CyclingQuotes.com uses cookies for statistics and targeting ads. This information is shared with third parties.
ACCEPT COOKIES » MORE INFO »

Every day we bring you more pro-cycling news

Gilbert emerges as the strongest in the uphill sprint to La Gileppe in the Ardennes and puts 3 seconds into Wellens and 6 into Martens to take both the stage win and the yellow jersey

Photo: Sirotti

BMC RACING TEAM

TEAM PROFILE
|
NEWS

PAUL MARTENS

RIDER PROFILE
|
NEWS

PHILIPPE GILBERT

RIDER PROFILE
|
NEWS

STER ZLM TOUR

RACE PROFILE
|
NEWS

TIM WELLENS

RIDER PROFILE
|
NEWS
21.06.2014 @ 18:14 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Philippe Gilbert (BMC) put himself in a fantastic position to win the Ster ZLM Toer for the third time in his career when he won today’s queen stage in his preferred terrain in the Belgian Ardennes. Having used his team to animate the stage all day, he was clearly the strongest in the uphill sprint in La Gileppe, putting 3 seconds into Tim Wellens (Lotto Belisol) and 6 seconds into Paul Martens (Belkin) to take the leader’s jersey off Marcel Kittel’s shoulders.

 

Three days ago Philippe Gilbert proved that he is in excellent condition ahead of the Belgian championships when he won the prologue in the Ster ZLM Toer. When he lost the leader’s jersey to Marcel Kittel (Giant-Shimano) one day later, he claimed to be unconcerned as he expected to take it back in today’s queen stage in the Belgian Ardennes.

 

Gilbert lived up to his promises as he was in a class of his own when it all came down to an uphill sprint in La Gileppe at the end of a hard ride on his Wallonian home soil. All day his BMC team had tried to make things as hard as possible on the many climbs that included well-known ascents like Cote de la Redoute and Col du Rosier and later in the stage they had sent Ben Herman off in an attack to force the others on the defensive.

 

The plan was always to set Gilbert up for the uphill sprint which suited him perfectly and when a late 4-rider break had been brought back, it turned out just as BMC had planned. Gilbert paid back his teammates for their hard work by launching one of his trademark accelerations and no one could keep his wheel.

 

His young compatriot Tim Wellens got closest but at the line, the Lotto rider had lost 3 seconds. 3 second further adrift, Paul Martens took third while Gianni Meersman (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) led a small group to the finish with a time loss of 10 seconds.

 

The stage was held on a 186.7km route from Hotel Verviers to La Gileppe and was a very hilly run through the Ardennes. The first part contained several climbs, including the Col du Rosier and the Cote de la Redoute, and it all came to an end with two laps of a hard finishing circuit that included a short climb to the line.

 

Early in the stage, Huub Dijn (De Rijke), Wout van Aert (Vastgoedservice), Michael Vanthourenhout (Sunweb) and Quinten Hermans (Telenet) escaped and they were joined by Nicola Testi (Androni), Timo Roosen (Rabobank) and Dries Hollanders (Metec) to form a 7-rider front group. Ronan van Zandbeek (De Rijke) also tried to make it across but never made the junction.

 

While Hollanders picked up a lot of KOM points and Roosen sprint points, the gap went up to 3.25 before BMC took over the pace-setting. On the Col de Rosier, they dropped the hammer and at the top, the advantage was only 1.20.

 

BMC again slowed down a bit and at the bottom of the Redoute, the advantage was again 2.35. This time BMC used a different tactic as they launched Herman off in an attack and after a long chase he made the junction to make it 8 riders in the break.

 

OPQS had taken control of the peloton that was now 2.25 behind but as they approached the next climb, they brought it down to 1.30. On the slopes, the front group exploded and at the top, only van Aert, Hermans, Hermans and Vanthourenhout were still left.

 

The peloton had split to pieces and race leader Marcel Kittel had come into difficult on the ascent. Behind  the leaders, a group with Martens, Meersman, Petr Vakoc, Gilbert, Samuel Sanchez, Wellens, Testi, Bjorn Leukemans, Rob Ruijgh, Roosen and Hollanders had formed but that group was caught a little later.

 

Kittel was now back in contention and with 35km to go, the four leaders were caught. This was the signal for Stijn Steels (Topsport) to launch an attack and he managed to build a 35-second advantage. Lars Bak (Lotto Belisol), Julien Vermote (OPQS) and Jarno Gmelich Meijling (Metec) bridged the gap and now it was a fierce pursuit between the peloton – led by BMC – and the front quartet.

 

They managed to build a 45-second advantage but as BMC upped the pace, they started to lose ground. With the gap down to 25 seconds, Steels fell off the pace while Kittel got dropped from the peloton. In the end, BMC managed to bring it back together for a sprint where Gilbert emerged as the strongest.

 

Gilbert now takes a 12-second advantage over Wellens into tomorrow’s final stage which is almost completely flat and should suit the sprinters. Only disaster can prevent Gilbert from winning the Ster ZLM Toer for the third time in his career.

RELATED NEWS:

Teuns looking to help the team in 2015 »

Zabel satisfied after debut season »

Van Avermaet: I was the most consistent »

Van Avermaet wins Kristallen Fiets »

Museeuw: There is no successor to Boonen and Gilbert »

MORE NEWS:

VIEW SELECTED

De Ketele: There were no gifts 24.11.2014 @ 01:09De Buyst: I cannot believe that I have won two years in... 24.11.2014 @ 01:00Meeusen: Finally another podium 24.11.2014 @ 00:54Pauwels: My goals are the overall World Cup and Superpr... 24.11.2014 @ 00:47Van der Haar: Pauwels was the strongest 23.11.2014 @ 19:55Cavendish and Keisse disappointed after Ghent Six-Days 23.11.2014 @ 19:47De Buyst and De Ketele win Six-Days of Ghent 23.11.2014 @ 18:21Pauwels triumphs on F1 track in Spa-Francorchamps 23.11.2014 @ 16:19Bora owner has big plans for team 23.11.2014 @ 16:00Lack of Tenerife testing analysed by experts 23.11.2014 @ 15:15Prudhomme assesses the state of German cycling 23.11.2014 @ 14:58Gastauer celebrates excellent breakthrough season 23.11.2014 @ 14:38Ulissi to find out fate in December 23.11.2014 @ 14:30Henderson: "This year I've been the king of c... 23.11.2014 @ 14:28Ghent organizer pleased with 2014 race 23.11.2014 @ 14:25Cavendish boosting Six-Day racing's profile 23.11.2014 @ 13:37Cunego: This is a big opportunity 23.11.2014 @ 13:28Movistar with big expectations for Lobato 23.11.2014 @ 13:09Keisse and Cavendish defend lead in Ghent 23.11.2014 @ 12:48Colombia end team gathering in Bogota 23.11.2014 @ 09:00Heart problems force Sprick into retirement 23.11.2014 @ 08:30Bos hopes to hit the ground running in 2015 23.11.2014 @ 08:00Riders regret Van Hummel's retirement 23.11.2014 @ 07:30Planckaert to step down from Topsport manager position 23.11.2014 @ 07:00Pauwels: I wouldn't have been able to do that at 2... 23.11.2014 @ 00:08Van der Poel: Van Aert deserved to win the race 22.11.2014 @ 23:59Van Aert dedicates Koksijde win to Albert 22.11.2014 @ 23:49UCI changes set to be put in place for 2017 22.11.2014 @ 19:53Van der Haar to start tomorrow in Francorchamps 22.11.2014 @ 16:41Van Aert crushes the opposition in the Koksijde sand 22.11.2014 @ 16:23Nibali: Doping is unbelievably stupid 22.11.2014 @ 16:17Belgian journalist covers 42km in Hour Record Attempt 22.11.2014 @ 14:30Shane Sutton: Cav and Swift should target Rio omnium 22.11.2014 @ 14:05Talented Austrian wants to show that he belongs to the... 22.11.2014 @ 14:00Savio explains decision not to extend with Van Hummel 22.11.2014 @ 13:40Ciolek gunning for Tour return 22.11.2014 @ 13:30Nuyens in negotiations with two teams 22.11.2014 @ 13:30Dayer Quintana: I have proved that I deserve my spot 22.11.2014 @ 13:23Cookson presents reform plans to race organizers 22.11.2014 @ 13:09Quintana: I am grateful for Valverde's support 22.11.2014 @ 13:00Hinault slammed for Armstrong comments 22.11.2014 @ 12:54Jose Ivan Gutierrez retires 22.11.2014 @ 12:52Cavendish and Keisse take the lead in Ghent 22.11.2014 @ 12:38Sergey Lagutin: It was difficult for me to leave Rusvelo 22.11.2014 @ 11:21Stuyven: I am not yet interested in the Tour de France 22.11.2014 @ 10:32Boem targets more wins in 2015 22.11.2014 @ 08:50Conti targets Il Lombardia in the future 22.11.2014 @ 08:34Teuns looking to help the team in 2015 22.11.2014 @ 07:40Zeeman: Dutch companies are interested in cycling again 22.11.2014 @ 06:52Valverde: We are not like Froome and Wiggins 21.11.2014 @ 19:12Quintana and Valverde target Tour-Vuelta double 21.11.2014 @ 18:44Evans leads Australian Tour de France team of the century 21.11.2014 @ 16:39Simon Gerrans takes Best Australian Cyclist Award 21.11.2014 @ 16:34Van Hummel ends career 21.11.2014 @ 15:23Riis has high expectations for Sagan in 2015 21.11.2014 @ 14:49

Herman SPIJKERMAN
26 years | today
Daan OLIVIER
22 years | today
Adrian Barcelo ARAGON
26 years | today
Walt De WINTER
26 years | today
Jorge Camilo CASTIBLANCO CUBIDES
26 years | today
ALL BIRTHDAYS

© CyclingQuotes.com 2013