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Mayho sprints to first win in Belgium

On top: Mayho stands on the podium after winning in Geraardsbergen

Dominique Mayho outsprinted the field to capture a maiden victory in Belgium yesterday.

The Jonge Rakkers Vollezele team member won the Moerbeke 112 km road race under clear skies in Geraardsbergen and was also the first rider in the elite division across the line.

Tom Timmermans, of Van Eyck Sport, and Wouter Persoon, of Arrow Cycling Team, finished second and third behind the Bermuda cyclist, who joined his new team in Belgium at the beginning of the season.

“It feels great to win a race here in Belgium,” Mayho said. “I was not expecting to be up there fighting for the win, so this is a great surprise.”

Mayho was among a group of around 14 riders that broke away from the peloton with two of the seven laps remaining.

However, the leaders were reeled back in by the chasing pack on the last lap and the race ultimately came down to a sprint finish.

With around 800 metres to go, Mayho’s team-mate Vitor Zucco, who competed in the under-23 division, led him towards the front of the field.

But there was still plenty for the NatWest Island Games and Junior Caribbean Championships gold medal-winner to do after he was overtaken by another rider approaching the finish line.

With the title hanging in the balance, Mayho caught on to the leader’s wheel and followed briefly before coming around him to take the win.

“The cycling community in Bermuda is thrilled to see Dominique have such a result in Belgium already,” Peter Dunne, the Bermuda Bicycle Association president, said.

“We know how hard the racing is there, so for Dominique to out-sprint the field is a great accomplishment and one which makes us even more proud of him.”

Mayho took another step towards his dream of racing professionally after joining Jonge Rakkers Vollezele’s elite team at the beginning of April.

The 22-year-old is already familiar with the terrain in Belgium having competed in a few races in the European country as an amateur last year.

“I’m really excited to get a chance to race at this level and prove myself,” Mayho said.

“It’s going to be a long, hard season and I’m looking forward to that. I think it’s going to be a good season.”

Mayho’s season did not get off to the best of starts after he crashed in his first race and pulled out of his third because of snow.