By Brecht Decaluwé
In yesterday's finale of La Flèche Wallonne, Davitamon-Lotto rider Björn Leukemans tried to catch the favourites off guard, attacking immediately after being dropped then crawling his way back to the lead group with Liberty Seguros' Koldo Gil. In fact, the 28 year-old Belgian did manage to escape and was actually the first rider onto the Mur de Huy, but died a thousand deaths a few hundred metres into one of the deadliest climbs in world cycling.
Nevertheless, he was happy with his 36th place, just 1'15 back from winner Alejandro Valverde: "I felt a lot better than in the Amstel Gold Race," said Leukemans to Cyclingnews. "Now, after an effort, I could recuperate from it; the team doctor said that I only needed some extra sugars."
"I knew the attack wasn't going to lead to victory, but staying in the group wouldn't lead to victory either. The 'Mur' was a bit to hard to get a good result in the sprint uphill. At least I was in the picture... for some moments," he laughed. "Maybe somebody could've joined me, but the guys who could win definitely wouldn't [have] followed me."