Team KATUSHA ALPECIN’S José Gonçalves took full advantage of the good racing form he brought to the Netherlands and Belgium to win the 4th stage in the 2017 Ster ZLM Toer on Saturday. In the process, Gonçalves takes over the general classification with only one stage remaining to race. Joining a group of 7, the Portuguese rider was part of a two-man breakaway at 30k to go and managed to leave behind his companion Laurens De Plus of Quick-Step Floors and win the Queen stage by six-seconds.
“I am feeling very good. I bring with me great form from last month’s Giro d’Italia. I think our team here is very good and especially strong. Today it was full gas. I tried to go alone near the end and managed to win. I am very happy with this jersey and we will do everything we can to defend the yellow jersey on the last day,” said José Gonçalves. Earlier in the stage teammate Maxim Belkov made the break, setting up the opportunity for Gonçalves to later bridge across in his quest to win the stage.
Third place (+.22) belonged to former race leader Primož Roglič of LottoNL-Jumbo for the 186.7k stage from Hotel Verviers to the dam at La Gileppe (Jalhay) in the Ardennes.
Gonçalves, 28, leads the general classification by 8-seconds to Roglič and ten-seconds to De Plus. It’s the first win of the season for José Gonçalves. Last year he won the Presidential Tour of Turkey and had stage wins there, as well as in the Volta a Portugal.
The concluding stage on Sunday begins and ends in Oss at 180.9k