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Alberto Bettiol triumphs

“I still don’t believe it,” said the EF Education First rider after his first-ever victory. The 25-year-old launched a perfectly timed solo attack on the Oude Kwaremont and managed to hold off all the big names till the very end.

“I don’t know how I did it. I felt really good on the Kwaremont and Andreas (Klier) from the car said: ‘If you can, just go.’ I closed my eyes and went. I looked down at the top and had a really good gap. They said ‘keep pushing, keep pushing.’ On the Paterberg I don’t think I lost a lot and then it was the longest 14km of my life.”

Greg van Avermaet (CCC Team) pushed for a while, closing the gap, but ultimately gave up because all the fast guys were just hanging on his wheel, not helping with the work.

“For me it was the case, if I went full, I’d bring a lot of fast guys with me who were not pulling for the whole day,” the Belgian said. “It was not my job to take them to the line and let them win Flanders. That was not the answer.”

Tour of Flanders results

1. Alberto Bettiol (EF Education First) 6:18:49
2. Kasper Asgreen (Deceuninck – Quick-Step) + 14 s
3. Alexander Kristoff (UAE Team Emirates) + 17 s
4. Mathieu van der Poel (Corendon-Circus)
5. Nils Politt (Katusha-Alpecin)
6. Michael Matthews (Sunweb)
7. Oliver Naesen (Ag2r La Mondiale)
8. Alejandro Valverde (Movistar)
9. Tiesj Benoot (Lotto-Soudal)
10. Greg Van Avermaet (CCC Team)

Missed the start of the Flanders, Adam?

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Oh, the moustache man

The future

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