Jasper Philipsen said he wants to end his season in style at this week’s Presidential Cycling Tour of Turkey after winning stage one at a canter in Antalya.
On the fast and chaotic opening stage, Philipsen was able to call upon a full lead out from his Alpecin-Deceuninck teammates as the peloton tore onto the long straight road along the beachfront.
The Belgian rider is one of the headline names at the race and managed to hold off Astana Qazaqstan’s Gleb Syritsa who took second.
Philipsen’s fellow countryman Timothy Dupont of Tartelleto-Isorex finished third.
Philipsen told Cycling Weekly that he wanted to end his season on a high note and hoped to punch the air once more and celebrate another victory later on in the eight-day stage race.
“The team did a really good job,” he said. “It was really hectic because it was an easier, short day but I think the team had a really good experience out there with Ramon [Sinkeldam] guiding Simon [Dehairs] through at the front.
“I think we were able to stay calm, find the right moment and do a good group lead out for me, so I’m happy to finish it off.”
Philipsen has enjoyed a sparkling 2023 campaign and has maintained strong form throughout the year. The 25-year-old won Scheldeprijs in April before going on to win four stages at the Tour de France in July.
He also wore the green jersey in Paris after winning the race’s points classification.
As well as his success at the Tour, the Alpecin-Deceuninck fast-man also took second place at Paris-Roubaix behind Mathieu van der Poel in an impressive one two for the Belgian team.
“It’s been a great year, a really great year,” Philipsen added as he reflected on his season. “I want to try to end it in a good way. So seven days to go now, it was definitely one of the easier days today.
“The next few days will be hard, I think, but I hope to win again another time later in the race this week.”
Meanwhile Mark Cavendish was back in action for Astana after his recent announcement that he will postpone his retirement for another year.
His team announced last week that the Manxman will ride on in 2024 and attempt to win a record breaking 35th stage at the Tour de France. Cavendish is currently the joint record holder for the most stage wins with Eddy Merckx.
The Presidential Cycling Tour of Turkey continues on Monday with a hilly 166 kilometre test from Kemer to Kalkan.