LottoNL-Jumbo's George Bennett finished seventh overall in the Abu Dhabi Tour today, 56 seconds behind overall winner Rui Costa. The final stage on the Yas Marina circuit was won by Caleb Ewan, Enrico Battaglin placed 17th.
"It was a really nice way to start back," Bennett said. "I wasn't sure what to expect starting this race with being out so long. I will take allot of confidence from the week knowing I'm back to full health. I hope I can build on the form from here."
Bennett is coming back from mononucleosis and started his season this week with a top ten ranking in a WorldTour race.
"Seventh normally isn't a result to get too excited about, but when I look at the names around me then I know I'm in good company.”
"The race appeared simple on paper, but it never works out that way with wind and rain, so it took the whole team to bring it home."
The final stage consisted 20 laps on the Yas Marina race track. The riders covered 143 kilometres in the rain. Bennett finished 24th. In the overall, the New Zealander went from sixth to seventh place.
GC-Train in good shape
Sportive Director Merijn Zeeman explained, "Strong teamwork ensured that George Bennett made this good achievement. Even Steven Kruijswijk and Robert Gesink showed a good level this week. It looks good in view of the upcoming races."
It was Team LottoNL-Jumbo’s first participation in the Abu Dhabi Tour.
"It was a well organised race in a special environment. It is nice to race here with the team."