Tom Boonen

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Tom Boonen
Tom Boonen MS 2012 (cropped).jpg
Personal information
Full name Tom Boonen
Nickname Tommeke
Tornado Tom
Bom van Balen
Born (1980-10-15) 15 October 1980 (age 33)
Mol, Belgium
Height 1.92 m (6 ft 4 in)
Weight 82 kg (181 lb)
Team information
Current team Omega Pharma-Quick Step
Discipline Road
Role Rider
Rider type Classics specialist
Sprinter
Professional team(s)
2002
2003–
US Postal
Quick Step-Davitamon
Major wins

Grand Tours

Tour de France
Points classification (2007)
6 individual stages (2004, 2005, 2007)
Vuelta a España
2 individual stages (2008)

Stage races

Tour of Belgium (2005)
Tour de Picardie (2004)
Tour of Qatar (2006, 2008, 2009, 2012)

One-day races and Classics

Dwars door Vlaanderen (2007)
E3 Prijs Vlaanderen (2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2012)
Gent–Wevelgem (2004, 2011, 2012)
Grote Scheldeprijs (2004, 2006)
Kuurne–Brussels–Kuurne (2007, 2009, 2014)
Paris–Brussels (2012)
Paris–Roubaix (2005, 2008, 2009, 2012)
Tour of Flanders (2005, 2006, 2012)
National Road Race Championships (2009, 2012)
Infobox last updated on
29 May 2014

Tom Boonen (Dutch pronunciation: [tɔm boːnə(n)]; born 15 October 1980) is a Belgian professional road bicycle racer who won the 2005 world road race championship. He is a member of the Omega Pharma-Quick Step team,[1] and is a single-day road specialist with a strong finishing sprint. His personality and looks, with his successes, turned him into Belgium's male sports idol of the mid-2000s, but he incurred censure after testing positive twice for cocaine.[2]

Career[edit]

Early years[edit]

At the start of 2002 Boonen rode for US Postal, finishing third in Paris–Roubaix after an early breakaway. Fellow Belgian Johan Museeuw had escaped to a solo victory. Team captain George Hincapie crashed in a slippery section of the course leaving Boonen to ride for himself. Boonen's performance led Museeuw – his childhood hero – to declare Boonen his successor.[3]

Boonen said US Postal did not give him enough chances to ride for himself. Towards the end of the year he said he would leave, despite being under contract, and joined Quick Step-Davitamon at the start of 2003.[4] The 2003 season, however, did not go well, with lacklustre performance due to fatigue and knee injury. Museeuw was team leader for the spring classics.

During the 2004 season Boonen won the E3 Prijs Vlaanderen, Gent–Wevelgem and the Grote Scheldeprijs. He also won two stages of the Tour de France including the final stage in Paris, as Museeuw did in 1990.

2005: Winning Ronde, Roubaix and Worlds[edit]

In 2005 Boonen won the Tour of Flanders, Paris–Roubaix and the E3 Prijs Vlaanderen, and came second in the Omloop "Het Volk" behind teammate Nick Nuyens. He was first to win the Tour of Flanders, Paris–Roubaix, and the World Cycling Championship in the same season.

In the Tour of Flanders Boonen appeared to be the strongest sprinter in the final group. However, he attacked a few kilometers from the finish to the surprise of others and stayed away. Erik Dekker said: "I'm happy that I am near the end of my career, since with a cyclist like Boonen the spring classics will be rather boring the coming years".[5] In Paris–Roubaix, Boonen entered the velodrome in the leading trio, and waited until the last moment before outsprinting George Hincapie and the Spaniard, Juan Antonio Flecha.

In the Tour de France, Boonen won the second and third stages, taking the lead in the green jersey competition. He retired after stage 11 due to injuries sustained in crashes. On 25 September Boonen became the 21st Belgian road world champion. He won the race in Madrid, after the leading six riders were caught. He outsprinted Alejandro Valverde to become the first Belgian since Museeuw, in 1996, to wear the rainbow jersey. He came second in the 2005 UCI ProTour rankings.

At the end of the year Boonen won several awards: Kristallen Fiets (Crystal Bicycle), Vélo d'Or (Golden Bicycle), Trofee voor Sportverdienste (Trophy For Sporting Merit), Belgian Sportsman of the year and Belgian Sports Personality of the Year.

2006[edit]

Boonen signing in at Tarbes during the 2006 Tour de France

In 2006, Boonen won the Tour of Flanders[N 1] and came second in Paris–Roubaix the following week. Leif Hoste, Peter Van Petegem and Vladimir Gusev placed second to fourth at Roubaix but were disqualified for riding through a closed level-crossing before a train passed. This promoted Boonen to second, behind Fabian Cancellara.

Boonen won the second and the third stages of the Tour of Belgium. Before the Tour de France he claimed himself to be the strongest and smartest sprinter. However, he did not win a stage in the first week, beaten by Robbie McEwen and Óscar Freire. However he wore the yellow jersey for the first time, losing it in the first time trial to Sergei Honchar. Boonen abandoned the Tour during the 15th stage – 187 km from Gap to l'Alpe d'Huez – when he was unable to reach the summit of the Col du Lautaret.

Boonen won three stages of the Eneco Tour of Benelux but could not keep his title at the world championship, held on a circuit that was hillier than in Madrid 2005. Paolo Bettini won and Boonen came ninth.

2007[edit]

In his 2007, Boonen won five stages of the Tour of Qatar and came second in the general classification behind teammate Wilfried Cretskens. He won Kuurne–Brussels–Kuurne and E3 Prijs Vlaanderen but he didn't win one of the five cycling monuments. His best placing was third in Milan – San Remo.

Boonen won stages 6 and 12 of the Tour de France in the absence of Alessandro Petacchi and Robbie McEwen. He won the green jersey as best sprinter, first Belgian since Eddy Planckaert in 1988.

2008[edit]

Boonen at the 2008 Paris–Roubaix

Boonen began 2008 by winning four stages and the overall and points classifications in the Tour of Qatar. In the Tour of Flanders, he took on a defensive role when his teammate Stijn Devolder escaped and won. A week later, he outsprinted Fabian Cancellara and Alessandro Ballan in the final 500m to win the Paris–Roubaix. On 10 June 2008, reports said Boonen was negotiating a team place for him and other riders Bouygues Télécom at Bouyges, a French team. Its sporting director, Jean-René Bernaudeau, confirmed the report. Wilfried Cretskens and Kevin Hulsmans were named as the others involved.[6]

Negotiations ended when Boonen tested positive for cocaine. Cocaine was not a performance-enhancing drug and Boonen faced no sanctions by the UCI or WADA. He apologized to his Quick Step manager, Patrick Lefévère at a press conference next day. Lefévère said Quick Step kept its confidence in him. But Boonen was barred from the Tour of Switzerland and the Tour de France.[7][8] In February 2009 a Belgian court found him guilty of cocaine use but decided against sanctions, saying he has "been punished enough".[9][10]

2009[edit]

Boonen celebrating victory in the 2009 Paris–Roubaix; his third victory at the race.

Boonen began 2009 by winning a stage and the overall and points classifications in the Tour of Qatar. He also won Kuurne–Brussels–Kuurne for the second time. In the Tour of Flanders he had to take on a defensive role when his teammate Stijn Devolder escaped and won for the second time. The following week Boonen won Paris–Roubaix for the third time in his career.

On 27 April, Boonen tested positive for cocaine for the third time (the first, in November 2007, had not previously been made public). He was suspended by his team, Quick Step, on 9 May.[11] He began racing again in the Critérium du Dauphiné Libéré. In June, he won the national championship. After initiating legal proceedings he was allowed to compete in the Tour de France, just one day before the start on 3 July 2009. He pulled out, due to illness on 18 July, before the 15th stage.

He returned to racing in the Eneco Tour where he won the third stage by beating Tyler Farrar in the sprint. After that he entered the Vuelta a España to prepare for the final part of the season. There, he finished second in the prologue behind Cancellara. He crashed in the seventh stage, a 30 km time trial, losing by 1m 03s and ended the day second overall behind Cancellara. He withdrew during the 13th stage, due to the lasting effects of his crash in the seventh stage.

He finished his season with a second place in Paris-Tours, beaten in a sprint of three by fellow countryman and defending champion Philippe Gilbert.

2010[edit]

Boonen in the 2010 Tour of Flanders

Boonen became third in the Tour of Qatar, winning two stages, then won stage five of the Tour of Oman. He won the second stage of Tirreno-Adriatico, before finishing second to Óscar Freire in Milan – San Remo. Boonen came second to Fabian Cancellara in the E3 Prijs Vlaanderen – Harelbeke,[12] a result replicated at the Tour of Flanders. He came fifth in Paris–Roubaix the following week.

Boonen missed most of the rest of the season – including the Tour de France, the Belgian and the world championships – due to tendinitis in his left knee caused by crashes at the Tour of California and the Tour de Suisse. He returned to racing in October at the Circuit Franco-Belge and Paris-Tours.

2011[edit]

Boonen began the season by winning the opening stage of the 2011 Tour of Qatar. He won Gent–Wevelgem, came fourth in the Tour of Flanders and dropped out of Paris–Roubaix after crashing. Boonen also crashed on stage five of the Tour de France. His injuries forced him to abandon on stage seven. Boonen fell again in the Vuelta a España, which made him miss the world championship.

2012[edit]

Boonen won 2012 Paris–Roubaix for the fourth time, tying the record held by Roger De Vlaeminck.

Boonen began 2012 season by winning stage seven of his first race, the Tour de San Luis. In February, he won the Tour of Qatar, winning two stages and the points classification, and finished second to Sep Vanmarcke in Omloop Het Nieuwsblad.

Boonen won the second stage of Paris–Nice. He won the E3 Harelbeke and Gent–Wevelgem two days later. He was favourite for the Tour of Flanders, which he won in a sprint against Filippo Pozzato and Alessandro Ballan. His third victory equalled those of Achiel Buysse, Fiorenzo Magni, Eric Leman and Johan Museeuw. His fourth win in Paris-Roubaix equalled Roger De Vlaeminck. Boonen was first to win the Tour of Flanders and Paris Roubaix double twice. He is also the first to win E3 Harelbeke, Gent–Wevelgem, Tour of Flanders and Paris–Roubaix in the same year.

Boonen returned to racing at the Tour of California. He won the national championship title in June, taking the tricolor jersey from Philippe Gilbert.[13]

Boonen skipped the Tour de France to prepare for the Olympic road race, riding the shorter Tour of Poland instead. He crashed in the first stage and withdrew on the fifth [14] with a broken rib,.[15] He recovered in time for the Olympics, and came 28th.[16]

Boonen won the first edition of the two-day stage race World Ports Classic, winning the first stage in a sprint. He won the points classification and the overall lead after coming third on the second stage.[17] One week later Boonen won Paris–Brussels.

2013[edit]

In January, Boonen spent a week in hospital with a serious infection after suffering a wound on his elbow.[18] He returned to action in February in the Tour of Oman but could finish only 83rd in the General Classification.[19] In March, he retired from both Gent–Wevelgem and the Tour of Flanders following crashes.[20][21] He did not take the start of Paris–Roubaix when a fractured rib was diagnosed.[22] Boonen won his first race of the year at the Heiste Pijl, an event not classified by the UCI,[23] then was the victor of the second stage of the Tour de Wallonie in July.[24]

Personal life[edit]

Boonen used to live in Balen, in the Flemish Region of Belgium until moving to Monaco in late 2005. He stayed there a few years until deciding to move back to Belgium in early 2012.[25]

Palmares[edit]

2001
1st Zellik – Galmaarden
2002
1st Stage 1 Volta a Catalunya
1st Stage 2 International Uniqua Classic
1st Wilrijk
3rd Paris–Roubaix
2003
1st Stage 3 Tour of Belgium
2004
1st Gent–Wevelgem
Tour de France
1st Stages 6 & 20
1st E3 Prijs Vlaanderen
1st Grote Scheldeprijs
1st Jersey yellow.svg Overall Tour de Picardie
1st Jersey green.svg Points classification
1st Stages 1 & 2
Deutschland Tour
1st Stages 2 & 7
1st Stage 1 Vuelta a Andalucía
Ster Elektrotour
1st Prologue & Stage 1
Circuit Franco-Belge
1st Stages 3 & 4
1st Stage 3 Tour of Britain
1st GP Rik Van Steenbergen
3rd Overall Tour of Qatar
1st Jersey grey.svg Points classification
1st Young rider classification
1st Stage 2
2005
1st MaillotMundial.PNG World Road Race Championships
Tour de France
1st Stages 2 & 3
Paris–Nice
1st Stages 1 & 2
1st Paris–Roubaix
1st Tour of Flanders
1st E3 Prijs Vlaanderen
1st Jersey yellow.svg Overall, Tour of Belgium
1st Stages 1 & 2
4th Overall Tour of Qatar
1st Jersey grey.svg Points classification
1st Stages 1 & 2
10th Overall Tour de Picardie
1st Stage 2
2006
1st Tour of Flanders
Paris–Nice
1st Stages 1, 2 & 4
1st E3 Prijs Vlaanderen
1st Doha International GP
1st Jersey yellow.svg Overall Tour of Qatar
1st Jersey grey.svg Points classification
1st Stages 1, 2, 3 & 5
1st Stage 5 Vuelta a Andalucía
1st Grote Scheldeprijs
Tour of Belgium
1st Stages 2 & 3
1st Veenendaal–Veenendaal
1st Stage 1 Tour de Suisse
Eneco Tour of Benelux
1st Stages 1, 3 & 5
1st Stage 6 Tour of Britain
2nd Paris–Roubaix
Tour de France
Held Jersey yellow.svg Maillot Jaune from Stages 3–6
2007
Tour de France
1st Jersey green.svg Points classification
1st Stages 6 & 12
1st Stage 4 Vuelta a Andalucía
1st Kuurne–Brussels–Kuurne
1st Dwars door Vlaanderen
1st E3 Prijs Vlaanderen
2nd Overall Tour of Qatar
1st Jersey grey.svg Points classification
1st Stages 1 (TTT), 2, 3, 4 & 6
3rd Omloop "Het Volk"
3rd Milan – San Remo
2008
1st Paris–Roubaix
Vuelta a España
1st Stages 3 & 16
1st Jersey yellow.svg Overall Tour of Qatar
1st Jersey grey.svg Points classification
1st Stages 1 (TTT), 2, 3 & 6
1st Stage 2 Tour of California
1st Stage 5 Tour of Belgium
1st Stage 4 Ster Elektrotoer
1st Stage 7 Österreich Rundfahrt
1st Stage 1 Tour de Wallonie
Eneco Tour
1st Stages 1 & 4
1st Stage 1 Circuit Franco-Belge
2nd Grote Scheldeprijs
2009
1st MaillotBélgica.PNG National Road Race Championships
1st Paris–Roubaix
1st Kuurne–Brussels–Kuurne
1st Stage 3 Eneco Tour
1st Jersey yellow.svg Overall Tour of Qatar
1st Stage 3
1st Stage 3 Circuit Franco-Belge
2nd E3 Prijs Vlaanderen
2nd Paris–Tours
3rd Dwars door Vlaanderen
2010
1st Stage 5 Tour of Oman
1st Stage 2 Tirreno–Adriatico
2nd Milan – San Remo
2nd E3 Prijs Vlaanderen
2nd Tour of Flanders
3rd Overall Tour of Qatar
1st Stages 3 & 5
5th Paris–Roubaix
2011
1st Stage 1 Tour of Qatar
1st Gent–Wevelgem
4th Tour of Flanders
2012
1st MaillotMundial.PNG World Team Time Trial Championships
1st MaillotBélgica.PNG National Road Race Championships
1st Jersey yellow.svg Overall Tour of Qatar
1st Jersey grey.svg Points classification
1st Stages 1 & 4
1st Jersey light blue.svg Overall World Ports Classic
1st Jersey green.svg Points classification
1st Stage 1
1st Paris–Roubaix
1st Tour of Flanders
1st Gent–Wevelgem
1st E3 Harelbeke
1st Paris–Brussels
1st Stage 2 Paris–Nice
1st Stage 7 Tour de San Luis
2nd Omloop Het Nieuwsblad
4th Vattenfall Cyclassics
2013
1st Heistse Pijl
1st Stage 2 Tour de Wallonie
7th E3 Harelbeke
2014
1st Kuurne–Brussels–Kuurne
Tour of Belgium
1st Stages 1 & 2
2nd Overall Tour of Qatar
1st Jersey grey.svg Points classification
1st Stages 2 & 4
3rd National Road Race Championships
5th Gent–Wevelgem
7th Tour of Flanders
10th Paris–Roubaix

Monuments results timeline[edit]

Monument 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Milan – San Remo 78 75 8 4 3 29 15 2 28 22 DNF
Tour of Flanders 24 25 25 1 1 12 17 20 2 4 1 DNF 7
Paris–Roubaix 3 24 9 1 2 6 1 1 5 DNF 1 10
Liège–Bastogne–Liège
Giro di Lombardia

DNF = Did not finish
— = Did not compete

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ In Michael Barry's book 'Racing with Shadows' he makes claim that the result of the 2006 Tour of Flanders was arranged. "Then one of our teammates, Leif Hoste, made the race winning attack with the key rival, TomBoonen, whose defeat had been the focus of our team meetings. Immediately they cooperated forging a gap ahead of George and the others. As I watched the scenario unfold, the riders spoke for a few moments together and then with our directeur, who followed in the team car. It was apparent that a deal had been made, with George left out, his legs strong enough to win but his hands tied by shady racing tactics and backroom deals"

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Omega Pharma-Quick-Step Cycling Team (OPQ) – BEL". UCI World Tour. Union Cycliste Internationale. Retrieved 9 January 2013. 
  2. ^ http://www.sportitalia.com/ShortNews.aspx?id=4366 In Italian
  3. ^ Jones, Jeff; Stevenson, John (16 April 2002). "News for April 16, 2002 – Boonen "the next Museeuw"". cyclingnews.com. Retrieved 2010-11-13. 
  4. ^ "News for January 26, 2003 – Boomin' Boonen comes to Adelaide". cyclingnews.com. 26 January 2003. Retrieved 2010-11-13. 
  5. ^ "Parijs-Roubaix: Boonen, amper 24 jaar, nu al ontzagwekkend" (in Dutch). volkskrant.nl. 11 April 2005. Retrieved 2010-11-13. 
  6. ^ "Boonen is negotiating with French team Bouygues" (in dutch). sporza.be. 10 June 2008. 
  7. ^ "Boonen participation in Tour de France to be decided: Ouick Step". afp.google.com. 11 June 2008. 
  8. ^ "Former world champion Tom Boonen barred from Tour de France". afp.google.com. 11 June 2008. 
  9. ^ "Boonen could face trial in Belgium". ESPN. 6 January 2009. Retrieved 13 November 2010. 
  10. ^ "Belgian Court Scraps Case Against Cyclist Boonen". Sports Illustrated/CNN. 3 February 2009. [dead link]
  11. ^ "Boonen suspended after drugs test". BBC. 9 May 2009. 
  12. ^ Brecht Decaluwé (27 March 2010). "Cancellara claims E3 Prijs Vlaanderen – Harelbeke". Cycling News (Future Publishing Limited). Retrieved 13 August 2012. 
  13. ^ Brecht Decaluwé (24 June 2012). "Boonen returns to tricolor jersey". Cycling News (Future Publishing Limited). Retrieved 1 September 2012. 
  14. ^ Ben Atkins (14 July 2012). "Tom Boonen abandons Tour of Poland with aftereffects of stage one crash". Velo Nation (Velo Nation LLC). Retrieved 1 September 2012. 
  15. ^ "Tom Boonen Recovers From Broken Rib". CTV Olympics (2012 7048467 Canada Inc.). 19 July 2012. Retrieved 1 September 2012. 
  16. ^ "Men's Road Race". London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games (BT PLC). 28 July 2012. Retrieved 1 September 2012. 
  17. ^ "Boonen wins premiere edition of World Ports Classic". Cycling News (Future Publishing Limited). 1 September 2012. Retrieved 3 September 2012. 
  18. ^ "Cycling – Boonen 'nearly had arm amputated'". Yahoo! Sports UK & Ireland. 2013-02-12. Retrieved 2013-03-31. 
  19. ^ "Cycling – Fixtures – Tour of Oman – General Classification". Yahoo! Sports UK & Ireland. 2013-02-16. Retrieved 2013-03-31. 
  20. ^ "Cycling – Boonen quits Gent-Wevelgem after crash". Yahoo! Sports UK & Ireland. 2013-03-24. Retrieved 2013-03-31. 
  21. ^ "Cycling – Cancellara claims Tour of Flanders crown". Yahoo! Sports UK & Ireland. 2013-03-31. Retrieved 2013-03-31. 
  22. ^ "Boonen diagnosed with rib fracture from Tour of Flanders crash". Cyclingnews (Future Publishing Limited). 4 April 2013. Retrieved 4 April 2013. 
  23. ^ "Boonen back to winning ways at Heistse Pijl". Cyclingnews.com (Future plc). 1 June 2013. Retrieved 16 October 2013. 
  24. ^ Ben Atkins (21 July 2013). "Tom Boonen takes a UCI-ranked victory at last in 2013 in Tour de Wallonie sprint". VeloNation (VeloNation LLC). Retrieved 16 October 2013. 
  25. ^ "Tom Boonen verhuist definitief van Monaco naar de Kempen". Het Laatse Nieuws (in Dutch). 11 January 2012. Retrieved 1 April 2012. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Steffen Wesemann
Winner of the Tour of Flanders
2005, 2006
Succeeded by
Alessandro Ballan