Boonen Wins Stage 4 of Tour of Qatar 2014
For those who thought Tom Boonen was no longer a master of sprints, the Belgian delivered a convincing answer in stage four of the 2014 Tour of Qatar.
the fastest races of my life," Boonen explained. "I remember a race like this at Paris-Nice a few years ago, but today was another level of fast. As a team we never tried to split the group. We stayed united to avoid dangers on the road. Everybody survived through the first part of the race. We stayed in front and we never tried to make the race harder than what it already was with the wind. So, we stuck together and maintained some control."
"Near the finish I had the perfect leadout, especially from Andrew Fenn. He did a very good job. He stayed cool and calm, and he led me in the right position. Then I let Greipel go because Roelandts went early, which forced Greipel to start slow and use energy to increase his speed. So I jumped on his wheel, waited until the last moment and tactically it was a nice sprint."
Terpstra remains in control in the general classification and now has a 17 second lead over teammate Boonen and a 20 second lead over Jurgen Roelandts. Tomorrow’s penultimate stage takes place in the north of Qatar. Thanks to his second stage victory, Boonen now leads the points classification. Guillaume Van Keirsbulck remains the best young rider.
"The next two days it will be hard again," Boonen explained. "Probably less windy, but we have to stay focused and pay attention to all the details. Niki (Terpstra) and I are really well placed in the general classification, so we will try to defend his position. Concerning me, I am really happy about this Tour of Qatar and it's nice to reward the team with a victory after a hard day at the office."