Jolien D’Hoore sprints to victory at Gent-Wevelgem | CyclingTips

Jolien D'Hoore sprints to victory at Gent-Wevelgem | CyclingTips

On the finish of the primary cobbled Basic of the season, Jolien D’Hoore (Boels-Dolmans) sprinted to her first victory of 2020.

D’Hoore was one in every of a breakaway of 11 riders who separated themselves from the peloton on the legendary Kemmelberg climb and barely stayed away to battle for the win within the dash.

D’Hoore took a transparent win within the ultimate kick forward of her newly topped Belgian nationwide champion Lotte Kopecky (Lotto-Soudal), with Lisa Brennauer (Ceratizit-WNT) taking third on the day.

The way it occurred

Riders tried to ascertain breakaway strikes for a lot of the stage however nothing caught within the first hour of racing. The utmost benefit that any escapees acquired was nonetheless underneath 30 seconds, however they weren’t capable of get away earlier than the Scherpenburg, the primary of seven climbs, introduced the peloton collectively as soon as once more.

Over the following few climbs, the Vidaigneberg and the Baneberg, riders have been spat out the again of the peloton however there was nonetheless no makes an attempt of riders to get off the entrance. The Kemmelberg, one of many decisive climbs of the race, broke the peloton aside, however when the climb was over the peloton all got here collectively once more. Even over the Plugstreets, with 47km to go, when the peloton fractured, it didn’t final lengthy. The tempo eased excessive and a number of the dropped riders have been capable of regain contact with the peloton.

With the ultimate climbs of the day in sight, Trek-Segafredo converged on the entrance of the peloton to extend the tempo. On the base of the penultimate climb of the day, the Monteberg, Trek-Segafredo began to lose momentum Sunweb took over the pacemaking. With the Monteberg and the Kemmelberg so shut collectively the riders distanced on the Monteberg weren’t capable of regain contact earlier than the entrance of the race hit the cobbled ascent. Gaps shaped on the climb as Elisa Longo Borghini of Trek-Segafredo set the tempo excessive of the Kemmelberg.

With the climbs behind them and solely 35km to go, the race was on in full. Gaps that had seemed promising on the climb grew to become extra established on the descent, as just a few riders, together with Liane Lippert of Sunweb, crashed on one of many technical corners.

When the mud of the Kemmelberg settled it was a gaggle of 11 riders that discovered themselves on the entrance of the race. Trek-Segafredo had the numbers, with Ladies’s World Tour chief Lizzie Deignan, Ellen van Dijk, and Elisa Longo Borghini. Two Boels-Dolmans riders additionally made the choice, D’Hoore, and Amy Pieters. The vast majority of the lead group consisted of solo riders, together with Kopecky, Sarah Roy (Mitchelton Scott), Lisa Brennauer, Demi Vollering (Parkhotel Valkenburg), Marta Cavalli (Valcar-Journey & Service), and Lauren Stephens (Tibco SVB).

Behind the 11 leaders Workforce Sunweb, CCC-Liv, Canyon-SRAM, and Paule Ka had joined forces to carry again the leaders. Into the ultimate 20 km of the race the hole from the chasing, a lot decreased, peloton to the leaders was hovering round 34 seconds and the cooperation of the breakaway was beginning to collapse.

Into the ultimate 10km of the race, the dance started: Who would work, and who would attempt to simply sit on? The benefit for the entrance group was solely 20 seconds, and the group behind had extra legs than these in entrance. As extra riders stopped pulling within the entrance, the hole got here all the way down to underneath 20 seconds within the ultimate 5km.

Assaults began to fly off the entrance nearing the ultimate 3km. Vollering was the primary to strive, adopted by Van Dijk. Amy Pieters tried her luck, chased down by Longo Borghini. The chasing peloton was tantalizingly near the catching the entrance of the race, solely 7 seconds within the ultimate 2km, however the catch was by no means made.

On the finish of an extremely thrilling 5km of attacking, it got here all the way down to a dash between the breakaway riders, with D’Hoore taking the victory. The win marks the primary of the 2020 season for D’Hoore, who, like many others, has barely had any race days this yr.

D’Hoore’s Boels-Dolmans group wins the savviest teamwork award. Though Amy Pieters wasn’t on the entrance to steer out D’Hoore, she initiated the dash from the again of the group, forcing Kopecky, who the strongest sprinter within the finale, to begin her dash too early.

Kopecky nonetheless took second place, adopted by Brennauer to spherical out the rostrum.

Prime 10

1 D’HOORE Jolien (Boels – Dolmans Biking Workforce) 3:33:15
2 KOPECKY Lotte (Lotto Soudal Girls)
3 BRENNAUER Lisa (Ceratizit-WNT Professional Biking)
4 ROY Sarah (Mitchelton-Scott)
5 CAVALLI Marta (Valcar – Journey & Service)
6 STEPHENS Lauren (Workforce TIBCO – SVB)
7 VOLLERING Demi (Parkhotel Valkenburg)
8 DEIGNAN Elizabeth (Trek-Segafredo Ladies)
9 PIETERS Amy (Boels – Dolmans Biking Workforce) 0:05
10 LONGO BORGHINI Elisa (Trek-Segafredo Ladies) 0:08

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