Classic Brugge-De Panne men: Jasper Philipsen wins wet and wild race
Belgian sprinter forced the key split and took the sprint win ahead of Jumbo-Visma fast man Olav Kooij.
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Jasper Philipsen (Alpecin-Deceuninck) took victory in a wet and windy edition of the Classic Brugge-De Panne.
In what was far from a simple sprint race, Philipsen beat Olav Kooij (Jumbo-Visma) in a drag race to the line with Yves Lampaert (Soudal Quick-Step) rounding out the podium ahead of Fredrik Frison (Lotto-Dstny).
Philipsen had been instrumental in making the race-winning move, driving a split in the lead group with about 16 kilometers remaining. The advantage was never very big, but it was sufficient to keep the chasers at bay.
With his team’s sprinter Fabio Jakobsen behind, Lampaert was left to have a go himself in the rush for the line and he was the first to blink. Philipsen latched onto his wheel and quickly passed his compatriot to take the win, while Kooij was unable to overhaul the Alpecin-Deceuninck rider.
“We had a really strong team and we were really paying attention and we were always in the front. We can be really proud of this, we rode a good race,” Philipsen said afterward. “I knew this morning, it wasn’t going to be a normal sprint but in the end, it was a really good group with all of the sprinters. There were a lot of fast guys in there but I felt really good.”
The quartet had attacked from an already vastly reduced bunch of around 20 riders that had broken free of the pack in crosswinds that hammered the race earlier in the day. The move had nearly all of the top sprinters in it with Jokobsen, Philipsen, Kooij, Pascal Ackermann, Arnaud Démare, and Dylan Groenewegen all there.
With four riders in the break, Soudal Quick-Step worked to prevent it from being caught. However, they were caught on the backfoot when Philipsen caused the final key split and Jakobsen was left behind as Lampaert was the only member of the team to follow the Belgian.
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