Remco Evenepoel (Deceuninck-QuickStep) took his first WorldTour one-day race victory Saturday in Spain, soloing over the final 8km at Clásica San Sebastián to win alone. The 19-year-old dropped Toms Skujinš (Trek-Segafredo) on the final climb and then held off the chase over the closing 7km to secure the win.
"I really did not feel good today for most of the race," said Evenepoel, who was dropped form the bunch on the penultimate climb. "I did not to go so early, but I knew with power I could take [Skujinš] in the climb, and this is incredible. I really cannot believe this. It's unbelievable. I'll be honest, it was really a dream to once win this race in my career, and now I've done it already. It's incredible. I really didn't expect this. It's incredible."
How it unfolded
The early going of the 227.3km Spanish one-day race was animated by a large breakaway that eventually gave way to a solo effort by Fernando Barceló (Euskadi Basque Country-Murias), who was alone with 70km remaining as Movistar drove the chase back in the bunch.
Barceló’s solo effort was short-lived, however, as the pace in the bunch in anticipation of the penultimate climb soon had him back in the fold.
Greg Van Avermaet’s CCC Team came to the front to relieve Movistar before the start of the climb with about 40km remaining, then Deceuninck-QuickStep and UAE Team Emirates moved forward.
Movistar took over on the climb proper and set a pace that split the bunch, dropping UAE’s Dan Martin in the process. The Spanish team drove the pace on the descent with just over 35km remaining as the dropped riders struggled to get back on before the final climb and then a long 7km run to the finish.
Skujinš and Evenepoel slipped away with less than 20km to go and built a quick lead of 45 seconds in the valley between the climbs. The lead duo carried that advantage onto the ascent and added to it on the lower slopes. Back in the bunch, Movistyar swarmed to the front hoping to set up Alejandro Valverde.
Evenepoel attacked Skujins on the steepest part of the climb, but the Latvian champion was able to fend off the move and stick the young Belgian’s wheel.
Valverde indeed made his move on the climb, inciting action from most of the pre-race favourites, while Evenepoel freed himself from Skujinš’ grasp and set off on his own.
Evenepoel crested the final climb with a 42-second lead over the peloton while the attacks among the big names flew repeatedly behind him. With 5km to go the young Belgian had 35 seconds over the chasers, and his chances to land his first WorldTour one-day race looked all but assured.
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Remco Evenepoel (Bel) Deceuninck-QuickStep||5:44:27|
|2||Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) CCC Team||0:00:38|
|3||Marc Hirschi (Swi) Team Sunweb|
|4||Gorka Izagirre Insausti (Spa) Astana Pro Team|
|5||Bauke Mollema (Ned) Trek-Segafredo|
|6||Patrick Konrad (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe|
|7||Jelle Vanendert (Bel) Lotto Soudal|
|8||Enric Mas Nicolau (Spa) Deceuninck-QuickStep|
|9||Michael Woods (Can) EF Education First|
|10||Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team|
|11||Giulio Ciccone (Ita) Trek-Segafredo|
|12||Rudy Molard (Fra) Groupama-FDJ|
|13||Toms Skujins (Lat) Trek-segafredo||0:00:41|
|14||Hugh John Carthy (GBr) EF Education First||0:00:46|
|15||Edward Dunbar (Irl) Team Ineos||0:00:56|
|16||Julien Simon (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits||0:01:07|
|17||Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Team Dimension Data|
|18||Mark Padun (Ukr) Bahrain-merida||0:01:15|
|19||Pello Bilbao Lopez de Armentia (Spa) Astana pro Team|
|20||Simon Clarke (Aus) Ef Education First|
|21||Valentin Madouas (Fra) Groupama-fdj|
|22||Gregor Mühlberger (Aut) Bora-hansgrohe||0:01:22|
|23||Brent Bookwalter (USA) Mitchelton-scott|
|24||Lucas Hamilton (Aus) Mitchelton-scott||0:01:23|
|25||Sepp Kuss (USA) Team Jumbo-visma||0:01:26|
|26||Dries Devenyns (Bel) Deceuninck-quick-step||0:01:43|
|27||Anthony Roux (Fra) Groupama-fdj||0:01:46|
|28||Sergei Chernetskii (Rus) Caja Rural-seguros Rga|
|29||Anthony Perez (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits|
|30||Julien Bernard (Fra) Trek-segafredo|
|31||Nicolás Jonathan Castroviejo (Spa) Team Ineos|
|32||Daniel Martin (Irl) Uae Team Emirates||0:02:24|
|33||Jonathan Caicedo (Ecu) Ef Education First|
|34||Omar Fraile Matarranz (Spa) Astana pro Team||0:03:57|
|35||Tony Gallopin (Fra) Ag2r la Mondiale||0:05:26|
|36||Jonathan Lastra Martinez (Spa) Caja Rural-seguros Rga||0:05:59|
|37||Oscar Rodriguez Garaicoechea (Spa) Euskadi Basque Country-murias|
|38||Floris De Tier (Bel) Team Jumbo-visma|
|39||Alexander Aranburu Deba (Spa) Caja Rural-seguros Rga|
|40||Mikkel Frølich Honoré (Den) Deceuninck-quick-step|
|41||Mikel Iturria Segurola (Spa) Euskadi Basque Country-murias|
|42||Lawrence Warbasse (USA) Ag2r la Mondiale|
|43||Jens Keukeleire (Bel) Lotto Soudal|
|44||Jan Bakelants (Bel) Team Sunweb|
|45||Dion Smith (NZl) Mitchelton-scott|
|46||Jaakko Hanninen (Fin) Ag2r la Mondiale|
|47||Davide Villella (Ita) Astana pro Team|
|48||Stéphane Rossetto (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits||0:06:31|
|49||Rui Costa (Por) Uae Team Emirates|
|50||Aurélien Paret Peintre (Fra) Ag2r la Mondiale|
|51||Jay Mc Carthy (Aus) Bora-hansgrohe|
|52||Kenny Elissonde (Fra) Team Ineos|
|53||Jan Polanc (Slo) Uae Team Emirates|
|54||Joseph Rosskopf (USA) Ccc Team|
|55||Ruben Guerreiro (Por) Team Katusha Alpecin||0:06:53|
|56||Riccardo Zoidl (Aut) Ccc Team||0:07:54|
|57||Cristian Rodriguez Martin (Spa) Caja Rural-seguros Rga||0:08:27|
|58||Louis Meintjes (RSA) Team Dimension Data||0:08:57|
|59||Nicolas Roche (Irl) Team Sunweb|
|60||Gonzalo Serrano Rodriguez (Spa) Caja Rural-seguros Rga||0:09:22|
|61||Antonio Pedrero (Spa) Movistar Team||0:09:56|
|62||Andrey Amador (CRc) Movistar Team|
|63||Nans Peters (Fra) Ag2r la Mondiale||0:10:23|
|64||Victor De la Parte (Spa) Ccc Team|
|65||Niklas Eg (Den) Trek-segafredo|
|66||Johannes Fröhlinger (Ger) Team Sunweb||0:11:23|
|67||Willem Jakobus Smit (RSA) Team Katusha Alpecin|
|68||François Bidard (Fra) Ag2r la Mondiale|
|69||Fernando Barcelo Aragon (Spa) Euskadi Basque Country-murias||0:12:08|
|70||Garikoitz Bravo Oiarbide (Spa) Euskadi Basque Country-murias|
|71||Aleksandr Riabushenko (Blr) Uae Team Emirates||0:12:46|
|72||Cyril Barthe (Fra) Euskadi Basque Country-murias||0:14:13|
|73||Jonas Gregaard Wilsly (Den) Astana pro Team|
|74||Damien Touze (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits||0:15:08|
|75||Markel Irizar Aramburu (Spa) Trek-segafredo||0:15:11|
|76||Jetse Bol (Ned) Burgos-bh||0:15:17|
|77||Diego Rubio Hernandez (Spa) Burgos-bh|
|78||Koen Bouwman (Ned) Team Jumbo-visma||0:16:29|
|79||Jacques Willem Janse van Rensburg (RSA) Team Dimension Data||0:16:58|
|80||Joel Nicolau Beltran (Spa) Caja Rural-seguros Rga||0:17:14|
|81||Nicolas Sessler (Bra) Burgos-bh|
Growing up in Missoula, Montana, Pat competed in his first bike race in 1985 at Flathead Lake before studying English and journalism at the University of Oregon. He has covered North American cycling extensively since 2009, as well as racing and teams in Europe and South America. Pat currently lives in the US outside of Portland, Oregon.
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