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April 23/14 9:47 am - La Fleche Wallonne Men's report and results


Posted by Editoress on 04/23/14
 

Alejandro Valverde wins after a strategic attack on Mur de Huy

The Spaniard claims a second Fleche Wallonne beating Daniel Martin and Michal Kwiatkowski to the line. Since his last win in 2006, he had finished in the top 10 of the event on three occasions. Valverde made the best of his climbing abilities and the hard work of his Movistar squad throughout the day. A team that first did the necessary to catch the three escapees of the day, before helping their leader capture a fine win.

First fright early on
The 198 riders of the 78th edition of the Fleche Wallonne took off under a bright sun and clear skies from the city of Bastogne, hosting the start of the event for the very first time. Bastogne that the riders will visit again next Sunday during the 100th edition of Liège-Bastogne-Liège. The race started with a bang as several riders including title-holder Daniel Moreno (KAT) were caught in a crash after only 5kms. A fright and a potential blow for Katusha who had lost Joaquim Rodriguez last weekend on the Amstel Gold Race, already on a crash.

 

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Copyright A.S.O.

 

Three in command
The first serious move of the day occurred after 20kms when three men managed to break away from the pack. Ramunas Navardauskas (GRS) was the first to attack, taking with him Preben Van Heche (TSV) and Jonathan Clarke (UHC). While the pack wasn't too concerned by the front men, the escapees covered an impressive distance of 49.4kms during the first hour of racing and enjoyed a maximum lead of 8'45 at km 50. From then on riders from teams Katusha and BMC moved to the front of the pack and started chasing.

 

photo

Copyright A.S.O.

photo

Copyright A.S.O.

 

Chasing hard
At the top of the first of three climbs up the Mur de Huy, the gap had dropped down to 5'50. Men from Movistar and Lotto-Bellisol then joined the chase and the gap dropped seriously with just over 40kms to go. The first man to struggle and be dropped was Australian Clarke who was eventually caught by the pack with 38kms to go.

Vain attempts
Pierre Rolland (EUC) and Jan Bakelants (OPQ) were then the first of the top contenders to give it a go on a counter-attack going up the Côte d'Ahin, but they were immediately chased and caught. On the second climb up the Mur de Huy, it was Cyril Gautier's turn to try his luck. He managed to make it clear from the pack at the top while the escapees still enjoyed a 30” lead. But Gautier's attempt turned out to be vain.

Over for escapees
After an impressive effort, there wasn't much the front two riders could do against the chasing pack and the likes of Kolobnev (KAT) and Herrada (MOV) working hard for their leaders. They were finally caught with 12kms to go, after having spent 167kms in the lead.

No stopping Movistar
With 7kms to go, another Frenchman took off. Jeremy Roy indeed enjoyed a slim 10” advantage 5kms from the line but he too was gobbled up by a pack led by Katusha. Like on the previous years the decision would be made on the final climb up the Mur de Huy. After a first attempt by Romain Bardet in the first metres of the ascent, the favourites powered to the front with the likes of Vanendert and Kwitakowski leading the way. In the last 200m, Alejandro Valverde made his decisive effort and flew triumphantly to the line beating last year's winner of Liège-Bastogne-Liège Daniel Martin (GRS) and rising star Michal Kwiatkowski (OPQ).

 

photo

Copyright A.S.O.

 

Third win this season for Valverde
The Spaniard wins the event for the second time after his victory in 2006. Valverde adds a third success to his 2014 season, having already claimed the Tour of Murcia and the Tour of Andalusia. With Amstel Gold Race winner Pjhilippe Gilbert, all eyes will be on the soon to be 34-year-old Valverde who would love to celebrate his birthday, on Friday, with a victory on the 100th edition of Liège-Bastogne-Liège.

 

Results from today's La Flèche Wallonne in Belgium

 

Bastogne to Huy, 199 km
1 Alejandro Valverde (Movistar Team) 4:36:45
2 Daniel Martin (Garmin - Sharp) at 0:03
3 Michal Kwiatkowski (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) 0:04
4 Bauke Mollema (Belkin Pro Cycling) s.t.
5 Tom Jelte Slagter (Garmin - Sharp) 0:06
6 Jelle Vanendert (Lotto-Belisol) s.t.
7 Michael Albasini (Orica GreenEDGE) 0:08
8 Roman Kreuziger (Tinkoff-Saxo) s.t.
9 Daniel Moreno Fernandez (Team Katusha) 0:11
10 Philippe Gilbert (BMC Racing Team) 0:15
11 Julian Arredondo (Trek Factory Racing) 0:17
12 Wouter Poels (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) 0:19
13 Paul Martens (Belkin Pro Cycling) 0:23
14 Vincenzo Nibali (Astana Pro Team) 0:24
15 Mathias Frank (IAM Cycling) 0:26
16 Simon Clarke (Orica GreenEDGE) 0:28
17 Diego Ulissi (Lampre - Merida)  
18 Rudy Molard (Cofidis, Solutions Credits)  
19 Jakob Fuglsang (Astana Pro Team)  
20 Jurgen van Den Broeck (Lotto-Belisol)  
21 Tom Dumoulin (Team Giant-Shimano) all s.t.
22 Gorka Izaguirre Insausti (Movistar Team) 0:32
23 Warren Barguil (Team Giant-Shimano) 0:37
24 Sébastien Reichenbach (IAM Cycling) 0:40
25 Daan Olivier (Team Giant-Shimano) 0:43
26 Lars-Peter Nordhaug (Belkin Pro Cycling) 0:45
27 Ivan Santaromita (Orica GreenEDGE) 0:48
28 Thomas Sprengers (Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise) 0:51
29 Thomas Degand (Wanty - Groupe Gobert) 0:54
30 Laurens Ten Dam (Belkin Pro Cycling)  
31 Cyril Gautier (Team Europcar)  
32 Jean Marc Marino (Cannondale)  
33 Gianpaolo Caruso (Team Katusha)  
34 Samuel Sanchez (BMC Racing Team) all s.t.
35 Romain Bardet (AG2R La Mondiale) 0:58
36 Carlos Betancur Gomez (AG2R La Mondiale) 1:00
37 Chris Anker Sorensen (Tinkoff-Saxo) 1:03
38 Alex Howes (Garmin - Sharp) 1:04
39 Mikael Cherel (AG2R La Mondiale) s.t.
40 Jérôme Coppel (Cofidis, Solutions Credits) 1:12
41 Jesus Herrada Lopez (Movistar Team) 1:14
42 Thomas Lövkvist (IAM Cycling) 1:17
43 Jan Bakelants (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) s.t.
44 Benoît Vaugrenard (FDJ.fr) 1:23
45 Ben Hermans (BMC Racing Team) 1:25
46 Jérémy Roy (FDJ.fr)  
47 Cameron Meyer (Orica GreenEDGE) both s.t.
48 Alexandr Kolobnev (Team Katusha) 1:30
49 Eduard Vorganov (Team Katusha) s.t.
50 Bart De Clercq (Lotto-Belisol) 1:32
51 Romain Sicard (Team Europcar) 1:40
52 John Gadret (Movistar Team) s.t.
53 Rui Alberto Faria Da Costa (Lampre - Merida) 1:44
54 Gianluca Brambilla (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) 1:45
55 Ben Gastauer (AG2R La Mondiale) 1:51
56 Frank Schleck (Trek Factory Racing)  
57 Marco Marcato (Cannondale) both s.t.
58 Nathan Haas (Garmin - Sharp) 1:54
59 Andres Torres Agudelo (Colombia) 1:56
60 Tony Gallopin (Lotto-Belisol) 1:57
61 Tim Wellens (Lotto-Belisol) 2:02
62 Pieter Serry (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) 2:08
63 Pierre Rolland (Team Europcar) 2:13
64 Lieuwe Westra (Astana Pro Team) 2:30
65 Sébastien Minard (AG2R La Mondiale) 3:01
66 Matteo Montaguti (AG2R La Mondiale) s.t.
67 Amaël Moinard (BMC Racing Team) 3:54
68 Eliot Lietaer (Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise) 4:01
69 Damiano Cunego (Lampre - Merida) 4:04
70 Joaquim Rodriguez (Team Katusha) 4:06
71 Jon Izaguirre Insausti (Movistar Team) 4:12
72 Pieter Weening (Orica GreenEDGE) 4:14
73 Angel Vicioso (Team Katusha) 4:17
74 Merhawi Kudus Ghebremedhin (MTN-Qhubeka) 5:02
75 Guillaume Levarlet (Cofidis, Solutions Credits) 5:12
76 Francis De Greef (Wanty - Groupe Gobert)  
77 Fabian Wegmann (Garmin - Sharp)  
78 Simon Yates (Orica GreenEDGE)  
79 Andriy Grivko (Astana Pro Team)  
80 Victor Campenaerts (Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise)  
81 Natnael Berhane (Team Europcar)  
82 Luis Angel Mate Mardones (Cofidis, Solutions Credits)  
83 Laurent Pichon (FDJ.fr)  
84 Reto Hollenstein (IAM Cycling)  
85 Ramunas Navardauskas (Garmin - Sharp)  
86 John Darwin Atapuma (BMC Racing Team)  
87 Robinson Eduardo Chalapud (Colombia)  
88 Pieter Jacobs (Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise)  
89 Maxim Iglinskiy (Astana Pro Team)  
90 Stef Clement (Belkin Pro Cycling)  
91 Romain Zingle (Cofidis, Solutions Credits)  
92 Edwin Alcibiades Avila (Colombia) all s.t.
93 Serge Pauwels (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) 5:19
94 Enrico Gasparotto (Astana Pro Team) 5:23
95 Karsten Kroon (Tinkoff-Saxo)  
96 Linus Gerdemann (MTN-Qhubeka)  
97 Adam Yates (Orica GreenEDGE)  
98 Alberto Bettiol (Cannondale)  
99 Davide Villella (Cannondale)  
100 Carlos Verona (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) all s.t.
101 Marcel Wyss (IAM Cycling) 5:28
102 Tanel Kangert (Astana Pro Team) 5:30
103 Thierry Hupond (Team Giant-Shimano) 5:32
104 Thomas Damuseau (Team Giant-Shimano)  
105 Rein Taaramae (Cofidis, Solutions Credits)  
106 Dennis Vanendert (Lotto-Belisol)  
107 Jacobus Venter (MTN-Qhubeka) all s.t.
108 Jesper Hansen (Tinkoff-Saxo) 5:35
109 Rory Sutherland (Tinkoff-Saxo)  
110 Alberto Losada (Team Katusha)  
111 Perrig Quemeneur (Team Europcar)  
112 Matthew Busche (Trek Factory Racing) all s.t.
113 Rafael Valls Ferri (Lampre - Merida) 5:42
114 Kristijan Durasek (Lampre - Merida)  
115 Matteo Bono (Lampre - Merida) both s.t.
116 Jonathan Hivert (Belkin Pro Cycling) 5:47
117 Jérôme Baugnies (Wanty - Groupe Gobert) s.t.
118 Kevin Seeldrayers (Wanty - Groupe Gobert) 5:49
119 Michal Golas (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) s.t.
120 Daniele Ratto (Cannondale) 5:51
121 Benat Intxausti (Movistar Team) 5:59
122 Marcus Burghardt (BMC Racing Team) 6:04
123 Preben van Hecke (Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise) 6:05
124 Anthony Roux (FDJ.fr) 6:06
125 Alessandro De Marchi (Cannondale) s.t.
126 David Lopez Garcia (Team Sky) 6:18
127 Julien Simon (Cofidis, Solutions Credits) 7:52
128 Edward Beltran Suarez (Tinkoff-Saxo) 7:52
129 Alessandro Bazzana (Unitedhealthcare) 9:21
130 Gustav Larsson (IAM Cycling)  
131 Guillaume Bonnafond (AG2R La Mondiale)  
132 Jay Robert Thomson (MTN-Qhubeka)  
133 Dennis van Niekerk (MTN-Qhubeka)  
134 Jonathan Fumeaux (IAM Cycling)  
135 Danny Pate (Team Sky)  
136 Jussi Veikkanen (FDJ.fr)  
137 Matej Mohoric (Cannondale) all s.t.
138 Mattia Cattaneo (Lampre - Merida) 9:27
139 Lucas Euser (Unitedhealthcare)  
140 Michel Koch (Cannondale) both s.t.
141 Pieter van Speybrouck (Topsport Vlaanderen-Baloise) 9:35
142 Davide Frattini (Unitedhealthcare) 10:07
143 Bob Jungels (Trek Factory Racing)  
144 David Tanner (Belkin Pro Cycling) both s.t.
145 Fabio Felline (Trek Factory Racing) 10:22
DNF Ryder Hesjedal (Garmin-Sharp)
DNF Christian Meier (Orica GreenEDGE

 

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