowing, and the rainfall, the cyclists had quite an interesting battle.

From the very beginning in the peloton there were numerous attempts to break-away, out of which only four cyclists managed to ride away and gain some advantage. At each uphill stretch the breakaway group increased their advantage and the peloton split into smaller groups that with time joined back together. The break-away foursome cooperating harmoniously quickly gained an advantage reaching at one moment over 6 minutes. The pace increased towards the end of the race, which resulted in a situation where not everybody kept up with the others, and the peloton started to split again. The advantage of the escapees started to decrease and 5 kilometers before the finishing line it was eliminated. At the head a group of 40 cyclists formed, which headed for the finishing line in Handzame with a dozen or so seconds of advantage over the rest. In that group sprint cyclists dominated, lead out by their supporters preparing themselves the best position for the finish.
The Belgian, Steve Schets, who beat Kenny Van Hummel and Nico Eeckhout was the quickest at the finishing line.
Andre Schulze (CCC Polsat Polkowice) finished in the high, fourth place. Sylwester Janiszewski, who was in the leading group of 40 cyclists, crossed the finishing line in the 16th position.
The other cyclists of CCC Polsat Polkowice crossed the finishing line in further places, over 1 minute adrift of the winner of the race.

The results of Handzame Clasic (the UCI 1.1category) , 199.5 km

1. Steve Schets (Donckers Koffie – Jelly Belly)
2. Kenny Van Hummel (Skil-Shimano)
3. Nico Eeckhout (An-Post Sean Kelly)
4. André Schulze (CCC Polsat Polkowice)

16. Sylwester Janiszewski
74. Bartłomiej Matysiak 00:01:04
84. Tomas Smoleń 00:01:33
85. Tomasz Kiendyś
119. Kamil Zieliński 0:02:58