Kris Boeckmans was thrilled to finish 145th in the Handzame Classic, 50 seconds down on winner Erik Baska (Tinkoff). It was the first race back for the Lotto-Soudal rider after suffering terrible injuries in a crash at last year’s Vuelta a Espana.
“I was able to finish the race. My goal has been achieved.”
“You can not believe how lucky I am to be back as a rider. I also got a lot of applause,” he told the Belga news agency. “People called my name after the finish. I like it. “
But the public recogniztion wasn’t the only benefit. “It did a lot for me to once again participate in a competition. Lots of riders came to me to ask how it went and many of them were pleased that I was back in the peloton.”
From here, the Belgian will travel to Spain for the Volta a Catalunya. “I will first just start in the first stage and then we’ll see how many days I stay in the race.”
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