When I get calls from both of our men who trawl the Belgian palmares websites – Vik and Dave – in the one day about a performance, I know it must be a good ride. Michael Nicolson’s 14th place in the tough GP Stad Zottegem over 182 kilometres behind Slovenian hard man Blaz Jarc (NetApp-Endura) with Vacansoleil duo Wouter Mol (The Netherlands) and 2012 Paris-Tours winner Marco Marcato (Italy) third and fifth respectively, certainly falls into that category.
The race is a UCI 1.1 and was first held in 1934.
It’s also known as the Dokter Tistaertprijs after the legendary figure – known as ‘The Father of the Young Flemish Riders’ – of the same name who as well as dispensing free medical care to young riders had a hand in the organisation of that first race back in 1934.
Jan Raas, Marc Wauters, Etienne de Wilde and Nico Eeckhout are all on the roll of honour – in other words; ‘not just any old race.’
We caught up with Michael soon after his cracking ride for an update on his ride and how things are where cycling isn’t just on dual carriageways – it’s in the soil.