Teuns opens Arctic Race of Norway with win in Narvik

Teuns opens Arctic Race of Norway with win in Narvik

10/08/2017 at 20:53Updated 10/08/2017 at 21:08

BMC’s Dylan Teuns is twice 'lucky' with pre-race catch and opening stage victory at fifth edition of the Arctic Race of Norway …

Belgian Dylan Teuns continues his mid-season hot streak with an opening stage victory at the 2017 Arctic Race of Norway on Thursday.

The 25-year-old BMC prodigy is fresh off his first WorldTour race win at the Tour of Pologne after claiming Stage 3 and eventually lifting the leader’s jersey from Stage 1 winner Peter Sagan three days later. Prior to Poland, Teuns took two stages and both the general classification and points jersey at the Tour de Wallonie (2.HC) to close out July.

In the last 5k of the 156.5-kilometre stage, Teuns followed a group of riders sitting on the front, but held back until the last climb. Teuns sat 10th wheel in the ascent up the small climb toward the finish of the sole 10.5km city circuit and attacked in the last couple of metres at the top to take the final 390m to the line ahead of August Jensen (Team Coop) and Andrea Pasqualon (Wanty-Groupe Gobert).

“No, because [Kristoff] was still there in the final,” Teuns told Eurosport after the stage win. “I didn’t expect him and I looked back at the second last climb and I looked back and I saw him there and I was really surprised he survived the climb really good. I knew I had to wait until the last climb, so I tried to make a gap and I had a small gap and kept going until the finish line.”

His good fortune even extends off the bike, as he was the only one of five cyclists on deck at a pre-race fishing excursion to land a fish — a nearly 5kg Atlantic Cod in the Norwegian Sea.

Teuns not only bested recently-crowned European champion Alexander Kristoff (Katusha-Alpecin), 2004 Giro d’Italia winner Damiano Cunego (Nippo-Vini Fantini), reigning U23 world road race champion Kristoffer Halvorsen (Joker Icopal) and Yoann Offredo (Wanty-Groupe Gobert) with the rod and reel, but also on the road in Narvik after a wet, brisk 156.5km day from Engenes (Andørja).

“It was good luck yesterday, good luck today,” said Teuns. “I’m really happy with this. For sure … it’s always nice to have a victory and I also have the jersey, but it’s still three days to go.”

With the win, Teuns assumes the blue leader’s jersey, green points jersey and white jersey for best young rider. Friday’s second stage features a 184.5km route from Sjøvegan to Bardufoss with two Cat. 2 climbs and three intermediate sprints inside the final 25km.