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Iljo Keisse’s Most Exciting Finalé!


If we take Tom Boonen’s epics out of the equation there’s no doubt about the best finale of the year.

The end game of stage seven of the Presidential Tour of Turkey saw a break of seven riders clear with six kilometres to go.

Despite their lead plummeting as an angry peloton closed them down, there were riders skiving and scheming.

Iljo Keisse
Iljo heads for his superb solo win.

One man was having none of it and with just over five kilometres to go he bolted – Iljo Keisse.

As his erstwhile partners in crime debated the issue of who should – and indeed, could – chase the Belgian, Keisse built his lead.

As he soloed under the red kite it looked as if QuickStep were about to easily add another victory to their stunning 2012 roll of honour.

But that smooth Turkish asphalt had sheen to it in the hot afternoon sun and as Keisse gingerly took the last corner of the day – a tight hairpin right hander into the finishing straight – his front wheel tucked in under him and he was down.

With what looked like all the time in the world, he picked himself up and re-mounted, only to discover that his chain was off.

Again, with all of the urgency of a man out for a Sunday potter, he dismounted, put the chain back in its rightful place, had a look back down the r