72nd Gent-Wevelgem - 2010 Results & Photos
Forget March Madness the Belgian Classics are ringing the bell in Deinze for
Spring and Bernard Eisel lit up the line for glory with room to spare...
HTC/Columbia's sprinter Bernard Eisel won the 219 kilometer Spring
semi-classic out of a sprint of six survivors of a break of around ten riders
who escaped with 45 km to go. Eisel the first Austrian to stamp the race with
authority swept by George Hincapie who started the sprint first coming around
Belgians Sep Vanmarcke (Topsport-Vlaanderen) and Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto).
Eisel dominates the finish for his finest victory. Photo © 2010 Fotoreporter
BMC's George Hincapie held on to take 4th place bettering his performance of
2006 in the race when he finished 5th with Eisel on his wheel at sixth. Daniel
Oss (Liquigas) filled out the top 5 with Omega Pharma/Lotto's Jurgen Roelandts
the final member of the lead group in at sixth.
Astana's Maxim Iglinsky and Saxo Bank's Matti Breschel who were dropped from
the escape finished at round a minute back out sprinting the first chase group;
with Tyler Farrar (Garmin/Transitions) and Luca Paolini (Acqua & Sapone) filling
out the top ten in the sprint with the first chase group of 8.
The rest of the field finished in groups first at 3:14, 5 minutes,
11:46 and finally a large group at over 22 minutes.
After race comments from Bernhard Eisel...
HTC-Columbia's Bernhard Eisel says he was surprised but delighted that he could
take his biggest career win in the Ghent-Wevelgem Classic.
"If I'm honest, I wasn't expecting too much from here, and I think quite a
few people were surprised by this result, but everything fell into place for me
to win even before the race happened," Eisel said.
"We took the right decision to check out the new Ghent-Wevelgem climbs
beforehand and not participate in the E-3 Harelbeke Classic immediately before
"When we took part in this race we were rested and in good shape, knew what
was coming up and we were ready to go. I felt in good form here, but my
teammates really helped put me in a great position for the win. Matt Goss and
Hayden Roulston are two names I'd like to mention but everybody did a great
Eisel said there was no doubt this was the high point of his career so far -
but he will be looking for more big results this spring. "Winning stages in the
Tour of Switzerland was good, and leading there was something very special, too.
But this is Ghent-Wevelgem. It's a major Classic and it's always been one of my
biggest dreams to take a race like this. And after this, who knows what could
happen in the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix?"
The race got underway with 194 riders signing in today in Deinze for the 219
km test to Wevelgem for a day in the wind. A group of 4 animated the first part
of the race escaping after 18 kilometers. The quartet,
eert Steurs (Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator), Angel Madrazo (Caisse d'Epargne),
Tom Van den Haute (Landbouwkrediet) and Matthe Pronk (Vacansoleil Pro)
opened a gap that rose to over three minutes but on the first climb
of the Kemmelberg. the four were caught.
A full on attack by the green & blu crew of Liquigas split the peloton
leading to formation of a break with the key move coming on the Kemmelberg with
45 km to go with Maxim Iglinsky (Astana) attacked out of the lead group and was
joined by Daniel Oss (Liquigas) went after him and caught the Astana rider.
The group eventually included favorites: George Hincapie (BMC), Oscar Freire
(Rabobank), Matti Breschel (Saxo Bank) and Bernard Eisel (HTC), Philippe Gilbert
(Omega Pharma-Lotto). Behind a chase of 4 riders followed at 30 seconds.
With 12 km to go the group 9 riders increased the pace dropping Aleksandr
Kuschynski (Liguigas), Maxim Iglinsky (Astana) and Spaniard Oscar Freire were
dropped leaving six in the lead group.
Jürgen Roelandts opened the hostilities attacking at 3 km to go but had
little luck losing the group with a kilometer to go Hincapie started his sprint
from afar; but it was HTC's Austrian sprinter Bernhard Eisel countered the move
and quickly caught and passed the American to win by two bike lengths.
Astana's Maxim Iglinsky fiinshes alone in 7th place. Photo © 2010 Fotoreporter
HTC-Columbia's Bernhard Eisel blasted to victory in the Ghent-Wevelgem
Classic on Sunday, outpowering five riders in a small group sprint. Eisel took
off with the other breakaways before the usually decisive Kemmelberg climb. The
Austrian then outsprinted them at the finish in Wevelgem for HTC-Columbia's
second straight victory in one of Belgium's biggest Classics and top ProTour
"Bernie won it by two bike lengths," said HTC-Columbia
sports director Tristan
Hoffman. "The other guys tried everything they could to get rid of Bernie
because they knew he would be the fastest if it came down to a sprint, but it
just wasn't possible. HTC-Columbia had been on the front all day. Bernie and
Marcel [Sieberg] and Matt [Goss] were all working away and keeping everything
under control. There were some new climbs before the Kemmel, which we'd checked
out and ridden over on the Friday before the race, and that was where it all
split apart. There were groups everywhere but Bernie stayed calm, got into the
right break and then played it perfectly at the finish."
Eisel wins going away with two bike lengths. Photo © 2010 Fotoreporter
For HTC-Columbia men's team, Eisel's win is the fourteenth victory of the 2010
season. Eisel will now go on to race in two more top northern Classics, the Tour
of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix.
George Hincapie scored his best finish at a Classic since 2008 with fourth place
Sunday at Gent-Wevelgem. The U.S. national road champion led out the six-man
sprint that was won by Bernhard Eisel (Team HTC-Columbia).
Hincapie Pleased With Result
Hincapie had not placed in the top five in a one-day classic since running fifth
at Ronde van Vlaanderen in 2008. The 11-time Tour de France veteran said he was
trying to surprise Eisel and Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) when he
launched his sprint with 300 meters to go. “In hindsight, if I had waited, I
would have been for sure in the first three, but I would not have been able to
beat Eisel,” Hincapie said. “I’m pleased. I was very focused and concentrated
all day. The team really helped me out.”
A Hard Race
Hincapie was among a group of 10 who crested the Kemmelberg, the last of 16
major climbs of the 219 km race, with a 30-second lead over a small group of
chasers. That group dwindled to six in a race over a new course that was deemed
harder than previous editions.
“If you look at most of the top 20, there were very few guys who raced
yesterday (E3 Prijs Vlaanderen-Harelbeke) and today who did well,” BMC Racing
Team Assistant Director Michael Sayers said.
“Probably Matti Breschel was one of the strongest in that group, but he flatted
with 17 kilometers to go.”
MILRAM allrounder Christian Knees made his mark as best German rider in the
Belgian Classic Gent-Wevelgem (UCI ProTour). He put in a very combative
performance, bringing his four-rider chase group back into the race, and
finished eleventh overall. The winner after 219 kilometers from near Gent
to Wevelgem was
„Christian Knees rode a classy race,“ said Ralf Grabsch, Team MILRAM's
Directeur Sportif. :On the Kemmelberg he formed the chase group at exactly the
right moment. As strong as he rode today, he deserved to be rewarded with a top
ten finish. But that didn't work out, which is really too bad.“
There was a bad moment for Team MILRAM early in the race, as Peter
Wrolich was involved in a crash. Despite light injuries to his mouth, he pulled
himself together and kept on riding. "We are in Belgium, you simply have
to be able to bear more, and that is exactly what Paco is doing," was how
Directeur Sportif Ralf Grabsch praised the
Philippe Gilbert Photo © 2010 Fotoreporter
72nd Gent Wevelgem
219 km - 5:17:12 - 39.723 km/h
1 Aut Eisel Bernhard Thr Team Htc - Columbia
2 Bel Vanmarcke Sep Tsv Topsport/Vlaanderen/Mercator0:00
3 17 Bel Gilbert Philippe Olo Omega Pharma-Lotto 0:00
4 193 Usa1 Hincapie George Bmc Bmc Racing Team 0:00
5 105 Ita Oss Daniel Liq Liquigas-Doimo 0:00:02
6 16 Bel Roelandts Jurgen Olo Omega Pharma-Lotto 00:07
7 46 Kaz Iglinsky Maxim Ast Astana 0:00:51
8 171 Den Breschel Matti Sax Team Saxo Bank 1:01
9 133 Usa Farrar Tyler Grm Garmin - Transitions 1:01
10 187 Ita Paolini Luca Asa Acqua & Sapone 1:01
11 155 Ger Knees Christian Mrm Team Milram 0:01:01
12 113 Esp Freire Gomez Oscar Rab Rabobank 0:01:01
13 104 Blr Kuschynski Aleksandr Liq Liquigas-Doimo 0:01:01
14 173 Aus Cooke Baden Sax Team Saxo Bank 0:01:08
72nd Gent -
Wevelgem Full Results and Photos