Cycling

Leknessund victor at first post-lockdown European race

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Andreas Leknessund

Image credit: Getty Images

ByAlexander Netherton
21/05/2020 at 15:28 | Updated 21/05/2020 at 15:53

Uno-X racer Andreas Leknessund won the Klatrekongen Fuel of Norway race, the first professional race since Europe's coronavirus pandemic lockdown.

Professional cycling in Western Europe has been suspended since mid-March, and the 20-year-old Norwegian won the uphill individual time trail.

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Leknessund rides for the Uno-X Development Team and will step up to Team Sunweb or next year's WorldTour.

He won in a time of 10:12 for the 4.1km course, beating Tobias Foss of Jubo-Visma by 21 seconds. Joker Fuel of Norway's Adne Holter was 34 seconds behind.

Team Ineos directeur sportif Gabriel Rasch and Tour of Norway director Birger Hungerholdt had organised the race without publicity in order to limit the risk of spectator crowds.

There were further safety provisions, with no roadside fans permitted, and riders were started one rider at a time.

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Hungerholdt said: "The reason we keep it secret is where we want to be, because we don't want to have a lot of people here in the situation we are in.

"We therefore try to keep it 'closed' so that we could do this in a proper and safe manner."

Speaking to Norwegian television channel TV2, Leknessund said: "It was harder than I expected. It was hard.

"I went out hard hoping it would last, and it did. I wanted to go fast. I've made good preparations in recent days. I was motivated."

RESULTS

1. Andreas Leknessund (Nor) Uno-X Norwegian Development Team 0:10:12

2. Tobias Foss (Nor) Team Jumbo-Visma 0:00:21

3. Ådne Holter (Nor) Joker Fuel of Norway 0:00:34

4. Iver Knotten (Nor) Team Coop 0:00:37

5. Carl Frederik Hagen (Nor) Lotto Soudal 0:00:39

6. Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) NTT Pro Cycling 0:00:43

7. Rasmus Tiller (Nor) NTT Pro Cycling 0:00:57

8. Torstein Træen (Nor) Uno-X Norwegian Development Team 0:01:28

9. Øivind Lukkedahl (Nor) Joker Fuel of Norway 0:01:34

10. Trond Håkon Trondsen (Nor) Team Coop 0:01:34

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