De Brabantse Pijl: Hermans Solo

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Narrow streets, steep climbs. 26 'walls' on the menu. A three riders break-away: De Gendt, Kirsch and Delaplace. Their gap is 4'16" with 121 km to go. A big crash 75 km to go, nothing serious but many have to stop. TFR and BMC are chasing and the gap starts decreasing.

Leaders and peloton crosse the finish line in Overijse for a first time: 3 laps of 23.4 km to go,  five hills in each lap: Hagaard, Hertstraat, Holstheide, Ijskelderlaan and Schavei.
First climb, and Kirsch gets dropped. No radio, so every flat tyre is a serious stuff: you have to rise a hand, to tell the race director who tells race radio, to wait for your team car. And the race is over.
Kirsch is caught 58 km to go. 
De Gendt and Delaplace have just a 1’53” and got caught 37 km to go. Tim De Troyer attacks, Louis Vervaeke follows, others join. A five riders break-away forms, including Vervaeke, De Troyer, Ben Hermans, Bartlomiej Matysiak and David Tanner. Then Hermans and Tanner attack the break and get a gap. They are off the road while the rest of the break is quickly back in the bunch.
26 km to go Leukemans attacks from the peloton, Vakoc, Dillier, Voss, Vermote join. But the leading duo resists. 2.5 km ahead, Hermans goes solo. Gilbert amongst others is trying to bridge. Hermans doesn't stop, gets to the line and takes a splendid solo victory. Chapeau!

Ben Hermans:
“The race was really hard in the beginning but I could stay on the wheels and save energy. I’ve done this race several times and I’d suffered in the past. But I told Philippe (Gilbert) that (I felt good) and said he should tell me if he wants to me to make the race hard and go in a counter-attack. That’s what I did and it went all good and I could win the race.
I was very scared of being caught. You don’t have many chances to win a race in this way, if you’re not explosive and you don’t have a sprint like Philippe, you don’t have many chances. I was in a good position and had to push all the watts I had and lucky it was enough.
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Michael Matthews:
“I had really good legs today and my team positioned me really well but unfortunately I had no teammates left in the last 15km. I just had to play my cards hoping that another team as going to bring it back. Unfortunately I won the sprint to the line but it was second, not for first.
his is a race that suits me and that I enjoy racing. It’s really nice weather today and it’s a positive race to prepare for the Ardennes too. I’ll be back next year, trying to win it,” 

Louis Vervaeke:
"Ppfff I really angry on myself... Hade to act different int the front group when the 2 riders started to fight... #lessonlearned #bpl"

Paul Martens:
“I felt good today during the race.
In the sprint, I was able to tell that I haven’t raced for three weeks because I felt that I still missed some power. I’m happy, though.
It was very tough also because of the heat. It was the first hot race day of the year, which is always unique. That good feeling is back, which makes me happy.”
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Fabio Felline: 
“I tried to go in the late breakaways, but then all were caught back. It was a really strange race – super fast, and a tactical game at the end. My sprint was not super, but oh well, I did all I could today. I have to say thank you to the team – they stayed around me all race; they were incredible. 
There wasn't one key moment that stands out because at the end there were so many key moments. I tried to take my chance in a breakaway but it didn’t work out. It was just hard and fast all day. Now I am looking forward to the next race - Amstel Gold - on Sunday.”

Tony Gallopin: 
“The situation this year is different than last season, when I had taken part in some Flemish classics. Now I specifically prepared for the Ardennes classics. After Milan-Sanremo I took some rest, then I went on a training camp and last week I participated in the Vuelta al País Vasco. The legs felt good today. I tried a few times to escape from the chase group, but I didn’t succeed. I had the feeling Matthews shadowed me. The fourth place isn’t what I had hoped for, but it proves that my shapes is fine and it gives me confidence for the Ardennes races.”

Thomas De Gendt: 
“It was not very fun today. It took a while before a front group was formed, we had to fight eighty kilometres long. When I jumped away I hoped to get several riders with me, it stopped after two. Then you know it won’t be easy, although we worked together pretty well. We didn’t get much more than four minutes lead. The good thing was the team didn’t have to work in the peloton, that’s why my attack was useful after all.”

1 Ben Hermans (Bel) BMC Racing Team 4:45:14  
2 Michael Matthews (Aus) Orica GreenEdge 0:00:02  
3 Philippe Gilbert (Bel) BMC Racing Team  
4 Tony Gallopin (Fra) Lotto Soudal  
5 Davide Rebellin (Ita) CCC Sprandi Polkowice  
6 Nathan Haas (Aus) Cannondale-Garmin Pro Cycling Team  
7 Fabio Felline (Ita) Trek Factory Racing  
8 Maurits Lammertink (Ned) Team Roompot Oranje Peloton  
9 Maciej Paterski (Pol) CCC Sprandi Polkowice  
10 Dries Devenyns (Bel) IAM Cycling  
11 Paul Martens (Ger) Team LottoNL-Jumbo  
12 Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn) Team Europcar  
13 Rudy Molard (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits  
14 Rasmus Guldhammer (Den) Cult Energy Pro Cycling  
15 Michel Kreder (Ned) Team Roompot Oranje Peloton  
16 Javier Megias Leal (Spa) Team Novo Nordisk 0:00:14  
17 Marco Marcato (Ita) Wanty - Groupe Gobert 0:00:16  
18 Kristian Sbaragli (Ita) MTN - Qhubeka 0:00:19  
19 Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Etixx - Quick-Step  
20 Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  
21 Floris De Tier (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise 0:00:24  
22 Luis Angel Mate Mardones (Spa) Cofidis, Solutions Credits  
23 Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) IAM Cycling  
24 Silvan Dillier (Swi) BMC Racing Team 0:00:28  
25 Victor Campenaerts (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise 0:00:32  
26 Gianni Meersman (Bel) Etixx - Quick-Step  
27 Huub Duyn (Ned) Team Roompot Oranje Peloton 0:00:38  
28 Marco Canola (Ita) UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling 0:00:42  
29 Paul Voss (Ger) Bora-Argon 18 0:00:47  
30 David Tanner (Aus) IAM Cycling  
31 Patrick Konrad (Aut) Bora-Argon 18 0:00:52  
32 Serge Pauwels (Bel) MTN - Qhubeka 0:00:53  
33 Sander Armee (Bel) Lotto Soudal 0:01:02  
34 Pieter Jacobs (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise  
35 Stéphane Rossetto (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits  
36 Mirko Selvaggi (Ita) Wanty - Groupe Gobert  
37 Damiano Caruso (Ita) BMC Racing Team  
38 Vicente Reynes Mimo (Spa) IAM Cycling 0:01:05  
39 Armindo Fonseca (Fra) Bretagne-Séché Environnement  
40 Dylan Teuns (Bel) BMC Racing Team 0:01:09  
41 Francesco Gavazzi (Ita) Southeast  
42 Pierre-Luc Perichon (Fra) Bretagne-Séché Environnement 0:01:23  
43 Björn Leukemans (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert 0:01:32  
44 Preben Van Hecke (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise  
45 Enrico Barbin (Ita) Bardiani CSF 0:01:45  
46 Thomas Voeckler (Fra) Team Europcar 0:01:51  
47 David Lozano Riba (Spa) Team Novo Nordisk 0:02:02  
48 Fabio Taborre (Ita) Androni Giocattoli 0:02:06  
49 Mike Terpstra (Ned) Team Roompot Oranje Peloton  
50 Marco Bandiera (Ita) Androni Giocattoli 0:02:16  
51 Julien Vermote (Bel) Etixx - Quick-Step 0:02:31  
52 Simone Ponzi (Ita) Southeast 0:02:53  
53 Marc Demaar (Ned) Team Roompot Oranje Peloton  
54 Dominik Nerz (Ger) Bora-Argon 18  
55 Stefan Schumacher (Ger) CCC Sprandi Polkowice  
56 Cesare Benedetti (Ita) Bora-Argon 18  
57 Youcef Reguigui (Alg) MTN - Qhubeka 0:02:58  
58 Kristof Vandewalle (Bel) Trek Factory Racing  
59 Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Team LottoNL-Jumbo  
60 Davide Villella (Ita) Cannondale-Garmin Pro Cycling Team 0:03:03  
61 Petr Vakoc (Cze) Etixx - Quick-Step  
62 Clément Venturini (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits  
63 Bryan Coquard (Fra) Team Europcar 0:03:22  
64 Francis De Greef (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert 0:04:39  
65 Charles Planet (Fra) Team Novo Nordisk 0:05:53  
66 Arthur Van Overberghe (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise  
67 Linus Gerdemann (Ger) Cult Energy Pro Cycling  
68 Joonas Henttala (Fin) Team Novo Nordisk  
69 Lucas Euser (USA) UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling  
70 Reinier Honig (Ned) Team Roompot Oranje Peloton  
71 Thomas Sprengers (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise  
72 Kiel Reijnen (USA) UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling  
73 Fumiyuki Beppu (Jpn) Trek Factory Racing  
74 Patrick Schelling (Swi) IAM Cycling  
75 Natnael Berhane (Eri) MTN - Qhubeka  
76 Dennis Vanendert (Bel) Lotto Soudal  
77 Yannick Eijssen (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert  
78 Emanuel Buchmann (Ger) Bora-Argon 18  
79 Sébastien Minard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  
80 Mikael Cherel (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  
81 Jaroslaw Marycz (Pol) CCC Sprandi Polkowice  
82 Bartlomiej Matysiak (Pol) CCC Sprandi Polkowice  
83 Branislau Samoilau (Blr) CCC Sprandi Polkowice  
84 Mathew Hayman (Aus) Orica GreenEdge  
85 Manuel Senni (Ita) BMC Racing Team  
86 Florian Vachon (Fra) Bretagne-Séché Environnement  
87 Amaël Moinard (Fra) BMC Racing Team  
88 Enrico Battaglin (Ita) Bardiani CSF  
89 Tom Stamsnijder (Ned) Team Giant-Alpecin  
90 Pieter Vanspeybrouck (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise  
91 Matej Mohoric (Slo) Cannondale-Garmin Pro Cycling Team 0:10:14  
92 Tosh Van Der Sande (Bel) Lotto Soudal  
93 Alessandro Bazzana (Ita) UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling  
94 Thierry Hupond (Fra) Team Giant-Alpecin  
95 Bertjan Lindeman (Ned) Team LottoNL-Jumbo  
96 Marco Benfatto (Ita) Androni Giocattoli  
97 Johannes Fröhlinger (Ger) Team Giant-Alpecin  
98 Nick Van Der Lijke (Ned) Team LottoNL-Jumbo  
99 Daniel Teklehaimanot (Eri) MTN - Qhubeka  
100 Matteo Busato (Ita) Southeast  
101 Caleb Fairly (USA) Team Giant-Alpecin  
102 Pim Ligthart (Ned) Lotto Soudal  
103 Thomas Degand (Bel) IAM Cycling  
104 Zico Waeytens (Bel) Team Giant-Alpecin 0:10:35  
105 Leigh Howard (Aus) Orica GreenEdge  
106 Federico Zurlo (Ita) UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling  
DNF Campbell Flakemore (Aus) BMC Racing Team  
DNF Jan Bakelants (Bel) AG2R La Mondiale  
DNF Biel Kadri (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  
DNF Sébastien Turgot (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  
DNF Nikolas Maes (Bel) Etixx - Quick-Step  
DNF Yves Lampaert (Bel) Etixx - Quick-Step  
DNF Matthias Brandle (Aut) IAM Cycling  
DNF Pirmin Lang (Swi) IAM Cycling  
DNF Thomas De Gendt (Bel) Lotto Soudal  
DNF Gert Dockx (Bel) Lotto Soudal  
DNF Louis Vervaeke (Bel) Lotto Soudal  
DNF Damien Howson (Aus) Orica GreenEdge  
DNF Brett Lancaster (Aus) Orica GreenEdge  
DNF Christian Meier (Can) Orica GreenEdge  
DNF Cameron Meyer (Aus) Orica GreenEdge  
DNF Svein Tuft (Can) Orica GreenEdge  
DNF Alberto Bettiol (Ita) Cannondale-Garmin Pro Cycling Team  
DNF Ramunas Navardauskas (Ltu) Cannondale-Garmin Pro Cycling Team  
DNF Cheng Ji (Chn) Team Giant-Alpecin  
DNF Fredrik Ludvigsson (Swe) Team Giant-Alpecin  
DNF Brian Bulgac (Ned) Team LottoNL-Jumbo  
DNF Barry Markus (Ned) Team LottoNL-Jumbo  
DNF Moreno Hofland (Ned) Team LottoNL-Jumbo  
DNF Mike Teunissen (Ned) Team LottoNL-Jumbo  
DNF Gert Steegmans (Bel) Trek Factory Racing  
DNF Jasper Stuyven (Bel) Trek Factory Racing  
DNF Danny Van Poppel (Ned) Trek Factory Racing  
DNF Calvin Watson (Aus) Trek Factory Racing  
DNF Francesco Chicchi (Ita) Androni Giocattoli  
DNF Carlos Galviz (Ven) Androni Giocattoli  
DNF Alberto Nardin (Ita) Androni Giocattoli  
DNF Frantisek Padour (Cze) Androni Giocattoli  
DNF Sonny Colbrelli (Ita) Bardiani CSF  
DNF Simone Andreetta (Ita) Bardiani CSF  
DNF Nicola Boem (Ita) Bardiani CSF  
DNF Andrea Piechele (Ita) Bardiani CSF  
DNF Stefano Pirazzi (Ita) Bardiani CSF  
DNF Nicola Ruffoni (Ita) Bardiani CSF  
DNF Phil Bauhaus (Ger) Bora-Argon 18  
DNF Zakkari Dempster (Aus) Bora-Argon 18  
DNF Bartosz Huzarski (Pol) Bora-Argon 18  
DNF Jonathan Hivert (Fra) Bretagne-Séché Environnement  
DNF Anthony Delaplace (Fra) Bretagne-Séché Environnement  
DNF Brice Feillu (Fra) Bretagne-Séché Environnement  
DNF Arnaud Gerard (Fra) Bretagne-Séché Environnement  
DNF Grega Bole (Slo) CCC Sprandi Polkowice  
DNF Marek Rutkiewicz (Pol) CCC Sprandi Polkowice  
DNF Romain Hardy (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits  
DNF Adrien Petit (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits  
DNF Karel Hnik (Cze) Cult Energy Pro Cycling  
DNF Alex Kirsch (Lux) Cult Energy Pro Cycling  
DNF Christian Mager (Ger) Cult Energy Pro Cycling  
DNF Michael Reihs (Den) Cult Energy Pro Cycling  
DNF Martin Mortensen (Den) Cult Energy Pro Cycling  
DNF Joel Zangerle (Lux) Cult Energy Pro Cycling  
DNF Nick Dougall (RSA) MTN - Qhubeka  
DNF Songezo Jim (RSA) MTN - Qhubeka  
DNF Jay Robert Thomson (RSA) MTN - Qhubeka  
DNF Johnny Hoogerland (Ned) Team Roompot Oranje Peloton  
DNF Jesper Asselman (Ned) Team Roompot Oranje Peloton  
DNF Alessandro Petacchi (Ita) Southeast  
DNF Giorgio Cecchinel (Ita) Southeast  
DNF Samuele Conti (Ita) Southeast  
DNF Elia Favilli (Ita) Southeast  
DNF Eugert Zhupa (Alb) Southeast  
DNF Jerome Cousin (Fra) Team Europcar  
DNF Tony Hurel (Fra) Team Europcar  
DNF Julien Morice (Fra) Team Europcar  
DNF Bryan Naulleau (Fra) Team Europcar  
DNF Angelo Tulik (Fra) Team Europcar  
DNF Kevin De Mesmaeker (Bel) Team Novo Nordisk  
DNF Nicolas Lefrancois (Fra) Team Novo Nordisk  
DNF Andrea Peron (Ita) Team Novo Nordisk  
DNF Christopher Williams (Aus) Team Novo Nordisk  
DNF Sander Helven (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise  
DNF Davide Frattini (Ita) UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling  
DNF Christopher Jones (USA) UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling  
DNF Daniele Ratto (Ita) UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling  
DNF Tim De Troyer (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert  
DNF Lander Seynaeve (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert  
DNF Marinus Cornelis Minnaard (Ned) Wanty - Groupe Gobert  
DNS Ben Gastauer (Lux) AG2R La Mondiale  
DNS Moreno Moser (Ita) Cannondale-Garmin Pro Cycling Team  
DNS Nathan Brown (USA) Cannondale-Garmin Pro Cycling Team  
DNS Alex Howes (USA) Cannondale-Garmin Pro Cycling Team

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