A close second place for D’hoore in the women’s Gent-Wevelgem

Sun 25 Mar 2018

Driedaasge de Panne winner Jolien D’hoore sprinted to a close second place today in the fifth round of the women’s WorldTour series Gent-Wevelgem.

After numerous splits all day, Mitchelton-SCOTT had numbers in the final front group and worked to lead out the Belgian champion for the sprint finish in Wevelgem. D’hoore launched out of the wheels and led all the way to the line, but in the final moments Marta Bastianelli (Ale-Cipollini) lunged ahead and claim the race victory.

The Kemmelberg split

In the first 80kilometres of the race, no breakaway’s were able to form, instead it was a race of attrition with the peloton splitting into groups after the first ascent of the Kemmelberg and Monteberg.

On the second ascent of the Kemmelberg climb, the race fragmented significantly and 18riders were able to from the front group. Annemiek van Vleuten was present for Mitchelton-SCOTT but with Jolien D’hoore in the second group, teammates Gracie Elvin and Sarah Roy began to chase hard to try and bridge across to the leaders.

Final front group

Finally the groups rejoined with 30kilometres to go on the flat roads towards Wevelgem. A few riders took their chances but were unable to stay away until finally the bunch split again leaving 36riders in the front.

Jess Allen and Elvin were present along side D'hoore in the front and the pair started the lead out with one and a half kilometres to go with D’hoore second wheel and as the sprint opened up. It looked like the victory was sealed, however in the final metres, Bastianelli began to come back towards D’hoore and was able to launch across the line to steal the race win.

Jolien D’hoore - 2nd place

"The team was strong the whole day. Annemiek was in the first group going over the climbs and after the hill zone I was still up there when a lot of the sprinters were dropped but everything came back together. I didn't feel so great in the beginning of the race but I got better towards the end."

"It was hard to control in the final, but Gracie was a big help and unfortunately I got only second place. The lead out was maybe a bit early, but we had to keep the pace high so there weren't too many attacks."

Gent-Wevelgem results:

1. Marta Bastianelli (Ale-Cipollini) 3:38:47
2. Jolien D’hoore ((Mitchelton-SCOTT) ST
3. Lisa Klein (Canyon-SRAM) ST

Photo courtesy of Getty Images