"It's more important how the victim is doing" - Soren Waerenskjold takes ITT win at Baloise Belgium Tour after delay for medical emergency

The opening stage of the 2024 Baloise Belgium Tour went to Uno-X Mobility's Soren Waerenskjold as the Norwegian national time-trial champion once again proved his capabilities against the clock. The main talking point of the day however, came when the stage was halted due to a medical emergency.

Understandably given the nature of the situation, Waerenskjold couldn't help but be slightly affected by the fate of the supporter, who reportedly suffered a cardiac arrest. "I heard that the victim was saved. I'm especially very happy about that," said the Uno-X Mobility rider in his post-stage interview. "I knew I needed to focus on my own performance, but the neutralisation did have an impact. In the end, it's more important how the victim is doing, and fortunately he is fine."

A positive update to say the least. Another positive for the Norwegian, who also took time-trial victory at the 2023 Baloise Belgium Tour, now moves into the overall race lead, although by just 2 seconds from Lidl-Trek's Mathias Vacek.

"I felt good, but didn't really find a good rhythm. This time trial was also a bit shorter. I tried to find my momentum and save energy in the corners, because there were a lot of right-angled corners in it," Warenskjold reflected of his efforts. "I wanted to open hard but also control myself a bit because there was a headwind in the final. I always wanted to keep my power output the same. I only went up or down 5 watts each time, I tried to keep that the same."

How long can he now hold the race lead though? "We'll look at it stage by stage. If I can follow the rest in stage four, then maybe something is possible," Warenskjold concludes. "Only the opposition is stronger this year. We'll see, but I definitely want to try to sprint the next stages."

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