I’m Enzo Leijnse and this month it’s my turn to share my adventures of this season as a rider of Development Team dsm-firmenich with you all, which has been a crazy ride so far!
After taking on the Dutch Championships at the end of June, I returned to racing in France at Tour Alsace. In the meantime, I trained a lot in the team’s Aqua-Step Keep Challenging Center near Sittard, where I live, so it took some time to get back into the swing of things. At Tour Alsace, I believe we rode really well together, which led to Frank van den Broek’s nice win and a third-place finish in the overall standings. Of course, it was also my first race with Frank; although I hadn’t met him yet, we had raced against each other in the past. He really brings something to the team, and it was good to see how committed he was to us all. It was definitely a good beginning!
Taking the first win with the team
The season has already been going for a while, and I’ve already done some nice races, with my first professional cycling win at the Olympia Tour in March. We had big hopes for the Olympias Tour, including winning races and finishing high on GC. It wasn’t the ideal beginning, but our win in stage four made it much better. I really didn’t believe I was going to win until the final few hundred metres of the stage. With around 35 kilometres to go, I attacked with another rider from the first echelon. Although we never got a significant gap on the chasers, we heard that we would be able to finish the race in the final. I wasn’t quite confident in my sprint, so I had to drop him before the finish and attacked from his wheel and directly created a small gap from him, which he didn’t close until the finish.
I was actually quite surprised by my own performance as I was the first to cross the finish line. I cheered with the soigneur first, then with the rest of the team and staff inside the bus. I don’t often win races, but I always give my all for the team, so this victory and the top spot on the podium were really special to me. I was able to prove to myself through this result that I can indeed win races, which has now increased my motivation to do so. Of course, it depends on my role in the upcoming races, but if the races allow, I’d like to try for victory again soon. Because the season had just begun, I haven’t celebrated properly just, but I appreciate all the kind words and congrats that I have received!