Neo-pro Logan Owen impressed at Omloop Het Nieuwsblad this weekend where he played a key role in the #PinkArgyle tactics that put Sep Vanmarcke onto the podium. For the uninitiated, Owen was meant to impress. The ten-time national cyclocross champion was the first American to win U23 Liège-Bastagone-Liège and gave up ‘cross to pursue his Classics dreams in the WorldTour.
In his maiden elite classic, Owen was both alert and astute, checking in with Vanmarcke, offering all he could do to help — which is his goal this year: to help, to learn and to further the foundation he’s already begun to build in his quest to become one of the best in the spring season business.
Owen’s assessment of his performance in the Classics season opener:
My job for the race was to make sure Sep and the other couple of guys going for the finish were taken care of all day and to make sure they were in the front at kilometer 115. If I made it past that I was to position them for the bottom of the Kokerelle, which was a new climb to the race and where fireworks were expected to go off.
Everything went according to plan and I was able to help put them in the front for both of those sections. It wasn’t easy. I spent a lot of energy closing gaps and keeping Sep out of the wind earlier in the race.
I basically treated those two points as my finish line and gave everything to make sure we were in the front for the key points in the race. After that, I held on to the back of the bunch for a couple more kilometers before getting dropped with a big group.
Before the race started I told myself that no matter what I was going to finish the race. Many guys in the group that I was in got in their respective vans and team cars but I slugged on with seven other guys to the finish. Although I finished they put me down as a DNF for some reason even though I wasn’t outside time cut but I was able to complete all the goals the team and I set out for myself before the race. Sep really rewarded all of our hard work with a podium finish.
Sport director Ken Vanmarkce adds:
We know that Logan is good but always in the first year, there are question marks. We are all really happy about how he performed and reacted and behaved – like a real professional. He asked what to do and when to do it. He brought his teammates to the perfect spots at the perfect times like he was used to doing it. We’re really, really happy about having him.