Belgium — German sprinter Marcel Kittel gave his team its first win under its new moniker, Argos-Shimano, with a huge victory at Wednesday’s 100th edition of the Scheldeprijs race in Belgium. Kittel blasted past some of the best sprinters in the world, including American Tyler Farrar and Dutchman Theo Bos, on his Felt F1 team bike to take the win.
Kittel is having a breakout season. The 23-year-old joined an impressive list of former Sheldeprijs winners including current world champion Mark Cavendish, who won it last year, plus Farrar, Alessandro Petacchi and Tom Boonen.
Rainy conditions at the 202km Belgian midweek classic made it tough going for racers.
“The weather made it difficult,” Kittel said. “You needed to stay in front to stay out of trouble and avoid the crashes.”
Kittel’s teammates helped put him in position for the final sprint, and the speedy German took care of the rest.
“In the last kilometer I was on the wheel of Rabobank and then Tyler Farrar passed me on the right,” he said. At 300 or 250 meters to go he went out to the right side. I just followed him and also went directly into the wind and started my sprint. This is a race every sprinter dreams about so I’m really happy to be on the list of winners.”