The one-day road race championships in Herning, Denmark provided an exciting victory for Team KATUSHA ALPECIN’S Alexander Kristoff on Sunday. The Norwegian rider sprinted in for gold, just edging out Italy’s Elia Viviani in a photo finish for the 241.2k race. Kristoff will wear the blue and white jersey signifying his championship status for the next year.
“I am happy to wear this jersey for a year as no one has seen it these last 12-months because Peter Sagan held it but also the rainbow jersey,” Alexander Kristoff explained.
“We had a strong Norwegian team here and Edvald (Boasson Hagen) did a really good attack in the end where he almost won, so we had a good tactic there. We saw in the other races that late attacks made it to the final so we thought to try with Edvald. He’s a strong guy and it almost worked. He was only caught with 300 meters to go and then I managed to take the sprint,” said Kristoff.
“Typically there is a strong lead-out for Viviani so I started a little bit earlier than he did. I went to the right side and he tried to come to the inside. It was a small hole and I didn’t let him take the hole. We were sprinting next to each other but he didn’t really have the space to pass me. At the end we were really close. I think he was very disappointed but I don’t feel I did anything wrong as my sprint was more or less straight. I am happy to be the winner and to win with such a small margin is always thrilling,” said Alexander Kristoff. A quick review of the finish by race judges gave Kristoff the win by a tire-width.
Behind Viviani’s silver medal was Moreno Hofland (Netherlands) for the bronze. All 3 received the same time of 5:41:10 (42.419 km/h).
The racing season is far from over and Alexander has more goals ahead: “My next goal is the world championships. My next races are the Arctic Race of Norway, Hamburg, Plouay and Britain. It is enough races to try to win at the championships in Bergen.” The world championships will take place from September 17-24 in Kristoff’s native Norway.