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Echoes

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GP Plouay - Sunday 27 August 2017
« on: August 26, 2017, 09:51 »
Brittany is the most cycling-friendly French region and the Plouay GP is testament of that.

The Plouay parish is under patronage of Saint Ouen. During the patron celebrations in August many sporting events were organised including a cycling race which in 1931 became the Plouay GP!

Held uninterruptedly since but in war time, the Plouay GP was open to pros in 1977 and also to foreign riders: Joop Zoetemelk *nl , Frits Pirard  *nl , Stephen Roche  *ie or Sean Kelly  *ie performed there or won the race, though they raced for French teams.

One man did a lot to internationalise the race: Jean-Yves Perron. Organiser from 1975 until he passed away from cancer at age 53 on Valentine Day in 2000. His other main campaign was the organisation of the World Championships in that same year 2000. Sadly, he passed away too soon to see it. :( The Plouay circuit is now called the "Circuit Jean-Yves Perron".

Something should be said: In 2000, the Plouay GP (I'm not even talking about the worlds) gathered 300,000 spectators in Plouay while the town includes 5,455 inhabitants (12,260 in a broader sense) !!!


At Perron's funeral, Gaston Granvalet, President of the Celebrations Committee (Comité des Fêtes) said that such a man was impossible to replace but that "our great strength is an organisation relying on a pyramid of voluntary workers." Every year about 600 of them.  :cool

These pieces of info comes from an article from Libération (in 2000), which is full of allegation, not surprising from this cycling-hating Parisian newspaper  :angry : http://www.liberation.fr/sports/2000/10/14/plouay-une-petite-ville-dopee-au-velo_340840

"Plouay, A Small Town Doped with Cycling" "put the bicycle on God's right side" "spectators are prosternating in front of champions" "mystery of cycling's faith", and of course reminds all the dark side of the seventies, "stimulant doping and race fixing" etc.

Good thing to know. Hein Verbruggen did not like Perron.  :P :D

Since 1982 the race has been sponsored by newspaper Ouest-France, hence the other name GP Ouest-France.

Since last year the race stopped being a lap race but more an in-line race crossing all Brittany and got the ugly name "Bretagne Classic" [yes in English in the original version.  :S]. 2008 winner Pierrick Fédrigo stopped his career there saying it was "a personal choice" to do so.  :) He's Breton.

Last year's edition propelled Oliver Naesen towards the World's top of single-day racing. He won the race, partly thanks to Greg Van Avermaet who countered Rui Costa on the Côte de Ty-Marrec and refused to take turn in order not to compromise Oliver's breakaway up front while knowing he had no chance himself. Naesen went on to be 2nd at the Lowlands Tour, at the Eurométropole Tour (which he should've won after Groenewegen's non-DQ) and to mix it up with the best at the Tour of Flanders.
 



(Gazet van Antwerpen - 29 Aug 2016)

Oliver Naesen had just won a kermess in Erpe-Mere the Thursday before in a 7-man group outsprinting his intrinsically faster younger brother Lawrence.
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Do you know what pleases me most? That names such as Tom Boonen or Greg Van Avermaet came straight to congratulate me. I'm also always glad when a fellow countryman wins but all of a sudden in a World Tour race you are the focus of attention yourself.
 

Then is the story of the "Pearl Fishers" ("Parelvissers"), the training group that Greg Van Avermaet created with his cousins the Ongena brothers.

Oliver likes long races. The longer the better. With 50km to go he was still at the back of the peloton with Tim Wellens got back to the head of it with him as the early breakaway was about to get caught. He was surprised to see how smoothly he could get back in action and that is how he immediately countered neo pro French Guillaume Martin  #wanty and felt straight he was the strongest. After completing his first Tour of France he feels like he can ride faster than used to.


------

This year the race will climb the Mur de Bretagne:




Greg Van Avermaet is present for World Tour points, which he could not get in Hamburg last week, while he was in good shape (32nd). His BMC team will have Dylan Teuns, Silvan Dillier, Nathan Van Hooydonck, Michael Schär, Danilo Wyss and Jempy Drucker and Amaël Moinard.

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We come with a very strong team. The finale is a bit complicated but the condition is there. It should be great to make a top10

Startlist: http://cyclingpro.net/spaziociclismo/startlist/bretagne-classic-ouest-france-2017-la-startlist/

The race will be broadcast by France 3 among others.

 
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  • "Paris-Roubaix is the biggest cycling race in the world, bigger than the Tour de France, bigger than any other bike race" (Sir Bradley Wiggins)

    t-72

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    Re: GP Plouay - Sunday 27 August 2017
    « Reply #1 on: August 27, 2017, 10:26 »
    #katusha Katusha's #champeu Aleksander Kristoff competing with a new bike

    https://twitter.com/katushacycling/status/901736430589890560

    He'll be competing but he has just been through a massive block of hard training, his prioritized race this fall  is the World Championship road race. Not a favorite here!
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  • t-72

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    Re: GP Plouay - Sunday 27 August 2017
    « Reply #2 on: August 27, 2017, 21:02 »
    On second thought maybe he is in shape too early  :lol

    #sky Viviani the sprinter to beat at this moment. Better keep him out of the grand tours, great move by Sky  :cool

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  • Echoes

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    Re: GP Plouay - Sunday 27 August 2017
    « Reply #3 on: August 28, 2017, 09:01 »
    Nice performance by Sep Vanmarcke. On other boards he surprised a lot of posters. So just a reminder: the first great performance by Sep Vanmarcke with the pros, when he made a name for himself is the 2010 Ghent-Wevelgem when he was second to Bernhard Eisel but outsprinted Philippe Gilbert who was third and a doped George Hincapie. He was aged 21, a neopro and still racing for Topsport Vlaanderen.  :)

    Two years later he outsprinted Tom Boonen at the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad.

    If you can outsprint both Gilbert and Boonen in your early years, you have a decent sprint.


    Greg Van Avermaet got himself locked up in the sprint but still managed to just nail a top10 place which he came for. You could see that he did not come for the win. He did not even attack.

    I did not follow everything. I was both on Schaal Sels and this and chose to give Schaal Sels priority. Well Sels was on my laptop and Plouay on the telly.  :P It was fun to watch two races at once. Worst thing is that they had more or less the same schedule. Only in Plouay they race the last 10k faster than at the Schaal Sels. :D Until the last 10k it looked like Sels was going to finish earlier. But then when only 7k remained at Sels, only 6k remained in Plouay. The Plouay peloton overtook the peloton in Merksem. Afterwards they always kept a 1k lead.


    I just saw that Silvan Dillier was in the break (to give more comfort to Greg behind) and little Cyrille Gautier was very aggressive  :).
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  • « Last Edit: August 28, 2017, 09:13 by Echoes »

     

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