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Verbeke becomes first Belgian winner of Flanders

Richard Moore

Lotto rider takes emotional win ahead of bunch

Grace Verbeke (Lotto Ladies Team) was overjoyed to win the 2010 Ronde van Vlaanderen

Grace Verbeke (Lotto Ladies Team) was overjoyed to win the 2010 Ronde van Vlaanderen

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Grace Verbeke (Lotto Ladies Team) continued her good run of form with the biggest win of her career in Sunday’s women’s Tour of Flanders. The Belgian was one of the main aggressors, attacking on the fourth of nine climbs and then dropping her breakaway companion, Adrie Visser (HTC-Columbia), on the final climb of the Bosberg, with 12 of the 120km remaining, to score a popular solo win in Ninove.

The race was doubly significant for 25-year old Verbeke, being the biggest win of her career and also the first home win in the seventh edition of the women’s race. Her tactics were strongly influenced by the conditions, she explained at the finish.

“On the Molenberg [the fourth climb, after 74km] I forced it, and went hard,” said Verbeke. “It was not the plan - I wanted to go on the Muur [-Kapelmuur, the eighth and penultimate climb, 16km from the finish] but it was very muddy and very tricky, so I just wanted to be first up. I forced it and when I looked back I had a nice gap, which was a surprise.

“On the Muur the atmosphere was fantastic,” continued Verbeke. “Everyone was chanting my name, and I didn’t even feel myself pedalling - I couldn’t feel my legs, it was as though I was being pushed. When I got away on my own I felt I had the legs to stay away.

“I was very strong today. It’s a race I worked very hard for so I was in good shape. It means so much to me, in the first place because I’m a Belgian girl in a Belgian race. This is Flanders, so it’s very big for me and big for the sponsor of my team. It’s amazing.”

Marianne Vos, who was one of several crash victims, recovered to win the sprint for second from a small chasing group in Ninove.

Full Results
1 Grace Verbeke (Bel) Lotto Ladies Team 3:09:27  
2 Marianne Vos (Ned) Nederland Bloeit 0:00:03  
3 Kirsten Wild (Ned) Cervelo TestTeam    
4 Emma Johansson (Swe) Redsun Cycling Team    
5 Adrie Visser (Ned) HTC Columbia Women    
6 Chantal Blaak (Ned)    
7 Noemi Cantele (Ita) HTC Columbia Women    
8 Judith Arndt (Ger) HTC Columbia Women    
9 Regina Bruins (Ned) Cervelo TestTeam 0:00:08  
10 Annemiek Van Vleuten (Ned) Nederland Bloeit 0:00:51  
11 Inga Cilvinaite (Ltu) Safi - Pasta Zara 0:01:47  
12 Monia Baccaille (Ita) Team Valdarno    
13 Brooke Miller (USA) TIBCO    
14 Martine Bras (Ned) Gauss RDZ Ormu    
15 Andrea Bosman (Ned)    
16 Angela Hennig (Ger) Noris Cycling    
17 Iris Slappendel (Ned) Cervelo TestTeam    
18 Carla Swart (RSA) MTN Energade    
19 Sjoukje Dufoer (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Thompson    
20 Lieselot Decroix (Bel) Cervelo TestTeam    
21 Ina Teutenberg (Ger) HTC Columbia Women    
22 Rasa Leleivyte (Ltu) Safi - Pasta Zara    
23 Giorgia Bronzini (Ita) Gauss RDZ Ormu    
24 Ludivine Henrion (Bel) Redsun Cycling Team    
26 Loes Gunnewijk (Ned) Nederland Bloeit    
27 Julia Martisova (Rus) Gauss RDZ Ormu    
28 Nicole Cooke (GBr) Great Britain    
29 Christel Ferrier-Bruneau (Fra) Vienne Futuroscope    
30 Irina Molicheva (Rus) Fenixs - Petrogradets    
31 Vicki Whitelaw (Aus) Lotto Ladies Team    
32 Tiffany Cromwell (Aus) Australia    
33 Kim Schoonbaert (Bel) Lotto Ladies Team    
34 Sarah Düster (Ger) Cervelo TestTeam    
35 Tatiana Guderzo (Ita) Team Valdarno    
36 Linda Melanie Villumsen (NZl) HTC Columbia Women    
37 Elena Berlato (Ita) Togo    
38 Trixi Worrack (Ger) Noris Cycling    
39 Alona Andruk (Ukr) Safi - Pasta Zara    
40 Edwige Pitel (Fra) S.C. Michela Fanini Record Rox    
41 Ruth Corset (Aus) TIBCO    
42 Karin Aune (Swe) Fenixs - Petrogradets    
43 Annelies Van Doorslaer (Bel) Lotto Ladies Team 0:04:27  
44 Andrea Dvorak (USA) United States Of America    
45 Roxane Knetemann (Ned) Netherlands    
46 Amber Neben (USA) United States Of America    
47 Loes Markerink (Ned) Nederland Bloeit    
48 Sofie De Vuyst (Bel) Lotto Ladies Team    
49 Janneke Kanis (Ned) Nederland Bloeit    
50 Petra Dijkman (Ned) Redsun Cycling Team    
51 Joanne Kiesanowski (NZl) TIBCO    
52 Uenia Fernandes Da Souza (Bra) Acs Chirio - Forno d'Asolo    
53 Marissa Van Der Merwe (RSA) MTN Energade    
54 Lucinda Brand (Ned)    
56 Alexis Rhodes (Aus) Australia    
57 Martina Corazza (Ita) Team Valdarno 0:06:24  
58 Maaike Polspoel (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Thompson 0:06:32  
59 Alessandra D'ettorre (Ita) Togo    
60 Marta Vila Josana Andreu (Spa) Team Valdarno    
61 Martina Zwick (Ger) Germany    
62 Tania Belvederesi (Ita) Team Valdarno    
63 Corine Hierckens (Bel) Fenixs - Petrogradets    
64 Eleonora Van Dijk (Ned) HTC Columbia Women 0:08:17  
65 Robyn De Groot (RSA) MTN Energade 0:08:54  
66 Sigrid Corneo (Slo) Togo    
67 Valentina Carretta (Ita) Togo    
68 Giada Borgato (Ita) Gauss RDZ Ormu    
69 Lylanie Lauwrens (RSA) MTN Energade    
70 Marie Lindberg (Swe) Redsun Cycling Team    
71 Isabelle Söderberg (Swe) Hitec Products UCK    
72 Alessandra Borchi (Ita) Gauss RDZ Ormu    
73 Sophie Creux (Fra) ESGL 93 - GSD Gestion    
74 Jessie Daams (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Thompson 0:11:03  
76 Rochelle Gilmore (Aus) Lotto Ladies Team    
77 Olena Oliinyk (Ukr) Acs Chirio - Forno d'Asolo    
78 Lotte Van Hoek (Ned) Netherlands    
79 Emma Trott (GBr) Great Britain 0:12:07  
80 Laure Werner (Bel) Redsun Cycling Team    
81 Fiona Dutriaux (Fra) Vienne Futuroscope    
82 Elena Kuchinskaya (Rus) Gauss RDZ Ormu    
83 Katie Colclough (GBr) Great Britain    
84 Janel Holcomb (USA) United States Of America    
85 Martina Ruzickova (Cze) S.C. Michela Fanini Record Rox    
86 Silvia Valsecchi (Ita) Togo    
87 Sara Mustonen (Swe) Hitec Products UCK    
88 Barbara Guarischi (Ita) S.C. Michela Fanini Record Rox    
89 Mascha Pijnenborg (Ned) Redsun Cycling Team    
90 Edita Unguryte (Ltu) Acs Chirio - Forno d'Asolo    
91 Monique Van De Ree (Ned)    
92 Trine Schmidt (Den) MTN Energade    
93 Anne Eversdijk (Ned) Netherlands 0:12:35  
94 Sinead Miller (USA) United States Of America    
95 Bridie O'donnell (Aus) Team Valdarno    
96 Kristine Saastad (Nor) Hitec Products UCK 0:12:53  
97 Winanda Spoor (Ned) Netherlands 0:13:04  
98 Dani King (GBr) Great Britain 0:13:47  
99 Ine Beyen (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Thompson    
100 Tetyana Mykhaylova (Ukr) Acs Chirio - Forno d'Asolo    
101 Oxana Kozonchuk (Rus) Safi - Pasta Zara    
102 Fröydis Waerstad (Nor) Hitec Products UCK    
103 Monica Holler (Swe) Fenixs - Petrogradets    
104 Nadia Triquet-Claude (Fra) Vienne Futuroscope    
105 Tone Hatteland (Nor) Hitec Products UCK 0:18:51  
106 Hannah Welter (Ned) Netherlands    
107 Daniela Pintarelli (Aut) Kuota Speed Kueens 0:19:57  
108 Hannah Mayho (GBr) Great Britain    
109 Bettina Barbara Tesar (Aut) Kuota Speed Kueens    
110 Laura Dittmann (Ger) Germany    
111 Edita Janeliunaite (Ltu) Acs Chirio - Forno d'Asolo    
112 Dorleta Zorrilla Braceras (Spa) Bizkaia - Durango    
113 Giulia Lazzerini (Ita) S.C. Michela Fanini Record Rox