Andalusian sprinter from Movistar Team takes eighth podium finish in 2014 at Tournai's opening sprint in the Tour de Wallonie, after attacks by Sütterlin in final section
A short, flat 147km parcours from Frasnes to Tournai, the opening stage in the 35th Tour de Wallonie (2.HC), saw Juanjo Lobato coming close for the eighth time in 2014 to a first victory in Movistar Team colours.
Only Belgian champion Jens Debusschere (LTB), first race leader in the country’s French-speaking region, and Gianni Meersman (OPQ) could beat the telephone squad’s top sprinter. The Blues, absent into the three-man escape that led almost the whole stage, seeked for the late attacks with German youngster Jasha Sütterlin, without success.
A similar menu, with no less than six climbs -including the Côte de la Citadelle in the capital, Namur- in the second part of the 193km course from Péronnes to Perwez, yet with flat roads in the finale, should offer a second chance to Lobato -counting on the 4″ bonus taken today for third overall- and his team-mates.