Latest News from the Race
Van Avermaet's Classics campaign ends in disappointment at Amstel Gold RaceBelgian to return to action at Tour de Yorkshire
Television motorbikes are deciding races, says LefevereQuick-Step Floors manager to write to Lappartient
Sagan closes out Classics with fourth in Amstel Gold Race - News ShortsGasparotto pleased, Matthews rues untimely flat, Wellens disappointed, Tankink on his final Amstel
Michael Valgren (Astana) claimed an emphatic victory in the Amstel Gold Race, out-sprinting former race winner Roman Kreuziger (Mitchelton-Scott). Another past champion Enrico Gasparotto (Bahrain-Merida) completed the podium.
Valgren capitalized on the presence of world champion Peter Sagan in an elite eight-rider group, attacking with just over two kilometers to go in the newly engineered finale.
As Alejandro Valverde (Movistar), Tim Wellens (Lotto Soudal) and Julian Alaphilippe (Quick-Step Floors) looked to Sagan to chase, and Valgren's teammate Fuglsang sat on, the Danish winner of Omloop Het Nieuwsblad forged out a significant gap on the rolling, narrow roads.
Kreuziger sensed the danger and rapidly bridged across, but Gasparotto hesitated a moment too long, and chased solo behind the pair, nearly making contact as Valgren opened up his sprint.
After his fourth place in the Tour of Flanders, Valgren has put his name into the hat as a Spring Classics favourite for the coming seasons.
2018 Brief Results
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team|
|1||Michael Valgren (Den) Astana Pro Team|
|2||Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Mitchelton-Scott|
|3||Enrico Gasparotto (Ita) Bahrain-Merida|
|4||Peter Sagan (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe|
|5||Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team|
|6||Tim Wellens (Bel) Lotto Soudal|
|7||Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Quick-Step Floors|
|8||Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team|
|9||Lawson Craddock (USA) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale|
|10||Jelle Vanendert (Bel) Lotto Soudal|
The twists and turns of Amstel Gold Race in a labyrinthine fashion are a defining feature of race that opens the Ardennes classics. With a staggering 32 climbs, ranging between 500 metres and 4.3km in length, and all manner of Dutch road furniture to deal with, the race is far cry from the cobbled classics of the early Spring. Most of those climbs, which average up to 9% but are generally around 5-6%, are packed into the second half of the race, when the peloton is steadily whittled down.
Between 2003 and 2012, the finish was located at the top of the Cauberg, favouring puncheurs of the ilk of Philippe Gilbert. Since then Amstel has followed the example of Valkenburg's 2012 World Championships by moving the line 1.8km beyond the crest of this hill. This move hasn't fazed Gilbert, who won the 2012 world title and has since added the 2014 and 2017 titles to his palmares
The addition of world champion Peter Sagan to the 2018 start list is intriguing and will add a different element to the race. However, the likes of Gilbert, Alejandro Valverde, Michael Valgren, Michal Kwiatkowski, Nathan Haas and Michael Matthews will be out to stop the Slovakian.
For the Complete Guide to the 2018 Ardennes Classics - Click here.
Top News on the Race
Bora extends with Peter Sagan's team through 2021World champion and team head to Amstel Gold Race 'with confidence'
Last orders for Cunego at Amstel Gold RaceItalian set for final Classic, ten years after his win
Mitchelton-Scott announce Amstel Gold Race squadAlbasini, Impey and Kreuziger all options for Australian team
Gilbert, Alaphilippe and Terpstra join forces for the Amstel Gold RaceQuick-Step Floors again opt for a multiple leader strategy
Van Avermaet to end spring Classics campaign at Amstel Gold RaceBMC squad includes Teuns, Gerrans and Caruso
Peter Sagan confirmed for Amstel Gold RaceBora-Hansgrohe name team for Sunday
Poels, Kwiatkowski and Henao lead Team Sky at Amstel Gold RaceDutchman recovers from fractured collarbone for home Classic
Poels back in training after collarbone surgeryTeam Sky rider aiming to ride Amstel Gold Race in four weeks
Peter Sagan rides high in Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne poster - News ShortsZurlo injured, wild cards for Amstel Gold, 63km of dirt roads in Strade Bianche
11 riders to watch at the Ardennes ClassicsValverde, Gilbert, Kwiatkowski and Sagan among the favourites
Ardennes Classics 2018 - The Complete GuideEssential preview of the hilly one-day races in Belgium and Holland
Matthews: Scared of the Classics? No, I'm excitedAustralian on combining Flemish and Ardennes Classics in 2018