Teuns and Vliegen on the Attack at Dwars Door Vlaanderen22. March 2017, Waregem (BEL) — Road Team
Two of BMC Racing Team’s youngest riders gave it everything at Dwars door Vlaanderen, with Belgians Dylan Teuns and Loïc Vliegen making the first decisive move of the day.
The race, making its UCI WorldTour debut, saw the peloton tackle 203km of cobbled racing, including many of the climbs and cobble sectors of the upcoming Ronde van Vlaanderen.
A six-rider breakaway went clear after 25km of racing and gained a steady lead of more than five minutes on the relaxed peloton. The gap had started to fall at the half-way mark and with 80km remaining, Teuns and Vliegen attacked from the bunch with a small group that went on to catch the breakaway shortly after.
Solid work from the 15 riders saw their lead extend to almost a minute on the peloton, where Jempy Drucker and Stefan Küng were in the mix for BMC Racing Team.
As the pace picked up, Philippe Gilbert (Quickstep-Floors) initiated the winning move inside the final 33km with teammate Yves Lampaert, Luke Durbridge (ORICA-SCOTT) and Alexey Lutsenko (Astana Pro Team), while behind Teuns and Vliegen put everything on the line to try and bridge to the group.
The quartet gained more than a minute on the two chase groups, which had come back together, and had enough of an advantage to stay away. Lampaert attacked 6km to go and took the solo win, while Gilbert and Lutsenko rounded out the podium.
Drucker, Küng, and Vliegen were left to fight it out in the reduced peloton behind.
Quotes from the Finish Line
Fabio Baldato, Sports Director:
“The guys did a great race; they did what we planned. Dylan Teuns and Loïc Vliegen were instructed to cover these moves and leave Jempy Drucker and Stefan Küng for the final. I didn’t expect Gilbert to move so early but Dylan and Loïc did well to go at that time and anticipate the race. It’s a little bit disappointing because Dylan and Loïc were really close to staying with the four riders when they went, so perhaps we missed a top five result. I think they deserved to be there. They did a great race and they were smart. I’m satisfied with how they raced and it’s definitely good experience for these young riders.”
“This was my first time racing at Dwars door Vlaanderen and I know the climbs and the parcours a bit, but not every single road. So, I needed to focus a lot at every point of the race. At the moment when the four riders went I was in sixth position on the climb and we were all riding in the gutter. The first four went and then the rider who was in fifth wheel let a gap open, so I had to then ride on the cobbles. Before the top I came close to them but once we reached the top they were about 20 meters in front and I couldn’t close to them. I waited for the guys behind and we were chasing full gas but some of these riders had teammates in front so it didn’t work really well. The group with Stefan Küng and Jempy Drucker came back and with 10km to go, I gave my last effort to try and close the gap but it didn’t happen.”
“I’m happy with my race and my performance today. But, when you do such a good race and are up there when it counts, when the race is hard, it’s disappointing that I couldn’t make a nice result for myself because this was an open race for the team, without a big leader. My big goal is still four weeks away so I’m happy with my shape at the moment and I feel I’m making progress every week.”
Dwars door Vlaanderen
Roeselare > Waregem (203.4km)
Top 3: 1. Yves Lampeart (Quickstep-Floors), 2. Philippe Gilbert (Quickstep-Floors), 3. Alexey Lutsenko (Astana Pro Team).