Jumbo-Visma make it a double as Vos wins Gent-Wevelgem in frantic sprint finish

Marianne Vos (Jumbo-Visma) took the crown in the women's Gent-Wevelgem after closing the gap on Lotte Kopecky (Liv Racing) and Lisa Brennauer (Ceratizit-WNT) in the final sprint.

Marianne Vos

Marianne Vos wins the 2021 Women's Gent-Wevelgem. Source: Velo

The race seemed destined for another winner after an attack from Elisa Longo Borghini (Trek-Segafredo) and Soraya Paladin (Liv Racing) saw them break away from the lead group in the crosswinds after Ypres, but they were run down less than 500 metres from the finish.

Vos' victory caps a perfect performance from Jumbo-Visma, as rider Wout Van Aert took out the Men's event to make it two from two in Gent-Wevelgem.

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With breakaway groups forming throughout the seven climbs along the 143 km route, Trek-Segafredo seized their opportunity on the way into Wevelgem, as riders Ellen Van Dijk, Longo Borghini and Lizzie Deignan launched to the front through a cross-tailwind joined by Paladin, Amy Pieters and Christine Majerus (both Team SD Worx) and Elisa Balsamo and Vittoria Guazzini (both Valcar-Travel and Service).

Longo Borghini began her attack with 20km left, carving out a sizeable gap as only Paladin was able to follow. Six kilometres later the pair had increased the gap to 24 seconds in front of a growing chasing group of 30-40 riders.

Despite a spirited effort, Longo Borghini and Paladin were caught in the final kilometre to set up a sprint finish, with Vos going early with 300 metres left to clinch the victory.

"When you then look back and see your teammates cheering as they cross the line, it is fantastic," Vos said post-race.

"It was a hard, nervous race, always fighting for position, and in the final the two riders in front who had a nice gap. When your teammates work so hard, you really want to finish it off, but it was an elite group left for the sprint."

"I knew that it would not be easy. The team had confidence in me, and I knew that if I launched the sprint first, I had a chance, so I tried to stay as calm as possible and jump first."

Aussie Sarah Roy (BikeExchange) took eighth place in the final standings, with teammate Grace Brown coming in twenty-second.  

Roy admitted her endurance wasn't where she hoped it would be in the race, but enjoyed the experience nonetheless alongside her teammates.

“I think our team ride today was a huge step forward, we are a new group and today was really awesome, the whole process of everything," Roy said.

"But unfortunately, I didn’t have the legs I was hoping for, I’ve tried to be really positive since my crash the other day into the swamp water, I’ve pulled up a bit more sore than I’d hoped.

"So I didn’t have the legs today, but I felt really well supported by all the girls and it was really fun to do a lead out with Grace into the final, that’s the first time we’ve ever done that together and she did an amazing job.”


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3 min read
Published 29 March 2021 at 10:00am
By SBS Cycling Central
Source: SBS