Tourmert, Morocco - Tuesday 4 October 2022
night in the bivouac elicited the most varied reactions during breakfast,
ranging from 'I slept a lot better than expected' to 'I'm glad I brought my
earplugs' to 'those mattresses were actually pretty good to sleep on'.
delicious cup of coffee from Café Copain and a breakfast for champions, the first
challenge of the day awaited the participants: folding their tent and getting it
in the tent bag. With the help of experienced participants and crew, that went
remarkably fast this year!
By 8am, excitement
began to rise in the bivouac. Camelbaks and drink cans were filled, luggage and
tents neatly handed in and everyone got ready for the start. At 7.45 the first
riders lined up in the starting area, with the yellow (leaders Men), green
(leaders Master) and red (leaders Grand Master) neatly in the front row. The
sunrise provided a beautiful color palette on the massif in the background and
in front, the cyclists had a nice view on the track awaiting them along the
sharp the first riders took off and only 5 minutes later all 269 riders
starting today had passed under the starting arch. With 103 km this second
stage was a bit shorter than the first stage (115 km), but the riders had to
climb a lot more altimeters (2064 today compared to 1863 yesterday). So it
promised to be another tough one.
of the day were again the duo Granfondoteam 1, with Michaël Ossieur and Simon
Stevens. At the finish Simon said: “We had built up a lead pretty quickly
because we started relatively fast. Behind us, however, they kept riding very
fast, so we got caught again and it came back together. On the long climb we
first stayed together with other riders for a bit, but on the steep section we
went full on and that's where we were really able to make the difference."
really ride 27 minutes faster than last year's winning time?”, they sounded
surprised as they turned to the more than deserved pasta buffet.
in the Master category, Benoît Hustinx and Pascal Leplae, were also very pleased
with their performance: “We are a fantastic team, I struggle uphill, my buddy suffers
more on the flat, we are very complementary. But it's really super cool. What a
beautiful challenging course, also mentally. We rode together with a few other
teams for the first 50km, but the second part we were alone.”
Devis, known from the Belgian tv-show “Stukken van Mensen” also came in early.
He participates in the Challenge category but set a very respectable time today
at 6:32:04, also leaving a few race teams behind him. “What a stunning course. Really
beautiful, but I think that every day again. Please let it not be over too
quickly, because this is very enjoyable!”
second win in a row, the Ossieur-Stevens duo strengthened their leadership
position in the general classification and in their age category. With a
difference of more than 38 minutes over their next competitors in the Men
category, they enjoy a reassuring lead for the time being.
Ossieur and Simon Stevens in 4:49:07 (winners and leaders all-round and in the
Driesen and Vincent Meyvis at 5:06:20
Hustinx and Pascal Leplae (Masters winners and leaders) in 5:12:30
Maes and Alex Moonen (winners at the Grand Masters) in 5:18:55
5. Bart Hoornaert and Dieter Verhaeghe in
6. Korneel Monbailliu and Peter Van Praet
7. Sébastien Kestelyn and Paul Winnock De
Grave at 5:33:29
8. Vaast Bogaert and Diederik Libbrecht in
5:33:45 (leiders bij de Grand Masters)
9. Stefan Vaes and Sven Van Esbroeck in
Stuyck and Jiri Verbylen in 5:43:12
the third stage will go from Ait Tourmert to El Kelaa M'Gouna, over a distance
of 77 km and 1173 altimeters.
info and live tracking:
· Facebook en Instagram: @rocdumaroc
· Resultaten: https://my.raceresult.com/220963/results