John Degenkolb Powers His Felt F1 to Europe Tour Win
Degenkolb proud after winning Europe Tour
John Degenkolb riding his Felt F1 of team Argos Shimano on Sunday assured himself of the overall victory in the Europe Tour with 596 points. A fourth place in Paris-Tours was sufficient for the 23-year-old sprinter to win the season long competition.
Before the race Degenkolb was not thinking about the possibility of winning the Europe Tour, the European part of the continental circuits of the UCI. He was one of the favorites for the victory in Paris-Tours and came to France to win the race. In the final kilometers Degenkolb tried to close the gap to a breakaway of three all by himself. But in the end he finished just 6 seconds behind the winner Marco Marcato, and rolled home in 4th, right behind numbers two and three Laurens de Vreese and Niki Terpstra.
"I only thought about winning the race", Degenkolb stated afterwards. "Unfortunately I couldn’t close the gap, but I’m happy the fourth place was enough for me to win the Europe Tour."
Now that his season is over, a sense of pride prevails by Degenkolb. Winning the Europe Tour is a symbol for his consistent and successful year. The German recorded a total of twelve wins: five stage wins in the Vuelta, two in the Tour de Picardie, two in the Three Days of Dunkirk and one in the Tour of Poland. In the Tour de Picardie he was also crowned overall winner. Degenkolb took his last victory on September 16 in the GP d'Isbergues. Furthermore, he was fourth at the World Championships in Limburg.
"I have had a very good year. As a team we worked hard and achieved great victories. I’m very proud of what we’ve done. This is very motivating for next year."
After his run of victories in the Vuelta Degenkolb now hopes to prove himself in next year's Tour de France. But first he will focus on the spring classics. This year he was close to a win in Milan-San Remo with a fifth place. "Just like this year, I’m going to focus on the spring classics. After that it would great to ride the Tour de France.”