HTC's Patrick Gretsch wins prologue in the Ster ZLM Tour
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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

HTC's Patrick Gretsch wins prologue in the Ster ZLM Tour

by Bjorn Haake at 2:53 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Race Reports and Results
Second-year professional races to first win

patrick gretschHTC Highroad rider Patrick Gretsch took his first win as a professional when he blasted to a three-second win over teammate Alex Rasmussen in the prologue of the Ster ZLM Tour (formerly known as the Ster Elektrotoer). Gretsch covered the seven kilometers in 8'30"67, Rasmussen in 8'33"69 and third-placed Alex Dowsett (Sky) came home in 8'35"19.

Gretsch pulled out all stops on the short course. "Patrick did a perfect job, taking a lot of risks on the corners, but using his time trial skills very well, too," said HTC-Highroad sports director Jan Schaffrath. Gretsch had eyed the  start of the race as the crucial part. "He really pushed it in the first two kilometers, which were very technical, had lots of corners and even a few cobbled sections, and I think that's where he made the difference," Schaffrath said.

HTC was happy with the double victory. "Alex rode really, really well, but he was already a couple of seconds down on Patrick right from the start and it stayed like that all the way through."

Gretsch was a  silver medalist in the Worlds U-23 Time Trial  in 2008. "Everybody knows he's a good time trialist, and he really did a lot of hard work to get this one right," Schaffrath said. "We took a bit of a risk deciding that all our top riders should have late starts, but finally everybody had the same weather conditions and the best riders won."
HTC-Highroad took the same race  last year with Adam Hansen, but Schaffrath was cautious about their chances of repeating an overall victory. "We're in a good position and tomorrow's [Thursday's] stage should finish in a bunch sprint, which would be good for Alex. After that, we're into the hilly stages and we'll take it on  day-by-day."

Gretsch joined HTC last year and has shown promise in individual time trials already. He finished second in the 2010 Tour of Austria prologue. Prior to that he was also second to Tony Martin in the German National time trial Championships. A fifth place in the Vuelta a Murcia time trial and a sixth place in the Bayernrundfahrt time trial showed that besides prologues he can handle distances between 20 and 30 kilometers very well.

Kurt Hovelijnck (Donckers Koffie - Jelly Belly)was the first to come off the start ramp, at 17:30 local time. He rode home in 9'11"50, Cyclocross specialist Christoph Pfingsten was the first rider under nine minutes (8'58"17). Graeme Brown then showed that a sprinter can also time trial, setting a mark of 8'52"91.

Brown's teammate Sebastian Langeveld rode a strong race, clocking in at 8'40"43 and the temporary lead. Then it was Gretsch's turn and he set the day's best time. Garmin's Tyler Farrar had a very good ride. His 8'44"27 was an eventual seventh place. Dowsett was the third to last rider and would become third at the end of the day.

Philippe Gilbert was next, riding to an 8'48"41. Rasmussen concluded the prologue at 19:51.


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Ster ZLM Toer, Netherlands Stage One Results: Alblasserdam to Alblasserdam (7 km)

  Click on the arrowsat the top of the column to sort the race results.
Country Result Name Team Time
ger GER 1 Patrick Gretsch (HTC-Highroad) 00:08:30
den DEN 2 Alex Rasmussen (HTC-Highroad) 00:00:03
gbr GBR 3 Alex Dowsett (Team Sky) 00:00:06
ned NED 4 Sebastian Langeveld (Rabobank) 00:00:10
ned NED 5 Niki Terpstra (Quick Step) 00:00:13
ned NED 6 Sander Oostlander (Cycling Team De Rijke) s.t.
usa USA 7 Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Cervelo) 00:00:14
aus AUS 8 Michael Matthews (Rabobank) 00:00:15
fra FRA 9 Anthony Roux (Française Des Jeux) s.t.
ned NED 10 Jens Mouris (Vacansoleil-DCM) 00:00:16
den DEN 11 Lars Ytting Bak (HTC-Highroad) s.t.
ita ITA 12 Davide Appollonio (Team Sky) s.t.
bel BEL 13 Dominique Cornu (Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator) 00:00:17
ned NED 14 Stef Clement (Rabobank) s.t.
ned NED 15 Bram Tankink (Rabobank) s.t.
den DEN 16 Michael Morkov (Saxo Bank-Sungard) 00:00:18
bel BEL 17 Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto ) s.t.
ger GER 18 Roger Kluge (Skil-Shimano) s.t.
aus AUS 19 Brett Lancaster (Garmin-Cervelo) 00:00:19
ned NED 20 Jos Van Emden (Rabobank) 00:00:20
ltu LTU 21 Ramunas Navardauskas (Garmin-Cervelo) s.t.
ned NED 22 Dennis Van Winden (Rabobank) s.t.
bel BEL 23 Gianni Meersman (Française Des Jeux) 00:00:21
ned NED 24 Dirk Bellemakers (Landbouwkrediet) 00:00:22
aus AUS 25 Graeme Brown (Rabobank) s.t.
ger GER 26 Sebastian Lang (Omega Pharma-Lotto ) 00:00:23
fra FRA 27 Yoann Offredo (Française Des Jeux) 00:00:24
fra FRA 28 David Boucher (Omega Pharma-Lotto ) s.t.
ned NED 29 Tom Stamsnijder (Leopard-Trek) s.t.
bel BEL 30 Bart De Clercq (Omega Pharma-Lotto ) s.t.
den DEN 31 Martin Mortensen (Leopard-Trek) s.t.
fra FRA 32 Arnaud Gerard (Française Des Jeux) 00:00:26
ger GER 33 Timo Seubert (Team Netapp) s.t.
bel BEL 34 Johan Vansummeren (Garmin-Cervelo) 00:00:27
aus AUS 35 David Tanner (Saxo Bank-Sungard) s.t.
aus AUS 36 William Clarke (Leopard-Trek) 00:00:28
bel BEL 37 Jelle Wallays (Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator) s.t.
fin FIN 38 Matti Helminen (Landbouwkrediet) s.t.
aus AUS 39 Mark Renshaw (HTC-Highroad) 00:00:29
nzl NZL 40 Hayden Roulston (HTC-Highroad) s.t.
bel BEL 41 Kevin Van Impe (Quick Step) s.t.
bel BEL 42 Klaas Lodewyck (Omega Pharma-Lotto ) s.t.
ned NED 43 Albert Timmer (Skil-Shimano) s.t.
bel BEL 44 Kris Boeckmans (Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator) s.t.
bel BEL 45 Pieter Vanspeybrouck (Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator) 00:00:30
ger GER 46 Christoph Pfingsten (Cycling Team De Rijke) s.t.
ger GER 47 Andreas Klier (Garmin-Cervelo) 00:00:31
ned NED 48 Koen De Kort (Skil-Shimano) s.t.
bel BEL 49 Jens Debusschere (Omega Pharma-Lotto ) 00:00:32
can CAN 50 Michael Barry (Team Sky) 00:00:33
ita ITA 51 Giacomo Nizzolo (Leopard-Trek) s.t.
bel BEL 52 Dimitri Claeys (Team Netapp) s.t.
ger GER 53 Robert Retschke (Team Netapp) s.t.
ger GER 54 Andreas Schillinger (Team Netapp) s.t.
usa USA 55 Caleb Fairly (HTC-Highroad) 00:00:34
ned NED 56 Michel Kreder (Garmin-Cervelo) 00:00:35
ned NED 57 Theo Bos (Rabobank) s.t.
bel BEL 58 Johan Coenen (Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator) s.t.
ned NED 59 Sierk-jan De Haan (Cyclingteam Jo Piels) s.t.
fra FRA 60 Cédric Pineau (Française Des Jeux) 00:00:36
bel BEL 61 Guillaume Van Keirsbulck (Quick Step) s.t.
ned NED 62 Joost Van Leijen (Vacansoleil-DCM) 00:00:37
bel BEL 63 Steven Van Vooren (Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator) s.t.
ned NED 64 Huub Duyn (Donckers Koffie - Jelly Belly Cycling ...) 00:00:38
ger GER 65 Dominik Klemme (Leopard-Trek) s.t.
ned NED 66 Yoeri Havik (Cycling Team De Rijke) s.t.
bel BEL 67 Nikolas Maes (Quick Step) s.t.
fra FRA 68 Jérome Pineau (Quick Step) s.t.
aus AUS 69 Adam Leigh Howard (HTC-Highroad) 00:00:39
bel BEL 70 Sander Helven (Donckers Koffie - Jelly Belly Cycling ...) s.t.
ned NED 71 Ronan Van Zandbeek (Skil-Shimano) s.t.
bel BEL 72 Serge Pauwels (Team Sky) s.t.
bel BEL 73 Kevin Hulsmans (Donckers Koffie - Jelly Belly Cycling ...) s.t.
bel BEL 74 Bjorn Leukemans (Vacansoleil-DCM) 00:00:40
fra FRA 75 Frédéric Guesdon (Française Des Jeux) s.t.
fra FRA 76 Yann Huguet (Skil-Shimano) s.t.
ned NED 77 Johnny Hoogerland (Vacansoleil-DCM) s.t.
bel BEL 78 Kurt Hovelijnck (Donckers Koffie - Jelly Belly Cycling ...) 00:00:41
bel BEL 79 Kenny Dehaes (Omega Pharma-Lotto ) s.t.
nzl NZL 80 Julian Dean (Garmin-Cervelo) s.t.
arg ARG 81 Juan Jose Haedo (Saxo Bank-Sungard) 00:00:42
ned NED 82 Bert-jan Lindeman (Cyclingteam Jo Piels) 00:00:43
bel BEL 83 Bert Scheirlinckx (Landbouwkrediet) s.t.
bel BEL 84 Bart Dockx (Landbouwkrediet) s.t.
ned NED 85 Remco Te Brake (Cycling Team De Rijke) 00:00:44
fra FRA 86 Matthieu Sprick (Skil-Shimano) s.t.
gbr GBR 87 Russell Downing (Team Sky) 00:00:45
den DEN 88 Jonas Aaen Jorgensen (Saxo Bank-Sungard) s.t.
bel BEL 89 Gorik Gardeyn (Vacansoleil-DCM) s.t.
den DEN 90 Anders Lund (Leopard-Trek) s.t.
arg ARG 91 Lucas Sebastian Haedo (Saxo Bank-Sungard) 00:00:47
ned NED 92 Rikke Dijkxhoorn (Cycling Team De Rijke) s.t.
ned NED 93 Kenny Van Hummel (Skil-Shimano) 00:00:48
ger GER 94 Robert Wagner (Leopard-Trek) s.t.
usa USA 95 Steven Cozza (Team Netapp) 00:00:49
bel BEL 96 Baptiste Planckaert (Landbouwkrediet) 00:00:50
gbr GBR 97 Adam Blythe (Omega Pharma-Lotto ) s.t.
ned NED 98 Addy Engels (Quick Step) s.t.
sui SUI 99 Michael Baer (Team Netapp) 00:00:53
bel BEL 100 Laurens De Vreese (Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator) s.t.
ned NED 101 Sjoerd Kouwenhoven (Cycling Team De Rijke) s.t.
bel BEL 102 Bert De Waele (Landbouwkrediet) s.t.
ned NED 103 Stefan Vreugdenhil (Cycling Team De Rijke) 00:00:54
irl IRL 104 Matthew Brammeier (HTC-Highroad) s.t.
ger GER 105 Eric Baumann (Team Netapp) s.t.
den DEN 106 Kasper Larsen Klostergaard (Saxo Bank-Sungard) s.t.
ned NED 107 Jelle Posthuma (Cyclingteam Jo Piels) 00:00:55
ger GER 108 Michael Schwarzmann (Team Netapp) s.t.
ned NED 109 Roy Curvers (Skil-Shimano) s.t.
ita ITA 110 Alberto Ongarato (Vacansoleil-DCM) 00:00:56
bel BEL 111 Geert Verheyen (Landbouwkrediet) s.t.
ned NED 112 Martijn Maaskant (Garmin-Cervelo) 00:00:57
den DEN 113 Martin Pedersen (Leopard-Trek) 00:00:58
bel BEL 114 Frederique Robert (Quick Step) s.t.
ita ITA 115 Marcello Pavarin (Vacansoleil-DCM) s.t.
ned NED 116 Bas Krauwel (Cycling Team De Rijke) 00:00:59
ned NED 117 Pim De Beer (Cyclingteam Jo Piels) s.t.
blr BLR 118 Yauheni Hutarovich (Française Des Jeux) 00:01:01
ned NED 119 Johim Ariesen (Cyclingteam Jo Piels) 00:01:02
gbr GBR 120 James Spragg (Donckers Koffie - Jelly Belly Cycling ...) 00:01:04
ger GER 121 Andreas Stauff (Quick Step) 00:01:05
bel BEL 122 Wilfried Cretskens (Donckers Koffie - Jelly Belly Cycling ...) 00:01:06
ned NED 123 Jasper Ockeloen (Donckers Koffie - Jelly Belly Cycling ...) 00:01:08
fra FRA 124 Olivier Bonnaire (Française Des Jeux) 00:01:09
bel BEL 125 Michael Vanderaerden (Donckers Koffie - Jelly Belly Cycling ...) 00:01:11
ned NED 126 Brian Megens (Cyclingteam Jo Piels) 00:01:12
bel BEL 127 Michael Van Staeyen (Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator) 00:01:14
ned NED 128 Reinier Honig (Landbouwkrediet) 00:01:17
gbr GBR 129 Jonathan Bellis (Saxo Bank-Sungard) s.t.
fra FRA 130 Romain Feillu (Vacansoleil-DCM) 00:01:18
ned NED 131 Cornelius Van Ooijen (Cyclingteam Jo Piels) 00:01:51

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