E3 Saxo Bank Classic 2022

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E3 Saxo Bank Classic 2022 65th Edition Harelbeke Harelbeke 2039 km 25032022 Wout Van Aert BEL Team Jumbo Visma Christophe Laporte FRA Team Jumbo Visma photo Luca BettiniSprintCyclingAgency2022

Wout van Aert and Christophe Laporte (Jumbo-Visma) go 1-2 at E3 Saxo Bank Classic (Image credit: Sprint Cycling Agency)

Van Aert, Laporte go 1-2 for Jumbo-Visma at E3 Saxo Bank Classic

E3 Saxo Bank Classic as it happened

Wout van Aert and Christophe Laporte secured a 1-2 victory for Jumbo-Visma at  the E3 Saxo Bank Classic. The pair attacked together over the Paterberg with 40km to race and time trialed to victory in Harelbeke.

As the teammates approached the finish line, they sat up, arm-and-arm, as Laporte left Van Aert roll across the line first to take the win.

Behind, Stefan Küng (Groupama-FDJ) made a late attack and cleared a powerful chase group to take third place, with Biniam Girmay (Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert) winning the sprint for fourth place.

"The team was impressive. I have to thank every single one of the guys for setting us up in the final,” Van Aert said in a post-race interview. "Me and Christophe were supposed to be more defensive until the Paterberg and from then on we were together in front. Also a big thank you to Christophe to give me this victory. It means so much to win this big Classic in Flanders and I'm really proud of my team."

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Results - Top 10
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Wout Van Aert (Bel) Jumbo-Visma 4:38:04
2Christophe Laporte (Fra) Jumbo-Visma
3Stefan Küng (Swi) Groupama-FDJ 0:01:35
4Matej Mohoric (Slo) Bahrain Victorious 0:01:36
5Biniam Girmay (Eri) Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux
6Jhonatan Narvaez Prado (Ecu) Ineos Grenadiers
7Valentin Madouas (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
8Dylan van Baarle (Ned) Ineos Grenadiers
9Tiesj Benoot (Bel) Jumbo-Visma
10Kasper Asgreen (Den) Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl Team

E3 Saxo Bank Classic News and Features

Overview

HARELBEKE BELGIUM MARCH 25 LR Christophe Laporte of France and Wout Van Aert of Belgium and Team Jumbo Visma compete in the breakaway during the 65th E3 Saxo Bank Classic 2022 a 2039km one day race from Harelbeke to Harelbeke E3SaxobankClassic WorldTour on March 25 2022 in Harelbeke Belgium Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Wout van Aert and Christophe Laporte (Jumbo-Visma) (Image credit: Tim de WaeleGetty Images)

The E3 Saxo Bank Classic is the latest name for the race formerly known as the E3 Prijs Vlaanderen, the E3 Harelbeke, and the E3 BinckBank Classic, among others.

It's a key staging post in the cobbled season, marking the second cobbled WorldTour race of the March-April season, nestled between the Classic Brugge-De Panne and Gent-Wevelgem just over a week before the Tour of Flanders.

The 'mini Flanders' starts and finishes in Harelbeke and visits several famous Flandrian bergs along the way, including the Taaienberg, Paterberg, Oude Kwaremont, and Tiegemberg before a flat finish.

E3 Saxo Bank Classic 2022 information

  • When: Friday, March 25, 2022
  • Where: Harelbeke, Belgium
  • Start: 12:22 CET
  • Finish: 16:45 CET
  • Cyclingnews coverage: Live report, race report, results, photos, news, interviews, analysis, tech.

E3 Saxo Bank Classic 2022 route

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(Image credit: E3 Saxo Bank Classic)

The 2022 route follows a familiar format, heading into the heart of the Flemish Ardennes for 17 climbs and a total distance of 203.9 kilometres

The route starts out from Harelbeke and the opening 80km are something of a preamble, but after that there's barely any let-up. It's up and down all day, twisting and turning on the labyrinth of narrow roads and cobbles. 

The race is liable to split up from far out, but the 50km-to-go mark signals the heart of the finale, with the Kapelberg climb preceding the Paterberg and Oude Kwaremont - the key pair of Tour of Flanders climbs used in the opposite order. From there, it's the Karnemelkbeekstraat and the paved Tiegemberg before the 20km run back to Harelbeke, which includes a local loop of the town. 

E3

(Image credit: E3 Saxo Bank Classic)

E3 Saxo Bank Classic 2022 Contenders

Kasper Asgreen lines up as the defending champion and leads the QuickStep-AlphaVinyl squad into battle, although Omloop Het Nieuwsblad winner Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) is arguably the favourite given his form. 

Milan-San Remo winner Matej Mohoric will lead Bahrain Victorious, while the in-form Mads Pedersen teams up with Jasper Stuyven for Trek-Segafredo and AG2R Citroën form another two-pronged attack through 2017 winner Greg Van Avermaet and Oliver Naesen. 

Other contenders include Gianni Moscon (Astana Qazaqstan), Jhonatan Narvaez (Ineos Grenadiers), Michael Valgren (EF Education-EasyPost), Staffan Kung (Groupama-FDJ), Victor Campenaerts (Lotto Soudal), Sep Vanmarcke (Israel-Premier Tech), and Peter Sagan (TotalEnergies).

Teams for E3 Saxo Bank Classic 2022

  • AG2R Citroen Team
  • Alpecin-Fenix
  • Astana Qazaqstan Team
  • Bahrain Victorious
  • Bardiani CSF Faizane'
  • Bingoal Pauwels Sauces WB
  • B&B Hotels
  • Bora-Hansgrohe
  • Cofidis
  • EF Education-EasyPost
  • Groupama-FDJ
  • Ineos Grenadiers
  • Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux
  • Israel-Premier Tech
  • Jumbo-Visma
  • Lotto Soudal
  • Movistar Team
  • QuickStep-AlphaVinyl
  • Sport Vlaanderen-Baloise
  • Team BikeExchange-Jayco
  • Team DSM
  • TotalEnergies
  • Trek-Segafredo
  • UAE Team Emirates
  • Uno-X Pro Cycling

What happened in 2021?

Kasper Asgreen wins 2021 E3 Saxo Bank Classic

HARELBEKE BELGIUM MARCH 26 Arrival Kasper Asgreen of Denmark and Team Deceuninck QuickStep Celebration during the 64th E3 Saxo Bank Classic 2021 a 2039km race from Harelbeke to Harelbeke E3SaxobankClassic on March 26 2021 in Harelbeke Belgium Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images

Kasper Asgreen winning the 2021 E3-Saxo Bank Classic (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)

Kasper Asgreen completed an impressive and dominant tactical team effort from Deceuninck-Quickstep, winning the E3 Saxo Bank Classic ahead of an elite chasing group, led home by his teammate Florian Sénéchal ahead of Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix) after an earlier 57km effort.

Asgreen attacked first on the Taaienberg and then again with 70km to go on the Boigneberg before snapping the elastic. His Deceuninck-Quickstep teammates then marked all the attempts to chase until with 12.3km to go he was caught by a group of Classics titans: Van der Poel, Greg van Avermaet and Oliver Naesen (AG2R Citroën) and Dylan Van Baarle (Ineos Grenadiers) in addition to defending champion Zdenek Stybar and Sénéchal.

In an aggressive race, Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) lost contact on the Tiegemberg. Then with Deceuninck-Quickstep dominating the numbers, Asgreen attacked first. Van der Poel was on the front and opted not to chase, as did Naesen. That was enough for Asgreen to open a gap and his Deceuninck-Quickstep loyally defended his attack all the way to the finish. 

"I knew after the effort I did today that I wasn't going to have any chance in the last kilometre, so I had to get away and arrive alone if I wanted to win the race. It was all or nothing at that point," Asgreen explained, tired but happy.

Cyclingnews predicts

  • Wout Van Aert (Jumbo-Visma)

Belgian Wout Van Aert of Team JumboVisma celebrates as he crosses the finish line to win the mens elite race of the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad oneday cycling race 2042km from Gent to Ninove Saturday 26 February 2022 BELGA PHOTO KRISTOF VAN ACCOM Photo by KRISTOF VAN ACCOMBELGA MAGAFP via Getty Images

Wout van Aert won Omloop Het Nieuwsblad last month (Image credit: Getty Images)

The Belgian champion won the Classics opener, Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, in convincing fashion at the end of February and looks set to rule the spring. He was staggeringly strong at Paris-Nice and was to the fore again at Milan-San Remo, where tactical errors cost him. What's more, as evidenced at Omloop and Paris-Nice, his support network at Jumbo-Visma has come on leaps and bounds.

Van Aert has built his season around these next few weeks, cutting short his cyclo-cross campaign to give himself the best chance of success on the cobbles. Mathieu van der Poel is on his way back but Van Aert remains the big favourite.

E3 Saxo Bank Classic history

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2021Kasper Asgreen (Den) Deceuninck-QuickStep
2020No race due to pandemic
2019Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Deceuninck-QuickStep
2018Niki Terpstra (Ned) QuickStep Floors
2017Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team
2016Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Team Sky
2015Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky
2014Peter Sagan (Svk) Cannondale
2013Fabian Cancellara (Sui) RadioShack–Leopard
2012Tom Boonen (Bel) Omega Pharma–Quick-Step

E3 Saxo Bank Classic statistics

  • Most wins: 5, Tom Boonen
  • Most successful nation: Belgium, 39 wins
  • Oldest winner: Andrei Tchmil (38), 2001
  • Youngest winner: Dietrich Thurau (22), 1977
  • Fastest edition: 1988 - 46.9km/h
  • Biggest winning margin: 2:08 - Dietrich Thurau, 1977

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