The Women’s World Tour classic Gent-Wevelgem didn’t get Team Hitec Products – Birk Sport a result that was hoped for. It was a hard race in Belgium, with a lot of riders not making it to the finish. Lonneke Uneken, who finished second in the junior women edition of Gent-Wevelgem in 2018, was the only rider of the team who ended the race. She came in 88th place.
“I really enjoyed myself”, said Lonneke after the finish. “It was a super hard race, but the route and the spectators were awesome. This was really different racing than when I race here as a junior last year. We then had to ride local laps of twelve kilometers, with one cobble stone section in it. This is the real deal.”
There were a lot of crashes in the beginning of the team and Vita Heine had bad luck on a really bad moment in the race. Lonneke: “It was very nervous in the beginning. The pace was high, but you didn’t get the idea that the peloton would break. From the first time Baneberg, it was the whole time full gas. I had to let go a few times on the climbs, but was able to ride back to the peloton. The second time we passed the Baneberg I couldn’t get back anymore and I rode to the finish solo.”
Good start of the season
For Lonneke Gent-Wevelgem was the second World Tour race, after her bad luck in Drenthe, were she crashed early in the race and couldn’t get back. This time she finished and she again proved to have a good start as an elite rider. “I am very happy with where I am now and how everything is going. Before the season I didn’t know what to expect, but I feel I had a good winter and I feel strong. By racing these kind of races I only get strong.”