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Lotte Kopecky takes Belgian road title

ANZEGEM BELGIUM SEPTEMBER 22 Arrival Lotte Kopecky and Team Lotto Soudal Ladies Celebration during the 121st Belgian Road Championship 2020 Road Race Elite Women a 1316km race from Anzegem to Anzegem bkanzegem Anzegem2020 on September 22 2020 in Anzegem Belgium Photo by Luc ClaessenGetty Images
Lotte Kopecky (Lotto Soudal) celebrates victory in Anzegem (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)

Fresh off a stage 7 win at the Giro d'Italia Internazionale Femminile, Lotte Kopecky (Lotto Soudal Ladies) secured her second national title of 2020 at the Belgian National Championships. After winning the time trial title last month in Koksijde, Kopecky launched a final kick at the line to win the elite women’s road race title over breakaway companion Jolien D’hoore (Boels-Dolmans) in Anzegem on Tuesday. 

Led with a charge by Kopecky, the two-rider breakaway pushed the pace from the peloton and the morning fog with 50.5km to go in the 131.6km race, which was held on seven laps of 18.8km loop. 

A bit of a cat-and-mouse game on the final climb of Tiegemberg allowed chasers to close the gap to under 20 seconds giving 20-year-old Shari Bossuyt (NXTG Racing) the chance to catch Kopecky and D’hoore. However, she could not match the final acceleration in the closing kilometre and although she had to settle for bronze, she secured the under-23 title.

"I think we drove a perfect race with the team. We took control of the race from the start,” Kopecky said in a post-race interview with Sporza. “In the end, I was in the lead with Jolien D'hoore and that was the ideal situation. I knew that I had to wear out her fast legs and I succeeded.”

With 200m to go, Lotte launched her winning sprint to outdistance Bossuyt in a photo finish.

"It was a great final. I really went for it, but I couldn't get Jolien off. Of course you are never sure in the sprint, although I felt good. I knew I shouldn't wait too long to, and that was the right decision."

It was the first elite women’s national road race title for Kopecky, who had settled for the silver four times in previous years (2014-2017). The Belgian National Championships are split up this year and in August the 24-year-old won her third time trial national title since 2017.

Brief results
Pos.Rider (Nation) TeamResult
1Lotto Kopecky (Bel) Lotto Soudal3:24:18
2Jolien D'Hoore (Bel) Boels Dolmans Cycling Team
3Shari Bossuyt (Bel) NXTG Racing0:00:06
4Elise Van der Sande (Bel)0:00:10
5Annelies Dom (Bel) Lotto Soudal
6Kim de Baat (Bel) Ciclotel
7Jesse Vandenbulcke (Bel) Lotto Soudal
8Mieke Docx (Bel) Doltcini-Van Eyck Sport
9Fien Delbaere (Bel) Multum Accountants-LSK
10Alicia Frank (Bel)
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Jackie Tyson

Jackie has been involved in professional sports for more than 30 years in news reporting, sports marketing and public relations. She founded Peloton Sports in 1998, a sports marketing and public relations agency, which managed projects for Tour de Georgia, Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah and USA Cycling. She also founded Bike Alpharetta Inc, a Georgia non-profit to promote safe cycling for people of all abilities and ages. Tyson has been recognized for communications excellence with 10 Phoenix Awards, presented by the Georgia Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America. She is proud to have worked in professional baseball for six years - from selling advertising to pulling the tarp - and was recognized by a national media outlet as the first female depicted in a pro baseball card set (Ft. Myers Royals). She has climbed l'Alpe d'Huez three times. Her favorite road rides are around horse farms in north Georgia (USA) and around lavender fields in  Provence (France). Her favorite mountain bike rides are in Park City, Utah (USA).

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