Tour of Flanders 2018

April 1, 2018, Antwerp, Flanders, Road - WorldTour

Complete Live Report

Live commentary by:
Stephen Farrand

Welcome to the Cyclingnews live coverage of the 2018 Tour of Flanders.

 

Tour of Flanders hub page

Full start list

Race preview

Peter Sagan means business at the Tour of Flanders

Tour of Flanders tactics: How do you solve a problem like Quick-Step?

 


 

 

  1. 09:53:45 CEST

    Hello and Happy Easter from the Tour of Flanders. 

  2. 09:54:59 CEST

    The minutes are counting down to the start of this year's race. 

     

    We have a feeling it's going to be a special one! 

     

    We'll have full live coverage, from the start in Antwerp until after the finish in Oudenaarde.

     

     

  3. 10:04:59 CEST

    The riders are currently signing on after riding to the stage in the central square. 

  4. 10:05:42 CEST

    It was raining earlier but appears to have stopped. 

     

    It is dry further south and in the finish but showers are expected during the race. 

     

  5. 10:07:08 CEST

    This is the view across Antwerp. 

     

     

  6. 10:10:42 CEST

    EF Education-Drapac sign on.

     

     

  7. 10:13:01 CEST

    We''re getting close to the 10:30 roll out, with the official race start at 10:45 local time.  

     

    The official race distance is 264.7km.

     

  8. 10:15:09 CEST

    Sep Vanmarcke is a big favourite today. 

     

     

     

  9. 10:16:29 CEST

    Sep spoke briefly after sign on.

     

    "When I woke I thought I had to be proud. This is my 9th participation at the Tour of Flanders. I have to be proud. I'm going for the win."

     

  10. 10:20:07 CEST

    Next up was Peter Sagan with his Bora-Hansgrohe team.

     

     

  11. 10:21:26 CEST

    Sagan made his now famous "We'll see" prediction.

    This is how it went on stage: 

     

    How are you?" "Ok". "Are you ever nervous?" "Sometimes." Prediction. "I expect to finish the race. I hope so." 

     

  12. 10:22:37 CEST

    The riders are now lining up at the start after following the yellow carpet to the start line.

     

    The race is about to start!

     

  13. 10:23:46 CEST

    It's grey and just 7C in Antwerp and so the riders are wrapped up with warm clothes, head bands and neck warmers.

     

  14. 10:25:10 CEST

    A lot is expected from Greg van Avermaet today. 

     

     

  15. 10:27:09 CEST

    "I'll be trying to spot my friends and family along the road. Then I'll focus on the rivals," he said at the start.

     

    "I want to win. I've had great sensations so far but didn't win. Last year was the other way around. This year, this is the race I want to win."

     

  16. 10:30:26 CEST

    Here we go! They're off! 

  17. 10:31:12 CEST

    The riders roll out and begin the 9.3km neutralised sector.

     

  18. 10:32:11 CEST

    The EF riders are near the back of the peloton, while 2017 winner Gilbert is near the front.

     

  19. 10:34:46 CEST

    Most riders are wearing leg warmers, overshoes and gloves. 

     

    We can expect them to take layers off as the finale of the race and the climbs approach.

     

  20. 10:36:08 CEST

    The riders are passing under the Scheldt river. Some of them will be back here on Wednesday for the Scheldeprijs race. 

     

  21. 10:39:54 CEST

    Several riders are pulling on capes during the neutralised sector.

     

    Zdenek Stybar is getting some quick mechanical help from the team car. 

     

  22. 10:40:45 CEST

    At the front of the peloton lots of riders from the minor teams are waiting for the flag to drop to try and go in the early break of the day. 

     

  23. 10:43:03 CEST

    The boats on the river show that the wind could be a factor today.

     

    We're hearing there is a tailwind over the top of the Pateerberg, which could mean it is a great place to attack.

     

  24. 10:46:37 CEST

    The flag drops! Race on!

  25. 10:47:03 CEST

    265km to go in the 102nd edition of the Tour of Flanders.

     

  26. 10:47:27 CEST

    We immediately see some attacks and the peloton is lined out. 

     

  27. 10:50:49 CEST

    The Roompot riders are active, trying to get into breaks. 

     

    They performed well at last week's Gent-Wevelgem, with Brian van Goethem and Jan-Willem van Schip going in the break.  

     

  28. 10:51:43 CEST

    No break has formed yet but there have been several flats, including Marcel Sieberg of Lotto Soudal. 

     

     

     

  29. 10:55:33 CEST

    Golas of Sky has a problem with a wheel. He stops behind the team car to get help.

     

     

  30. 255.9km remaining from 262.9km

    10:56:24 CEST

    Italy's Filippo Ganna of UAE is up front and trying to get in the break, just as he did at Gent-Wevelgem.

     

  31. 11:00:04 CEST

    The road are still wet but the riders are heading south were the weather is expected to be better.   

     

  32. 11:02:03 CEST

    Crash! 

     

  33. 11:02:28 CEST

    Several riders went down, including Sep Vanmarcke.  

     

  34. 11:02:52 CEST

    He gets away quickly but that will raise the tension in the race.

     

  35. 11:03:13 CEST

    Alberto Bettiol of BMC is still sat on the road.

     

  36. 11:03:40 CEST

    He seemed to go down hard after tangling with another rider. 

     

  37. 11:04:11 CEST

    Vanmarcke stops so the EF mechanic can straighten his bars.

     

  38. 11:05:29 CEST

    The peloton seems to have eased slightly as Vanmarcke chases back on in.  

     

  39. 11:06:29 CEST

    A lot of riders are keen to go in the early break but big teams have riders up there marshalling the moves to control who goes up the road.

     

  40. 11:07:09 CEST

    From the CN blimp we can see Luke Rowe for Team Sky, Ilio Kiesse for Quick Step Floors and Juraj Sagan for Bora. 

     

  41. 248km remaining from 262.9km

    11:10:40 CEST

    We will also cover the women's Tour of Flanders today, mixing in info here whenever we get it. 

    The 150km women's race is about to start in Oudenaard now, with the finish scheduled for 3pm local time.

     

  42. 11:11:57 CEST

    Both Vanmarcke and Bettiol are about to return to the peloton after the early crash.

     

     

  43. 11:13:22 CEST

    The men are passing through Saint-Niklaas, where the race started for a long spell. 

     

    There is still no break and so no chance to stop.   

     

  44. 11:15:58 CEST

    This image is from our friends at Voxwomen and shows the start of the women's race.

     

     

  45. 11:16:58 CEST

    The women face 150km of racing, 11 Hellingen climbs and 5 sectors of cobbles.

     

     

  46. 11:19:41 CEST

    To better understand how the women's race will unfold, click here to read our full women's Tour of Flanders preview.

    In 2017 Coryn Rivera won the sprint finish.

     

    Coryn Rivera (Sunweb) wins 2017 Tour of Flanders Women

     

  47. 11:21:58 CEST

    Back in the men's race, we've had another tumble. 

     

    Jack Bauer (Mitchelton) slipped out on a corner, with Kiel Reijnen (Trek-Segafredo)  riding into him. Both got up quickly.

     

     

  48. 11:22:56 CEST

    The speed is high now with several groups forming off the front. The elastic is stretching. 

     

  49. 234km remaining from 262.9km

    11:27:04 CEST

    Still no break after 45km of racing in the men's race. 

     

  50. 11:32:14 CEST

    The men snake through the streets of Zogge, Greg van Avermaet's home village. 

     

    He naturally gets a huge cheers. 

     

  51. 11:34:46 CEST

    Pascal Eenkhoorn (LottoNL-Jumbo) has opened a slight gap on the peloton but they are not letting him go clear.

     

  52. 11:35:44 CEST

    It seems the reduction in team sizes to seven-rider teams is making the peloton more cautious about who they let go.

     

  53. 11:39:38 CEST

    Bahrain-Merida is active at the head of the race, trying to force a break. 

     

  54. 223km remaining from 262.9km

    11:42:02 CEST

    Koren is on the move for Bahrain. He has been joined by a Topsport rider but the peloton is not letting them go.

     

  55. 11:44:15 CEST

    Heinrich Haussler is at the back of the peloton after a change of bikes.

     

    He gives a thumbs up to show everything is okay.

     

  56. 220km remaining from 262.9km

    11:44:53 CEST

    After a fast first hour of racing, the average speed is close to 45km/h. 

     

  57. 11:49:48 CEST

    The women race is also still all together as they hit the first sector of cobbles.

     

  58. 11:50:51 CEST

    The men reach Berlare, the home of Oliver Naesen. 

     

    He hurt his knee in a crash at Dwars door Vlaanderen on Wednesday but is racing today.

     

  59. 11:51:51 CEST

    Riders keep trying to jump away from the peloton but nothing is being allowed to go away.

     

  60. 11:53:23 CEST

    The crowds are huge along the road. They now have their umbrella's out as the rain comes down.

  61. 11:54:26 CEST

    Greg van Avermaet said he'd look for his family and friends in Zogge and is currently at the back of the peloton, protected by several BMC teammates. 

     

  62. 11:56:17 CEST

    He needs to be careful because there is a split at the head of the race.

     

  63. 210km remaining from 262.9km

    11:57:45 CEST

    Small groups of riders keep jumping off the front of the peloton but other riders continue to chase them down. 

     

  64. 11:58:38 CEST

    The elastic has yet to snap with riders looking for the glory of the early break and others riding tactically to keep the race together. 

     

  65. 12:02:02 CEST

    Further south the women are racing under heavy rain. 

     

  66. 12:02:54 CEST

    After 25km of the WRVV, there have been several attacks but the race is all together.

     

     

  67. 203km remaining from 262.9km

    12:04:32 CEST

    in the men's race the rain is coming down hard and the roads are soaked. 

     

     

     

  68. 12:05:35 CEST

    Incredibly there is a car on the men's route in the centre of Aalst. The peloton moves around the car safely but that was a dangerous moment.

     

     

  69. 200km remaining from 262.9km

    12:10:20 CEST

    After 65km of racing there is so still no break in the men's race. The rain and some wind seems to be playing a part in the tactical game.

     

     

  70. 12:13:00 CEST

    Alexander Kristoff is at the back of the peloton to get some help with his saddle. 

     

  71. 12:16:24 CEST

    The high speed and the lack of a breakaway could make for a very different race in the finale. 

    We can expect the race to explode on the Kwaremont.  

     

  72. 194km remaining from 262.9km

    12:19:15 CEST

    We have a break! 

     

  73. 12:19:53 CEST

    After 70km of attacks and chasing, the peloton has eased, allowing a move to go clear. 

     

    They already have 30 seconds. 

     

  74. 12:20:37 CEST

    A touch of wheels and crash also slows the peloton.

     

    Sep Vanmarcke is caught in it again.

     

  75. 12:21:23 CEST

    The crash has split the peloton. 

     

  76. 12:24:28 CEST

    Several riders have stopped for a natural break. The pace is slow in the peloton now, so lots of riders are stopping or dropping back to get food and drinks or drop of capes.

     

  77. 12:25:00 CEST

    The break's lead is up to 1:30. 

     

  78. 188km remaining from 262.9km

    12:27:19 CEST

    The break has a lead of 2:00. 

     

    It is a big group, of at least ten riders.

     

  79. 12:27:53 CEST

    Behind the big teams have started to lead the chase or at least set the tempo.

     

     

  80. 12:29:08 CEST

    Tim Declercq and Iljo Keisse are working for Quick-Step.

     

  81. 12:30:42 CEST

    Team Sky also have several riders up front, as do BMC, protecting van Avermaet.

     

  82. 185km remaining from 262.9km

    12:34:11 CEST

    The break is working smoothly together in a double pace line.

     

  83. 12:34:40 CEST

    We'll have all the names of the 11 riders in the move very soon.  

     

  84. 180km remaining from 262.9km

    12:40:04 CEST

    AG2R and Sky are also at the head of the race now. 

     

    The break leads by 3:0 but it seems the peloton won't let them gain much more.

     

  85. 178km remaining from 262.9km

    12:42:26 CEST

    Keisse and Declercq pick up the speed as the first sector of cobbles approach.

     

  86. 12:44:49 CEST

    The breaks hits the Paddestraat, the second sector of cobbles. 

     

  87. 12:45:50 CEST

    The riders are looking for some smooth road but even the drain is made from cobbles here.   

     

  88. 173km remaining from 262.9km

    12:48:46 CEST

    The cobbles are wet and so the riders are being especially careful. 

     

  89. 12:50:15 CEST

    The peloton exits the cobbles with caution but they are pulling back the break, the gap is down to 1:50.

     

  90. 12:50:56 CEST

    Luke Durbridge takes a new front wheel from a road-side mechanic.

     

  91. 12:52:08 CEST

    Early crash victim Alberto Bettiol of BMC is at the back. He seems in pain. 

     

  92. 12:52:55 CEST

    Back on the road, several riders are eating and taking off gloves and head bands. 

     

    That's a sign the race is warming up.

     

  93. 12:53:44 CEST

    Behind cyclocross world champion Wout van Aert calls for his team car. 

     

  94. 12:56:57 CEST

    The women's race is back in Oudenaarde, with 90km to go. 

     

    Natalie van Gogh of Parkhotel Valkenburg Cycling Team is the lone attacker. She leads the peloton by 1:00.

     

  95. 13:01:42 CEST

    Cyclingnews has Barry Ryan, Patrick Fletcher, Sadhbh O'Shea, Josh Evans and our local expert Brecht Decaluwé on the ground at the Tour of Flanders. 

     

    They spoke to riders and got the latest information at the start. 

     

    They will also be at the finish in Oudenaarde to provide the full coverage of the major Classics that only Cyclingnews provides. 

     

  96. 13:02:50 CEST

    Gilbert drops back to the tam car and just after Stybar needs a front wheel change.

     

    Team support will also be vital today. 

     

  97. 13:04:34 CEST

    Van Aert was soon back in the peloton. He admitted he was excited to make his debut today but also keen to fight for victory. 

     


    "I think that it is exciting to start my first Tour of Flanders and I am just looking forward to doing this race in front of the crowds. Hopefully, I can get in the final. My goal is to go as far as possible with the top guys," he said.



    "Of course, it is one of the toughest one day races of the season. The weather predictions are not so good so it will definitely be tough."

     

    Wout Van Aert (Vérandas Willems-Crelan)

     

  98. 160km remaining from 262.9km

    13:07:19 CEST

    The peloton has let the break open a bigger bap now as they ease up. 

     

    The gap is 5:00. 

     

  99. 13:08:16 CEST

    Vanmarcke is back with his team car to get some help from the mechanic.

     

  100. 158km remaining from 262.9km

    13:12:06 CEST

    The rain is pouring down now. This year's Tour of Flanders will be a hard race for both the men and the women.

     

  101. 13:17:54 CEST

    The men's race passes through Oudenaarde but face a lot of racing before the finish here. 

     

     

  102. 13:18:40 CEST

    Jose Goncalves (Katusha) decides to head to the team bus here rather than continue in the rain.

     

  103. 13:21:22 CEST

    The women are in the middle of the 11 Hellingen now as the men pass through the feed zone and grab their lunch.  

     

  104. 150km remaining from 262.9km

    13:22:45 CEST

    Quick-Step Floors have four riders on the front setting the tempo. They know that the first passage of the Kwaremont is coming up. 

     

     

  105. 13:24:08 CEST

    The legendary climb is the of 18 Hellingen the riders face in this year's Tour of Flanders.

     

     

  106. 13:25:10 CEST

    In the women's race the climbs are sparking the first real selection. Riders are being dropped as the strongest emerge.

     

  107. 13:29:16 CEST

    We're hearing that Emilia Fahlin has crashed and quit the race after the women covered the Berendries.

     

  108. 13:30:46 CEST

    The men are approaching the Oude Kwaremont and are lucky to find dry roads for the iconic climb. 

     

    There is a fight for position in the peloton as riders protect and guide their team leaders. 

     

  109. 145km remaining from 262.9km

    13:32:06 CEST

    The cobbles of the Kwaremont always hurt and some riders are suffering the break.

     

  110. 13:33:05 CEST

    Some riders in the break switch to the strip of dirt alongside the cobbles, others stay on the ridge of the cobbles.

     

  111. 13:34:24 CEST

    The peloton squeezes as it enters the narrow road to the foot of the Kwaremont.

     

    The climb is 2200m long. It has an average gradient of 4% but has points at 11%.

     

  112. 143km remaining from 262.9km

    13:36:34 CEST

    Van Aert is at the very back of the peloton after changing back to his race bike and taking his musette. He does not seem worried.

     

    Burghardt leads the peloton.

     

  113. 13:38:44 CEST

    The riders bounce over the cobbles. The crowds are huge here. 

     

    This year the barriers seem to be a little further back to avoid crashes caused by fan objects, like the one that brought down Sagan and others last year. 

     

  114. 13:43:57 CEST

    The peloton makes is safely over the Kwaremont. 

     

  115. 13:44:21 CEST

    But in the women's race there has been a big crash. 

     

  116. 13:45:00 CEST

    At least a dozen riders went down. at speed as they raced to the foot of the Muur-Kapelmuur.

     

  117. 13:45:35 CEST

    It seems that Hosking and Gutierrez crashed.

     

  118. 13:45:52 CEST

    There are 60km to go in the women's race.

     

  119. 13:46:43 CEST

    Only 20 or so riders avoided the crash and form the front group now in the women's race. 

     

  120. 13:48:30 CEST

    Marianne Vos leads the women over the Muur.

     

  121. 13:49:25 CEST

    The crash has split the women's peloton into several groups. The cobbles are wet and so the women take it cautiously on the decent. 

     

  122. 13:49:57 CEST

    We should see a regrouping on the main road as teams reset their race tactics.

     

  123. 13:51:19 CEST

    In the men's race the peloton heads to the second hellingen. There are seven climbs in the next 50km. 

     

     

  124. 13:56:03 CEST

    The peloton comes to the top of the Kortekeer, but such is the pace, Iljo Keisse has time to sit up, take his helmet off and remove his casquette as he leads the way. 

  125. 13:58:49 CEST

    The peloton is strung out with a couple of minor splits as they return to the wide main roads. No sweat, at this point, though, and it starts to bunch up once more.

     

  126. 14:00:05 CEST

    There's been something of a regrouping in the women's race, with 35-40 riders out front. 2017 champion Coryn Rivera is in there. 

     

  127. 14:01:49 CEST

    Problems for Oliver Naesen. It looks like a mechanical issue, rather than physical. The Belgian champion, of course, injured his knee on Wednesday but was cleared to start today.

     

  128. 124km remaining from 262.9km

    14:04:12 CEST

    As the peloton take on the Edalareberg, the breakaway riders up the road hit the fourth climb of the day, the Wolvenberg. They still have a lead of five minutes.

     

  129. 14:08:42 CEST

    Bora and Quick-Step both fight for the front spot as the peloton hits the Wolvenberg. It's a tarmacked climb, 645 metres long at 7.9%. 

     

  130. 14:11:22 CEST

    The Wolvenberg leads into the Holleweg sector of cobbles. Juraj Sagan takes to the front for Bora. 

     

  131. 14:12:07 CEST

    After a spate of attacks, things have calmed down again in the women's race with just under 50km, and five climbs, to go. 

     

  132. 14:15:25 CEST

    And here are BMC... Fran Ventoso hits the front and Van Avermaet is in his wheel. The pace has increased. 

     

  133. 14:17:07 CEST

    Ian Stannard now takes over for Team Sky. The peloton are on their way to the Haghoek sector of cobbles, which leads into the Leberg climb. 

     

  134. 115km remaining from 262.9km

    14:17:53 CEST

    The increase in pace sees the breakaway's advantage fall to 3:45 as they take on the Leberg. 

     

  135. 14:18:48 CEST

    FDJ lead the bunch on Haghoek as the break hit the top of the Leberg. 

     

  136. 14:21:50 CEST

    FDJ still have two riders ahead of Arnaud Demare as they lead onto the Leberg. It's 950 metres long with a fluctuating gradient that averages out to 4.2%. 

     

  137. 111km remaining from 262.9km

    14:22:51 CEST

    5 hellingen down, 13 to go...

     

  138. 14:24:23 CEST

    There's no real let-up in this phase of the race. Up front the breakaway riders hit the Berendries (940m at 7%). 3:15 is the gap. 

     

  139. 14:27:20 CEST

    The peloton is packed tight for the Berendries.

     

     

  140. 108km remaining from 262.9km

    14:27:58 CEST

    A touch of wheels means Niki Terpstra has to put a foot down and he takes the chance to get ride of his cape too.

     

  141. 14:29:42 CEST

    The peloton reach the top together and begin a wet descent.

     

    Next up is the Tenbosse and then the Kwaremont. 

     

  142. 14:30:58 CEST

    FDJ has decided to take control of the peloton. 

     

  143. 14:35:14 CEST

    The went descent sees riders take to the footpath on a right turn. 

     

  144. 14:37:46 CEST

    It's a busy race for EF mechanics. After Langeveld needs help, Scully flats.

     

    It will be hard for Scully to get back on now.

     

     

  145. 14:38:55 CEST

    The speed is high because the riders know the Oude Kwaremont is close. 

     

    Position is vital now.

     

  146. 14:40:07 CEST

    All the big teams are trying to position their leaders near the front.

     

  147. 14:40:27 CEST

    They all know the race 'started' big time last year.

     

  148. 14:41:34 CEST

    Crash!!!

     

  149. 14:41:56 CEST

    Naesen is involved. Stannard too.

     

  150. 14:42:16 CEST

    Valgren and Lutsenko too. 

     

  151. 14:42:31 CEST

    Schar of BMC also crashed. 

     

  152. 97km remaining from 262.9km

    14:43:47 CEST

    The crash has split the peloton as they speed to the Kwaremont.

     

  153. 14:44:10 CEST

    Riders went into the ditch on both sides of the road.

     

  154. 14:44:49 CEST

    Riders are trying to chase in the cars but the race is definitely 'on'.

     

  155. 14:45:42 CEST

    We said the riders are approaching the Kwaremont but we meant the Kapelmuur. 

     

  156. 95km remaining from 262.9km

    14:46:53 CEST

    When the men's race crosses the summit of the Kapelmuur, we'll switch our focus to the women's race for the finale.

     

  157. 14:47:18 CEST

    As expected, the Muur smashes the break, leaving the weakest behind. 

     

  158. 14:47:51 CEST

    Cortina is the first to the top. 

     

  159. 14:48:17 CEST

    Here comes the peloton.

     

  160. 14:49:02 CEST

    Benoot and Van Aert are near the front as the Muur kicks in. 

     

    Nibali is still there too.

     

  161. 14:49:28 CEST

    The rough cobbles and steep climb lines out the peloton, making position vital. 

     

  162. 14:49:44 CEST

    Sagan is covered on the wheels.

     

  163. 14:50:12 CEST

    Fortunately for the men, the cobbles are now dry.

     

  164. 14:50:34 CEST

    Naesen is further back as he chases after the crash.

     

  165. 14:51:25 CEST

    Naesen is close to 2:00 behind. It will be almost impossible for him to close that gap.

     

    His race seems over. 

     

  166. 14:53:01 CEST

    As the men's race settles for the final 90km of racing, why not listen to the Cyclingnews podcast to prepare for the decisive attacks. 

     

    Click here for out special Flanders Classics edition.

     

  167. 14:54:46 CEST

    The men get a chance to catch their break for the next 20km and so we're going to switch our coverage to the finale of the women's race. 

    We'll keep you up to date with any important news from the men's race but focus on the final 20km of the women's race.

     

  168. 14:56:53 CEST

    The women are about to hit the double decisive whammy of the Oude Kwaremont and the Paterberg.

     

  169. 14:58:49 CEST

    Anna van der Breggen still leads by 1:00. 

     

    That's a brave attack but could be decisive.

     

  170. 15:01:26 CEST

    Anna van der Breggen spins over the Kwaremont despite some boos from the partisan Belgian crowd. 

     

  171. 15:01:51 CEST

    Behind her the peloton is splitting under the effort. 

     

  172. 15:03:15 CEST

    D'hoore is further back, as is Rivera. 

     

    It will be fascinating to see if the race comes back together on the flat roads to the finish.

     

    17km to go in the women's race.

     

  173. 15:06:01 CEST

    15km to go in the women's race. 

     

    Anna van der Breggen still leads by a minute.

     

     

  174. 15:06:41 CEST

    She stomps on the pedals as the Paterberg begins.

     

  175. 15:07:06 CEST

    After all the rain, the sun is out now.  

     

  176. 15:08:12 CEST

    Anna van der Breggen gets some help from a tailwind but needs to go deep now to stay away.

     

  177. 15:09:28 CEST

    Katarzyna Niewiadoma is strongest behind but reaches the top of the Paterberg 40 seconds down. 

     

  178. 15:11:25 CEST

    In the men's race, the remains of the early break is about to be caught but the peloton has been split into different groups. 

     

    We're about to see the start of the real 'finale'. 

     

  179. 15:11:52 CEST

    80km to go in the men's race.

     

  180. 15:12:29 CEST

    Katarzyna Niewiadoma has been joined by three other riders but van der Breggen is still over a minute clear.

     

  181. 15:12:46 CEST

    She's focused on time trailing to the finish.

     

  182. 15:16:17 CEST

    Anna van der Breggen made her move between the Kruisberg and Hotond climbs, with 28km to go.

    She took her rivals by surprise but quickly opened a gap. 

     

  183. 15:16:46 CEST

    With 7km to go, she's extending her lead past 1:30.

     

  184. 15:19:25 CEST

    In the chasing quartet are Annemiek van Vleuten, Katarzyna Niewiadoma, Ashleigh Moolman and Amy Pieters. But they struggling to pull back time.

     

  185. 15:20:59 CEST

    The Boels team car comes up along Anna van der Breggen to enjoy the moment. She is about to win the Tour of Flanders.

     

  186. 15:22:14 CEST

    Anna van der Breggen passes through an exposed section but her leads is still 1:30. 

     

    She is just 3.5km away from victory.

     

  187. 15:24:35 CEST

    Behind Anna van der Breggen the two chase groups come together. Boels have 3 riders behind who have been able to sit on. 

     

    They could fill the podium behind Anna van der Breggen

     

    2km to go! 

     

  188. 15:26:03 CEST

    Anna van der Breggen enters the final km. 

     

  189. 15:26:42 CEST

    Van Dijk closes the gap between the chase groups. It will be a thrilling sprint for the podium. 

     

  190. 15:27:00 CEST

    Here comes Anna van der Breggen. She's going to win solo. 

     

  191. 15:27:32 CEST

    Anna van der Breggen begins to celebrate with 200m to go. 

     

  192. 15:27:46 CEST

    What a win for Anna van der Breggen.

     

  193. 15:27:59 CEST

    She hits the finish tired but very happy. 

     

  194. 15:30:39 CEST

    Boels enjoy a 1-2 with Amy Pieters taking second.   

     

  195. 15:31:16 CEST

    Annemiek van Vleuten was third for Mitchelton-Scott.

     

  196. 15:31:54 CEST

    Interesting to see UCI officials tag bikes at the finish, no doubt to be x-rayed for mechanical doping.  

     

  197. 15:33:54 CEST

    Back in the men's race the peloton is pretty much compact with 65km to go. 

    A small group as 1:30 but is not a threat. 

    Bora have decided to take control of the chase.

     

     

  198. 15:36:03 CEST

    To read more about the women's race and see our photo gallery, click here.

     

    Anna van der Breggen on the podium following her stage 5 victory at the Boels Ladies Tour

     

     

  199. 15:39:46 CEST

    Van der Breggen spoke about her win before the podium.

     

    "This is the big one. I didn't expect to win this way. It's really great to win this great race in Belgium," van der Breggen said.

     

    "This victory goes pretty high in my palmares of course. not only is it a big race, one of the biggest of the season, it's was really great.

     

    "We have a good team here with many riders stronger this year than before. That helps a lot. It's great to win this race and finish second. too.

     

    "It's a really tough race but its really fun to win it."

     

     

  200. 15:41:23 CEST

    As Anna van der Breggen and Boels Dolmans celebrate victory at the women's Tour of Flanders, we're going to head to the men's race for the final 60km of racing. 

     

     

  201. 15:41:46 CEST

    We will have full coverage, news and interviews from the women's race.

     

  202. 15:42:43 CEST

    As we focus on the men's race the peloton starts the Oude Kwaremont again. 

     

    Fasten your seatbelt! 

     

  203. 15:43:43 CEST

    Mitch Docker crashes. He fell slowly but rolled into the barbed wire.  

     

  204. 15:46:20 CEST

    As the cobbles begin, there's a shake out as Yves Lampaert ups the speed for Quick Step. 

     

  205. 15:47:10 CEST

    The peloton is going to split. 

     

  206. 15:47:31 CEST

    Sagan and others are in the second group. 

     

  207. 15:49:15 CEST

    The lead group eases back on the main road but there are gaps between groups that formed the peloton. 

     

  208. 15:49:42 CEST

    However Sagan makes it back on. He was lucky the leaders didn't accelerate. 

     

  209. 53km remaining from 262.9km

    15:50:56 CEST

    Van Avermaet and Gilbert are both behind the front group but they are close to getting back on. 

     

  210. 15:51:48 CEST

    Ivan Garcia Cortina (Bahrain-Merida) and Tom Devriendt (Wanty-Groupe Gobert) start the Paterberg. 

     

    When the chasers pass here we will really find out who is a real contenders and who not. 

     

  211. 15:53:01 CEST

    Kwiatkowski spins his way up the Paterberg, while others  struggle with the gradient.

     

  212. 15:54:03 CEST

    Naesen has done well to get back up to the head of the race after his crash before the Muur. 

     

    Nibali is also up front. Van Avermaet is there too but seems to be struggling to stay up front. 

     

  213. 15:55:29 CEST

    Next up is Hellingen number 13 of 18: the legendary Koppenberg.  

     

  214. 15:56:19 CEST

    The peloton has split again on the exposed country roads over the top of the Patenberg. 

     

     

  215. 16:00:07 CEST

    Who is your favourite to win the Tour of Flanders?

    Click here to read our top 12 contenders. 

     

    This is Sporza's star ranking for this year.

     

     

  216. 16:01:08 CEST

    Here comes the Koppenberg. This going to hurt. 

     

  217. 16:01:57 CEST

    The chasers can see the riders up front as they fight for the best line in the gutter. 

     

  218. 16:03:20 CEST

    Meanwhile, we're hearing that Luke Rowe of Team Sky has been DQ'd from the race for riding on the footpath. 

     

     

  219. 16:04:33 CEST

    Everyone is forced to go deep over the top of the cobbled climb. 

    One rider was forced to stop mid-way up and so others were stopped too. 

     

  220. 43km remaining from 262.9km

    16:07:59 CEST

    It's Quick-Step who lead the chase now with the three leaders holding a 25-second advantage. Just 42km to and we're down to around 40-50 riders in the main field. 

  221. 16:08:58 CEST

    Lampaert is the rider chasing for the Belgian team, while Sagan just sits in and waits. He has one man left, Daniel Oss, as the leaders move their advantage out to 30 seconds.

     

  222. 16:10:35 CEST

    And FDJ take over for Demare on the front of the peloton. Nibali is still there, Kristoff looked really good on the previous climbs, while Trentin is also in contention. 

     

  223. 16:11:21 CEST

    There are maybe 30 riders left in the Sagan/Van Avermaet/Gilbert group.

     

  224. 38km remaining from 262.9km

    16:14:59 CEST

     As we hit the Taaienberg, van Avermaet attacks hard and splits the group.

  225. 16:15:23 CEST

    Doing a 'Boonen' surge, only the strongest stay on his wheel. 

     

  226. 16:16:01 CEST

    The three riders up front only lead by 30 seconds now.

     

  227. 16:16:41 CEST

    Van Avermaet's surge did not crack any of the big names but we saw who is strong and who needed time to get back on. 

     

  228. 16:18:14 CEST

    Terpstra tries to split the group but everyone is on his wheel. 

    This will be a very tactical final 35km, making it fascinating to follow. 

     

  229. 16:18:38 CEST

    Stybar accelerates now. 

     

  230. 16:19:11 CEST

    Stybar is joined by Roelandts plus Moscon.

     

  231. 16:19:36 CEST

    But Stybar is not happy and eases up.  

     

  232. 16:20:45 CEST

    Sagan is up front in the group of 20 or so strongest. He looks at his rivals as teammate Oss goes deep to set the pace and chase the three up front.  

     

  233. 16:21:16 CEST

    The three are Dylan van Baarle (Team Sky), Sebastian Langeveld (EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale) and Mads Pedersen (Trek-Segafredo). 

     

  234. 16:22:18 CEST

    Sky, EF and Trek can stay on the wheels but Quick-Step need to help with the chase if they want to keep the race under control. 

     

  235. 16:24:29 CEST

    Sky are trying to slow the pace for van Baarle, Kwaito is sat behind Oss, with Moscon behind the Pole.  

     

  236. 16:25:19 CEST

    Also in the group of big names are Boasson Hagen, Nibali, Demare, Kristoff... 

     

  237. 16:26:10 CEST

    Quick-Step have Gilbert, Lampaert, Terpstra and Stybar.

     

  238. 16:27:46 CEST

    We can also see Styven for Trek, Va Aert, van Avermaet, Trentin, Valgren and Cort Nielsen.

     

  239. 28km remaining from 262.9km

    16:29:08 CEST

    The break of three hit the Kruisberg. 

     

  240. 16:29:49 CEST

    The chasers seem to be waiting for the big finale on the  Kwaremont Paterberg double whammy. 

     

  241. 16:30:41 CEST

    These are many of the big names in the chase group: Terpstra, Benoot, Gilbert, Van Avermaet, Sagan, Van Aert, Vanmarcke, Stuyven, Kristoff, Nibali, Démare, Naesen, Kwiatkowski, Trentin, Stybar, Colbrelli, Boasson-Hagen, Moscon, Roelandts, Oss, Haussler, Politt and Valgren Andersen.

     

    Mike Teunissen bridged up solo shortly after the Koppenberg.

     

  242. 16:31:14 CEST

    As the cobbles end, the attacks come. 

     

    Colbrelli kicks it off but is chased down.

     

  243. 16:31:37 CEST

    Now Nibali goes solo. He tucks slow and gives it everything. 

     

  244. 16:32:00 CEST

    Vanmarcke flats behind and calls his car. 

     

  245. 16:32:28 CEST

    Terpstra joins Nibali, the two have a gap. 

     

  246. 16:33:05 CEST

    Terpstra pushes on alone as Moscon and van Avermaet try to close the gap. 

     

  247. 16:33:37 CEST

    Terpstra goes into TT mode just as he did lat E3 Harelbeke. 

     

  248. 25km remaining from 262.9km

    16:34:33 CEST

    Terpstra is trying to go across to to the trio up front. 

     

    Now who will chase behind?  

     

  249. 16:35:44 CEST

    Terpstra needs to get across before or during the Kwaremont and Paterberg. 

     

  250. 16:35:45 CEST

    Terpstra needs to get across before or during the Kwaremont and Paterberg. 

     

  251. 16:36:36 CEST

    The roads are dry now after the riders raced 150km on wet roads.

     

  252. 16:37:38 CEST

    Behind BMC and Astana lead the chase. 

     

  253. 22km remaining from 262.9km

    16:38:42 CEST

    The chasers are closing the gap on Terpstra. He's making a big effort but the trio up front are also fighting to hold him off. 

     

  254. 16:39:43 CEST

    Dylan van Baarle (Team Sky), Sebastian Langeveld (EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale) and Mads Pedersen (Trek-Segafredo) lead by 40 seconds.

     

    They can pace their effort on the Kwaremont and Paterberg. Everyone else will have to go full gas. 

     

  255. 16:40:30 CEST

    As the chasers turn right towards the Kwaremont, Sagan jumps on the kerb to move up. 

     

  256. 16:41:17 CEST

    Does Sagan know that Rowe was DQ'd for riding on the footpath earlier?  

     

  257. 16:41:53 CEST

    Sep Vanmarcke is back in the group of chasers. He could win this year. 

     

  258. 16:42:29 CEST

    Cort Nielsen tries to go across from the chasers, as Terpstra closes the gap on the three leaders. 

     

  259. 19km remaining from 262.9km

    16:42:47 CEST

    The Dutchman can see them now. 

     

  260. 16:43:24 CEST

    Terpstra powers past them and tries to drop them over the top of the Kwaremont. 

     

  261. 16:43:54 CEST

    The cobbles are rough and tough here. 

     

  262. 16:44:26 CEST

    Only Pedersen is able to hold Terpstra's wheel. But he is suffering too. 

     

  263. 16:44:42 CEST

    Behind Vanmarcke and Benoot surge. 

     

  264. 18km remaining from 262.9km

    16:45:19 CEST

    Naesen is gapped but all the big names are there. 

     

  265. 16:45:39 CEST

    Benoot ups the pace again. 

     

  266. 16:46:01 CEST

    Behind Kwaito and Lampaert crack and are distanced.

     

  267. 16km remaining from 262.9km

    16:46:52 CEST

    Up front Terpstra is solo on the main road.  

     

  268. 16:47:12 CEST

    The others are spread down the road. 

     

  269. 16:47:38 CEST

    After some hesitate, Sagan kicks hard and attacks. 

     

    Who can go with him? 

     

  270. 15km remaining from 262.9km

    16:48:54 CEST

    Terpstra leads by 40 seconds. It his race to lose now. Can he manage his effort and stay away until the finish?

     

     

  271. 16:49:19 CEST

    The Paterberg will be the final judge today.

     

  272. 16:49:50 CEST

    The Paterberg is cobbled and steep. 

     

  273. 16:50:19 CEST

    Pedersen refuses to give up but is struggling behind Terpstra.

     

  274. 16:50:52 CEST

    Behind the 10 chasers start the Paterberg 30 second down on Terpstra.

     

  275. 16:51:12 CEST

    Vanmarcke ups the pace, Sagan is on him. 

     

     

  276. 16:51:41 CEST

    But they top the Paterberg 30 seconds down on Terpstra. 

     

  277. 13km remaining from 262.9km

    16:52:10 CEST

    Sagan is alone in pursuit of Terpstra.

     

  278. 12km remaining from 262.9km

    16:53:02 CEST

    Sagan is going all in alone. 

     

  279. 16:53:26 CEST

    Ten or so riders are behind Sagan. 

     

  280. 16:54:01 CEST

    Sagan is 31 seconds down on Terpstra.

     

  281. 16:54:58 CEST

    Sagan tucks low over his bike but is struggling to close the gap on Terpstra and Pedersen ahead of him.

     

  282. 9km remaining from 262.9km

    16:55:47 CEST

    The chasers are closing the gap on Sagan. 

     

  283. 16:56:24 CEST

    Terpstra dances on the pedals as he fights the gradient on a bridge. 

     

  284. 16:56:46 CEST

    Pedersen is 35 seconds behind him. Sagan is at 45 seconds.

     

  285. 16:57:08 CEST

    Sagan eases up. He knew his solo chase was useless.  

     

  286. 16:57:32 CEST

    Who can stop Terpstra now? Probably only a flat. 

     

  287. 16:58:29 CEST

    The Sagan chase group has lost enthusiasm as some riders avoid doing turns.

     

  288. 16:58:57 CEST

    But Van Aert ups the speed. The gap is down to 21 seconds now.

     

  289. 6km remaining from 262.9km

    16:59:38 CEST

    Pedersen is fighting to hold onto second place but he is fading.

     

  290. 17:00:07 CEST

    We stand corrected. The 21 second gap is between Terpstra and Pedersen. 

     

    The Sagan group is at 38 seconds. 

     

  291. 5km remaining from 262.9km

    17:00:45 CEST

    The chasers are working but are struggling to close the gap. 

     

  292. 17:01:38 CEST

    Terpstra stays tucked low on his bars. He's riding smoothly, using his track and TT skills.  

     

  293. 17:02:38 CEST

    Terpstra is out front alone. The gaps are too small to allow the Quick-Step car up to him.

     

  294. 4km remaining from 262.9km

    17:03:21 CEST

    The Sagan group can see Pedersen. He is just 15 seconds ahead of them. The young Dane is tired but still fighting. 

     

  295. 17:05:37 CEST

    Terpstra is riding to victory at the 2018 Tour of Flanders.

     

  296. 2km remaining from 262.9km

    17:06:09 CEST

    There's an attack behind, Gilbert chases Valgren as they fight for the podium spots.

     

  297. 1km remaining from 262.9km

    17:06:39 CEST

    Last KM for Terpstra. He can almost see the finish line. 

     

  298. 17:07:29 CEST

    Terpstra has just 500m to go. 

     

  299. 17:07:58 CEST

    Terpstra eases up and celebrates as he wins the Tour of Flanders. 

     

  300. 17:08:13 CEST

    Pedersen holds on for second place.

     

  301. 17:08:38 CEST

    Gilbert beats Valgren for third place. 

     

  302. 17:09:41 CEST

    The other riders sprint behind for the minor places. 

     

  303. 17:10:34 CEST

    It is chaos at the finish as Quick-Step Floors celebrate their big win.

     

  304. 17:12:10 CEST

    Terpstra and Quick-Step Floor played a perfect tactic by sending the Dutchman away, forcing the others to chase and compete against each other.

     

  305. 17:13:11 CEST

    Terpstra is the first Dutch winner at the Ronde van Vlaanderen since Adrie van der Poel in 1986.

     

     

  306. 17:13:59 CEST

    Terpstra is covered in dirt but is happy, hugging his friends and team staff.

     

  307. 17:15:08 CEST

    Niki Terpstra rides solo to the finish at E3 Harelbeke

     

  308. 17:16:33 CEST

    Terpstra also hugs Quick-Step Floors team manager Patrick Lefevere. 

     

    He celebrated 20 years of success with Quick-Step on Friday. Now Terpstra has given him another Flanders victory  and the team's 21st victory of 2018.  

     

  309. 17:17:00 CEST

    Terpstra is close to tears as he talks on Flemish about his win.  

     

  310. 17:18:02 CEST

    It's a dream," he says. 

     

  311. 17:20:22 CEST

    Terpstra was almost too happy and too tired to talk.

     

    "Winning Paris-Roubaix and now the Tour of Flanders... Those two races were always a big dream for me when I was young kid, I was already crazy about those two races. Now they're both on my palmares. I can't describe how happy I am," he said.     

     

  312. 17:21:23 CEST

    This is the top ten for the Tour of Flanders.

     

    1 Niki Terpstra (Ned) Quick-Step Floors
    2 Mads Pedersen (Den) Trek-Segafredo
    3 Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Quick-Step Floors
    4 Michael Valgren (Den) Astana Pro Team
    5 Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team
    6 Peter Sagan (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe
    7 Jasper Stuyven (Bel) Trek-Segafredo
    8 Tiesj Benoot (Bel) Lotto Soudal
    9 Wout Van Aert (Bel) Veranda's Willems Crelan
    10 Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Quick-Step Floors 

     

  313. 17:22:19 CEST

    That shows the quality and the difficulty of today's race. 

     

    The best and strongest Classics riders emerged after 267km of racing on the Flemish hills. 

     

  314. 17:27:09 CEST

    Terpstra's win at the Tour of Flanders continues Quick-Step Floor's dominance this season.

     

    They have now won Le Samyn, Dwars door West Vlaanderen, Handzame Classic, De Panne, E3 Harelbeke, Dwars door Vlaanderen and the Tour of Flanders.

     

     

     

  315. 17:30:20 CEST

    It's important to highlight that Terpstra attacked alone after chasing after Vincenzo Nibali over the top of the Kruisberg. 

     

    He then paced his effort to catch and pass Van Baarle, Pedersen and Langeveld on the Kwaremont. 

     

    He then used his TT skills and endurance to stay away. 

     

  316. 17:32:11 CEST

    As Terpstra and Quick-Step celebrate, other riders are heading to the team buses. 

     

     

  317. 17:32:56 CEST

    Sprza seems to show Taylor Phinney and Ryan Mullen enjoys some well-deserved Frits.

     

  318. 17:33:15 CEST

    Meanwhile for Terpstra it's podium time. 

     

  319. 17:33:53 CEST

    The podium is away from the finish, with a huge crowd gathering underneath to see Terpstra, Pedersen and Gilbert celebrate.

     

     

  320. 17:36:28 CEST

    Quick-Step floors posted this image of Terpstra and Gilbert celebrating. 

     

     

  321. 17:39:18 CEST

    As Terpstra celebrates on the podium, we have the first images of his win. 

     

    Niki Terpstra (Quick-Step Floors) wins the 2018 Tour of Flanders

     

  322. 17:41:31 CEST

    Vincenzo Nibali's attack set up Terpstra's attack. 

     

    He stopped to speak after his race. 

     

     

  323. 17:43:58 CEST

     It was a double day of success at the Tour of Flanders for the Netherlands. 

     

    Niki Terpstra won the men's race, while Anna van der Breggen (Boels Dolmans Cycling team) won the women's race. 

     

    They stood together on the podium. 

  324. 17:45:15 CEST

     

  325. 17:47:24 CEST

    Terpstra has only won 22 races during his career but has now on both the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix.

     

    He won the French monument in 2014 with a similar solo attack.

     

  326. 17:49:42 CEST

    No wonder Quick-Step team manager. This is his long list of Tour of Flanders winners (via @ammattipyoraily). 

     

    1993 Johan Museeuw
    1995 Johan Museeuw
    1998 Johan Museeuw
    2002 Andrea Tafi
    2005 Tom Boonen
    2006 Tom Boonen
    2008 Stijn Devolder
    2009 Stijn Devolder
    2012 Tom Boonen
    2017 Philippe Gilbert
    2018 Niki Terpstra

     

  327. 17:54:12 CEST

    To better understand how the race unfolded, click here to read our full race report and see our massive photo gallery.

     

    Niki Terpstra (Quick-Step Floors) wins Tour of Flanders

     

     

  328. 17:58:02 CEST

    The CN reporters are at the team buses speaking to the riders about their race.This is Peter Sagan at the Bora bus. He suggested he was happy with his performance. 

     

     

  329. 18:04:07 CEST

    This was arguably the moment when Terpstra won the Tour of Flanders. He got across to the trio up front and then dropped them on the Kwaremont.

     

    Niki Terpstra climbs into the lead at Tour of Flanders

     

  330. 18:09:03 CEST

    Terpstra was a deserved winner but Mads Pedersen (Trek-Segafredo) was the revelation of the race.

     

    He's shown his huge talent before but impressed by the way he took on the race and held on to finish second. 

     

    "We have two leaders on the team and the role was to play me out a little bit early to put pressure on the other teams, but to come so far? I didn't expect that," he said post-race.

     

    Mads Pedersen (Trek-Segafredo) in Flanders

     

  331. 18:22:28 CEST

    The time gaps in the top ten tell the story of the final kilometres.

    Terpstra won alone, Pedersen held on bravely for second. Gilbert beat Valgren for third place, with Van Avermaet winning the sprint as best of the rest, some 25 seconds down. 

     

    1 Niki Terpstra (Ned) Quick-Step Floors 06:21:25
    2 Mads Pedersen (Den) Trek-Segafredo 00:00:12
    3 Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Quick-Step Floors 00:00:17
    4 Michael Valgren (Den) Astana Pro Team 00:00:20
    5 Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team 00:00:25
    6 Peter Sagan (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe 00:00:25
    7 Jasper Stuyven (Bel) Trek-Segafredo 00:00:25
    8 Tiesj Benoot (Bel) Lotto Soudal 00:00:25
    9 Wout Van Aert (Bel) Veranda's Willems Crelan 00:00:25
    10 Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Quick-Step Floors 00:00:25

     

  332. 18:31:32 CEST

    Thanks for joining us for live coverage from the Tour of Flanders.

     

    To read our full men's race report and see our huge photo gallery, click here.

     

    Niki Terpstra (Quick-Step Floors) wins the 2018 Tour of Flanders

     

  333. 18:32:57 CEST

    To read our full women's report and see the photo gallery, click here.

     

    Anna van der Breggen wins the 2018 Tour of Flanders

     

  334. 18:34:22 CEST

    Keep checking Cyclingnews as we update the site with interviews and news from the race. 

     

    We'll also have all the latest tech news and analysis from the race. 

     

    Thanks again for enjoying the ride with us. 

     

    We'll be back during the week for the Vuelta a Pais Vasco and of course next weekend for Paris-Roubaix. 

     

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