Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne: Stuyven Hero!

It was expected rain today in Florence, rain agan all day, pourring rain without a break. And no training session as a consequence.
Instead at 8 am it wasn't raining and son's ds called to say we must be at 9.15 at the meeting point. We had a very quickly break-fast and hurried up to load the bike on the car and when I was about to start I saw my improbable love walking by the other side of the road. He was supposed to come today but he didn't phone yesterday so I had not calculated him in my plann. Then there wasn't a plann anymore. We loaded him too and speeded up toward Pontassieve.
The river was swollen and dirty, high on the banks and the road was wet but it didn't rain until noon. Son trained with the team and rode home with his mates, my love and I had a coffee and cake by La bottega a Rosano  and then we all went to my father's b-day lunch.
Meanwhile in Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne a break away had taken off after just 18 km, including Van Melsen, Turgot, Trosino, Boy van Poppel, De Vries, Van Ginneken, Barker, Boucher, Druyts, De Man and Cardis
Now I'm back home and ready to follow the race. Let me check the situation: 87.5 km to go the break's advantage is 4'42"... Earlier in the race Giacomo Nizzolo stopped due to stomachache..
Oude Kwaremont: Peter Sagan attacks and splits the peloton but all is back together 48 km to go. Gap is about 2'. 
Lotto-Saudal sets the pace and the peloton splits again. 60 km to go  gap is just 40'' to the first chasing group. Riders are bridging, the break is basicly over.
Nokereberg: Vermote attacks and brings away a selected group with also Jurgen Roelandts, Jasper Stuyven and Peter Sagan. And Sagan attacks but Vermotte closes the gap.
44 km to go the peloton is compact. Trosino attacks and goes solo but he's caught 41 km to go.
Gatto, Lagutin, Roelandts and Turgot get a slight advantage. Fluid situation, many attacks, including Boy van Poppel. SPEECHLESS!  Stig Broeckx is hit by a motorbike and crashes! 35 km to go 16 riders - including both Stuyven and van Poppel - have 35". 
Katusha and Orica are leading the chase. 18 km to go the gap is about 30".
17 km to go Stuyven attacks and goes solo. Trek play stopper in the peloton. 12.5km to go Stuyven is leading solo. The first chassing group is at 23", the peloton at 38". But the gap is increasing: 9 km to go Stuyven has got almost 40''. ALLEZ JASPER!!!
6 km to go gap is down to 23''. 5 km to gap is up again at 25 and Styven throws away his bottle.
1 km to go he knows it can be done. 200 m to go he looks back: the peloton is coming but the finish line is closer. A HUGE VICTORY for the young Stuyven and one of the most thrilling race I have ever seen!

UPDATE about Stig Broeckx: according with his Team he has a displaced fracture on the right collar bone, a rib fracture and a bruised hand. 

Jasper Stuyven:
"It means more than my stage win at the Vuelta."
"I was thinking about 2010 when I was riding here when I was World Champion (Junior), and I wanted to win that day because that year my Grand Father died who was living here. But I had bad luck when someone crashed into my bike. I think today I made up for that.
I still can't believe it. I felt really good, not all day like yesterday, but in the finale, especially when we were going into the Kwaremont. I was easily following the moves, I was always there and never on the defensive. In the end Boy [Van Poppel] did a perfect job, he was incredible to keep our group going. He was so strong! But the peloton was coming back, so Dirk [Demol, director] said to try something, so I went, and I was alone. I just powered through.  
Normally, I am not the man for solo rides; I surprised myself. But in the first lap I really paid attention to the wind, so when I went I knew what to expect, and I just gave my all. I thought that maybe Tom [Boonen] would join me because he was very active, and I also knew that he would keep the group turning behind, so I knew I was in for a hard one.
All my muscles hurt. I wanted to keep some gas for the headwind section, but it was not like I had a lot of margin. I was constantly keeping an eye on my SRM, looking at my watts and keeping the legs spinning and trying to be as aero as possible.
I was targeting this weekend, and peaked for these races. I knew with Fabian [Cancellara] not here, that this was my chance. This victory is more important for me than my stage win in the Vuelta. Today was wonderful but so hard.
I had bad luck in the spring last year and couldn't prove my value. Now I have had a good winter. I am ambitious, but I can cope with the pressure, and I hope to be in the finale for the next Classics with Fabian. I am ready; the team is ready."

Alexander Kristoff:
"Last year I was also second but I was sprinting for first that time, so this is very different. Stuvyen was very strong out there alone. I thought he would come back but he wanted something else. We did a great chase with other teams, but unfortunately for me we did not catch him". 

Nacer Bouhanni:
“It was difficult. I only had two teammates in the finale, Sénéchal and Lemoine. There was a lot of wind and the guys were coming at me from behind. I followed Kristoff and nearly got him on the line. It wasn’t a sprint for the victory, so that’s different. It’s not the same to sprint for second place. I’m not 100 per cent just yet, as planned. The real goals are still coming up with Paris-Nice and Milano-San Remo. That’s where I want to leave my mark.”

Greg Van Avermaet:
“It was a hard day with a lot of wind but I think we did a pretty good race. I tried to do everything to go for another win and we were in a good group. We were six guys trying to chase Stuyven but in the end we couldn’t catch him. It is like it is and I’m pretty happy.”

Dylan Groenewegen:
“I was too far behind after the Oude Kwaremont, but I was covered by a great team, fortunately. I made it through the finish and I gave everything I had in the sprint, but more than this fourth place wasn’t possible for me. I’m satisfied. I’ll build further off this result.”

Tom Boonen:
"Today it was a tough day, which was made tougher by the strong cold wind. I felt good and that's why I attacked a couple of times. When Stuyven went in the final, we thought it was too soon for such an action, but he managed to keep a high pace and take a well-deserved victory. Compared to Sunday, I felt good and I could really feel a diference, which comes as proof that I'm on the right track."

Jens Debusschere:
“The first part of the race went fluently. A group got away and several teams placed a rider at the front of the peloton. Everyone knew that they had to be attentive after the Oude Kwaremont, especially with the strong wind. We did it very well at first, at the Varentstraat there was another split. But when a new strong group was formed, Pim Ligthart was part of it, Jürgen Roelandts and myself had to be part of it as well. In the sprint for the second place I was badly positioned after the final turn. Therefore I couldn’t sprint as expected and I’m disappointed of course. My goal was to obtain a nice result and that didn’t happen.”

Peter Sagan:
“I enjoyed this weekend in Belgium and it was another good ride for me today, a good experience and I tried. My condition is still not optimal and I hope it will continue to improve. I tried a lot of times to attack today hoping to force a breakaway, but it seems to be my destiny that people find it hard to work together with me."

Stig Broeckx:
"Back home after surgery. Verdict: Broken collarbone, bruised hand &ribfracture. More painful: No classics. Thanks for all the messages! #KBK"


1 Jasper Stuyven (Bel) Trek-Segafredo 4:53:50
2 Alexander Kristoff (Nor) Team Katusha 0:00:17
3 Nacer Bouhanni (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
4 Dylan Groenewegen (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo
5 Lukasz Wisniowski (Pol) Etixx - Quick-Step
6 Niccolo Bonifazio (Ita) Trek-Segafredo
7 Peter Sagan (Svk) Tinkoff Team
8 Edward Theuns (Bel) Trek-Segafredo
9 Jonas Vangenechten (Bel) IAM Cycling
10 Scott Thwaites (GBr) Bora-Argon 18
11 Arnaud Demare (Fra) FDJ
12 Maxime Daniel (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
13 Adrien Petit (Fra) Direct Energie
14 Raymond Kreder (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton
15 Caleb Ewan (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge
16 Nikolas Maes (Bel) Etixx - Quick-Step
17 Daniel Oss (Ita) BMC Racing Team
18 Bert Van Lerberghe (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise
19 Tom Van Asbroeck (Bel) Team LottoNl-Jumbo
20 Jens Debusschere (Bel) Lotto Soudal
21 Pier Paolo De Negri (Ita) Nippo - Vini Fantini
22 Gerry Druyts (Bel) Crelan-Vastgoedservice Continental Team
23 Andrew Fenn (GBr) Team Sky
24 Stijn Vandenbergh (Bel) Etixx - Quick-Step 0:00:21
25 Eugert Zhupa (Alb) Southeast - Venezuela
26 Markel Irizar Aranburu (Spa) Trek-Segafredo
27 Laurent Evrard (Bel) Team 3M
28 Pierre-Luc Perichon (Fra) Fortuneo - Vital Concept
29 Gediminas Bagdonas (Ltu) AG2R La Mondiale
30 Simone Antonini (Ita) Wanty - Groupe Gobert
31 Florian Senechal (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
32 Yoann Offredo (Fra) FDJ
33 Roy Curvers (Ned) Team Giant-Alpecin
34 Pieter Jacobs (Bel) Crelan-Vastgoedservice Continental Team
35 Kevin Van Melsen (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert
36 Matteo Busato (Ita) Southeast - Venezuela
37 Xandro Meurisse (Bel) Crelan-Vastgoedservice Continental Team
38 Gijs Van Hoecke (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise
39 Jurgen Roelandts (Bel) Lotto Soudal
40 Grégory Rast (Swi) Trek-Segafredo
41 Piotr Havik (Ned) Team 3M
42 Ralf Matzka (Ger) Bora-Argon 18
43 Zico Waeytens (Bel) Team Giant-Alpecin
44 Koen De Kort (Ned) Team Giant-Alpecin
45 Ryan Anderson (Can) Direct Energie
46 Boy Van Poppel (Ned) Trek-Segafredo
47 Yanto Barker (GBr) ONE Pro Cycling
48 Sébastien Turgot (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
49 Michal Golas (Pol) Team Sky 0:00:30
50 Salvatore Puccio (Ita) Team Sky
51 Jaap De Man (Ned) Team 3M
52 Gianni Moscon (Ita) Team Sky
53 Martin Velits (Svk) Etixx - Quick-Step
54 Bert De Backer (Bel) Team Giant-Alpecin
55 Maarten Wynants (Bel) Team LottoNl-Jumbo
56 Niki Terpstra (Ned) Etixx - Quick-Step 0:00:33
57 Michael Schär (Swi) BMC Racing Team
58 Antoine Duchesne (Can) Direct Energie 0:00:35
59 Tom Stamsnijder (Ned) Team Giant-Alpecin
60 Hugo Houle (Can) AG2R La Mondiale
61 Jens Keukeleire (Bel) Orica-GreenEdge 0:00:37
62 Berden De Vries (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton
63 Floris De Tier (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise 0:00:39
64 Alexandre Pichot (Fra) Direct Energie
65 Romain Cardis (Fra) Direct Energie
66 Michel Kreder (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton 0:00:42
67 Leigh Howard (Aus) IAM Cycling
68 Cyril Lemoine (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
69 Tom Boonen (Bel) Etixx - Quick-Step 0:00:44
70 Manuel Quinziato (Ita) BMC Racing Team 0:00:47
71 Pim Ligthart (Ned) Lotto Soudal
72 Tom Bohli (Swi) BMC Racing Team
73 Jean-Pierre Drucker (Lux) BMC Racing Team
74 Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team
75 Mirko Trosino (Ita) Southeast - Venezuela
76 Dries Devenyns (Bel) IAM Cycling
77 Oliver Naesen (Bel) IAM Cycling
78 Maarten Tjallingii (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo
79 Thomas Leezer (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo
80 Heinrich Haussler (Aus) IAM Cycling 0:00:58
81 Gert Dockx (Bel) Lotto Soudal 0:01:00
82 Julien Vermote (Bel) Etixx - Quick-Step 0:01:08
83 Nils Politt (Ger) Team Katusha 0:01:40
84 Luke Rowe (GBr) Team Sky 0:01:58
85 Twan Castelijns (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo
86 Damien Gaudin (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
87 Marco Haller (Aut) Team Katusha 0:02:54
88 Jelle Wallays (Bel) Lotto Soudal 0:03:15
89 Luke Durbridge (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge 0:03:55
90 Mitchell Docker (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge
91 Frederik Frison (Bel) Lotto Soudal
92 Sergey Lagutin (Rus) Team Katusha
93 Aleksei Tcatevich (Rus) Team Katusha
94 Sjoerd Van Ginneken (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton 0:06:47
95 Sam Bewley (NZl) Orica-GreenEdge 0:07:30
96 Magnus Cort Nielsen (Den) Orica-GreenEdge
97 Alexander Edmonson (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge
DNF Daniele Bennati (Ita) Tinkoff Team
DNF Manuele Boaro (Ita) Tinkoff Team
DNF Maciej Bodnar (Pol) Tinkoff Team
DNF Adam Blythe (GBr) Tinkoff Team
DNF Nikolay Trusov (Rus) Tinkoff Team
DNF Jay Mccarthy (Aus) Tinkoff Team
DNF Oscar Gatto (Ita) Tinkoff Team
DNF Elia Viviani (Ita) Team Sky
DNF Alex Peters (GBr) Team Sky
DNF Greg Henderson (NZl) Lotto Soudal
DNF Stig Broeckx (Bel) Lotto Soudal
DNF Vladimir Isaychev (Rus) Team Katusha
DNF Michael Morkov (Den) Team Katusha
DNF Sven Erik Bystrøm (Nor) Team Katusha
DNF Guillaume Van Keirsbulck (Bel) Etixx - Quick-Step
DNF Sondre Holst Enger (Nor) IAM Cycling
DNF Roger Kluge (Ger) IAM Cycling
DNF Matteo Pelucchi (Ita) IAM Cycling
DNF Mickael Delage (Fra) FDJ
DNF Marc Sarreau (Fra) FDJ
DNF Matthieu Ladagnous (Fra) FDJ
DNF Daniel Hoelgaard (Nor) FDJ
DNF Johan Le Bon (Fra) FDJ
DNF Ignatas Konovalovas (Ltu) FDJ
DNF Christopher Juul Jensen (Den) Orica-GreenEdge
DNF Floris Gerfs (Ned) BMC Racing Team
DNF Nico Denz (Ger) AG2R La Mondiale
DNF Alexis Gougeard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
DNF Jesse Sergent (NZl) AG2R La Mondiale
DNF Bram Tankink (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo
DNF Robert Wagner (Ger) Team LottoNl-Jumbo
DNF Giacomo Nizzolo (Ita) Trek-Segafredo
DNF Marco Coledan (Ita) Trek-Segafredo
DNF Søren Kragh Andersen (Den) Team Giant-Alpecin
DNF Nikias Arndt (Ger) Team Giant-Alpecin
DNF Albert Timmer (Ned) Team Giant-Alpecin
DNF Filippo Pozzato (Ita) Southeast - Venezuela
DNF Manuel Belletti (Ita) Southeast - Venezuela
DNF Andrea Fedi (Ita) Southeast - Venezuela
DNF Mirko Tedeschi (Ita) Southeast - Venezuela
DNF Enrique Sanz (Spa) Southeast - Venezuela
DNF Shane Archbold (NZl) Bora-Argon 18
DNF Sam Bennett (Irl) Bora-Argon 18
DNF Zakkari Dempster (Aus) Bora-Argon 18
DNF Lukas Pöstlberger (Aut) Bora-Argon 18
DNF Michael Schwarzmann (Ger) Bora-Argon 18
DNF Rudiger Selig (Ger) Bora-Argon 18
DNF Roy Jans (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert
DNF Kenny De Haes (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert
DNF Tom Devriendt (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert
DNF Mark Mcnally (GBr) Wanty - Groupe Gobert
DNF Robin Stenuit (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert
DNF Frederik Veuchelen (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert
DNF Yauheni Hutarovich (Blr) Fortuneo - Vital Concept
DNF Franck Bonnamour (Fra) Fortuneo - Vital Concept
DNF Daniel Mclay (GBr) Fortuneo - Vital Concept
DNF Boris Vallee (Bel) Fortuneo - Vital Concept
DNF Steven Tronet (Fra) Fortuneo - Vital Concept
DNF Benoit Jarrier (Fra) Fortuneo - Vital Concept
DNF Vegard Breen (Nor) Fortuneo - Vital Concept
DNF Preben Van Hecke (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise
DNF Amaury Capiot (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise
DNF Maxime Farazijn (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise
DNF Kenneth Van Bilsen (Bel) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
DNF Borut Bozic (Slo) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
DNF Jerome Cousin (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
DNF Gert Joeaar (Est) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
DNF Jonas Ahlstrand (Swe) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
DNF Yohann Gene (Fra) Direct Energie
DNF Tony Hurel (Fra) Direct Energie
DNF Julien Morice (Fra) Direct Energie
DNF Iuri Filosi (Ita) Nippo - Vini Fantini
DNF Eduard Michael Grosu (Rom) Nippo - Vini Fantini
DNF Yuma Koishi (Jpn) Nippo - Vini Fantini
DNF Nicolas Marini (Ita) Nippo - Vini Fantini
DNF Riccardo Stacchiotti (Ita) Nippo - Vini Fantini
DNF Antonio Viola (Ita) Nippo - Vini Fantini
DNF Jesper Asselman (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton
DNF Wesley Kreder (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton
DNF André Looij (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton
DNF Brian Van Goethem (Ned) Roompot - Oranje Peloton
DNF Marcin Bialoblocki (Pol) ONE Pro Cycling
DNF Sebastian Lander (Den) ONE Pro Cycling
DNF Hayden Mccormick (NZl) ONE Pro Cycling
DNF Martin Mortensen (Den) ONE Pro Cycling
DNF Chris Opie (GBr) ONE Pro Cycling
DNF Samuel Williams (GBr) ONE Pro Cycling
DNF Steele Von Hoff (Aus) ONE Pro Cycling
DNF David Boucher (Fra) Crelan-Vastgoedservice Continental Team
DNF Yannick Eijssen (Bel) Crelan-Vastgoedservice Continental Team
DNF Rob Ruijgh (Ned) Crelan-Vastgoedservice Continental Team
DNF Frederique Robert (Bel) Crelan-Vastgoedservice Continental Team
DNF Alexander Geuens (Bel) Crelan-Vastgoedservice Continental Team
DNF Edwig Cammaerts (Bel) Team 3M
DNF Michael Vingerling (Ned) Team 3M
DNF Yoeri Havik (Ned) Team 3M
DNF Christophe Sleurs (Bel) Team 3M
DNF Jimmy Janssens (Bel) Team 3M
DNS Christian Knees (Ger) Team Sky
DNS Rick Zabel (Ger) BMC Racing Team
DNS Kenneth Van Rooy (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise
DNS Tim Declercq (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Baloise

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