On Saturday he tried to launch a sprint for Steven de Jongh as a sign of his appreciation for the work the Dutchman does for him. As it happened, de Jongh was unable to stay on his leader"s wheel, and Boonen ended up settling for victory himself.
There will certainly be no such tokens of appreciation on this occasion though, as Boonen has made no secret of his desire to ride into Balen, the town where he lived until moving to Monaco towards the end of last year.
"Winning in Balen with the rainbow [world champion's] jersey is a chance that I may never have again, so I absolutely want to seize this opportunity," he said after victory in Westmalle (right).
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Image credit: dpa
The sprint trio of Simone Cadamuro, Baden Cooke and Max van Heeswijk will be lining up ready to pounce on any mistake from the big Belgian, though Boonen's form over the past few days suggest that there is nobody on this Tour capable of taking victory from him when he is in the mood.
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