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Gilbert wins De Brabantse Pijl

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The Brabantse Pijl podium: Bjorn Leukemans, Philippe Gilbert and Anthony Geslin

The Brabantse Pijl podium: Bjorn Leukemans, Philippe Gilbert and Anthony Geslin
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Luis León Sánchez (Rabobank) rolls in after a hard day.

Luis León Sánchez (Rabobank) rolls in after a hard day.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Carlos Barredo (Rabobank)

Carlos Barredo (Rabobank)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) on the podium at Brabantse Pijl

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) on the podium at Brabantse Pijl
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Anthony Geslin (FDJ) claims the final podium spot.

Anthony Geslin (FDJ) claims the final podium spot.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Anthony Geslin topped Johnny Hoogerland for third.

Anthony Geslin topped Johnny Hoogerland for third.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Bram Tankink (Rabobank) and Johnny Hoogerland (Vacansoleil DCM)

Bram Tankink (Rabobank) and Johnny Hoogerland (Vacansoleil DCM)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Bjorn Leukemans leads Philippe Gilbert in the finale.

Bjorn Leukemans leads Philippe Gilbert in the finale.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Leukemans and Gilbert were the strongest two in the race

Leukemans and Gilbert were the strongest two in the race
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Carlos Barredo (Rabobank)

Carlos Barredo (Rabobank)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Oscar Freire (Rabobank) shadows Stijn Devolder (Vacansoleil DCM)

Oscar Freire (Rabobank) shadows Stijn Devolder (Vacansoleil DCM)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Greg Van Avermaet (BMC)

Greg Van Avermaet (BMC)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Luis Leon Sanchez (Rabobank)

Luis Leon Sanchez (Rabobank)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Devolder leads the peloton across the line in the closing circuit.

Devolder leads the peloton across the line in the closing circuit.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Philippe Gilbert pushes the pace in the breakaway.

Philippe Gilbert pushes the pace in the breakaway.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Champagne!

Champagne!
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Caleb Fairly (HTC-Highroad)

Caleb Fairly (HTC-Highroad)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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The 2011 UnitedHealthcare team at Brabantse Pijl

The 2011 UnitedHealthcare team at Brabantse Pijl
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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UnitedHealthcare gets ready

UnitedHealthcare gets ready
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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David Veillieux (Europcar) at the start

David Veillieux (Europcar) at the start
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) with his big trophy

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) with his big trophy
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Anthony Geslin (FDJ)

Anthony Geslin (FDJ)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Bjorn Leukemans on the podium, still sporting some Paris-Roubaix road rash

Bjorn Leukemans on the podium, still sporting some Paris-Roubaix road rash
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Podium kisses for Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto)

Podium kisses for Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto)

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) happy on the Brabantse Pijl podium

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) happy on the Brabantse Pijl podium
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto)

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) outsprinted Bjorn Leukemans (Vacansoleil DCM) quite handily.

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) outsprinted Bjorn Leukemans (Vacansoleil DCM) quite handily.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
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Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) showed he is on fine form ahead of the Amstel Gold Race

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) showed he is on fine form ahead of the Amstel Gold Race
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
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Jan Tratnik (Quick Step)

Jan Tratnik (Quick Step)
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
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Thomas De Gendt (Vacansoleil DCM) attacked from the gun

Thomas De Gendt (Vacansoleil DCM) attacked from the gun
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
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Stijn Devolder (Vacansoleil) shows his prowess on the cobbles

Stijn Devolder (Vacansoleil) shows his prowess on the cobbles
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
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Gilbert closed the gap to the leaders on the Hertstraat

Gilbert closed the gap to the leaders on the Hertstraat
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
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Philippe Gilbert takes the smoother part of the cobbled road.

Philippe Gilbert takes the smoother part of the cobbled road.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
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Kenny De Haes (Omega Pharma-Lotto) was part of a lead group that was caught

Kenny De Haes (Omega Pharma-Lotto) was part of a lead group that was caught
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
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Jurgen Van de Walle (Omega Pharma-Lotto) gest a push after a wheel change.

Jurgen Van de Walle (Omega Pharma-Lotto) gest a push after a wheel change.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
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Riders roll out through Leuven for the 51st edition of Brabantse Pijl

Riders roll out through Leuven for the 51st edition of Brabantse Pijl
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
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The riders enjoyed a splendid morning for the start in Leuven.

The riders enjoyed a splendid morning for the start in Leuven.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
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Philippe Gilbert gets the job done in Overijse.

Philippe Gilbert gets the job done in Overijse.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
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Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) takes the win in Brabantse Pijl

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) takes the win in Brabantse Pijl
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
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Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) out-sprinted Leukemans to win Brabantse Pijl

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) out-sprinted Leukemans to win Brabantse Pijl
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) tops Björn Leukemans (Vacansoleil DCM)

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) tops Björn Leukemans (Vacansoleil DCM)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)

Philippe Gilbert (Omega-Pharma Lotto) won Brabantse Pijl in a two-man sprint for the line against Bjorn Leukemans (Vacansoleil-DCM).

The two Belgians broke clear of a break containing on the final lap along the finishing circuit, dropping Johnny Hoogerland (Vacansoleil-DCM), Bram Tankink (Rabobank), Romain Zingle (Cofidis), Dries Devenyns (Quick-Step) and former winner Anthony Geslin (FDJ) and stayed away until the finish, where on the long uphill drag up to the line Gilbert showed his class and his Ardennes form with a powerful sprint.

No early breakaway

While last year's winner Sébastien Rosseler (Radioshack) didn't start, the runner-up from 2010, Thomas De Gendt, showed he wasn't planning to use this day as a training ride. De Gendt attacked right after leaving the historical market when the flag went down. The Belgian, who performed excellently in this year's Paris-Nice, didn't make any distance though. For an hour a group with Kenny De Haes (Omega Pharma-Lotto), Julien El Fares (Cofidis), Marco Marcato (Vacansoleil-DCM), Thomas Bonnin (Skil-Shimano) and Andrea Pasqualon (Colnago-CSF Inox) made a gap of three minutes but eventually they were brought back by the Rabobank team.

Vacansoleil-DCM starts the finale

On the Ijskelderlaan – the tenth climb of the day - Vacansoleil-DCM closed the final metres on the leaders and on the steep Schavel with 65km to go Johnny Hoogerland attacked. Right after the first passage of the finish line, while climbing the Hagaard, five men closed the gap to Hoogerland: Bram Tankink (Rabobank), Romain Zingle (Cofidis), Dries Devenyns (Quick-Step), Bjorn Leukemans (Vacansoleil-DCM) and former winner Anthony Geslin (FDJ). Vacansoleil and the Quick-Step team put the hand brake on the peloton and the gap to the six quickly ran up to twenty seconds.

At the bottom of the next climb, the cobbled Hertstraat, Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) powered away from the peloton. After the first part on the cobbles he hopped on the pavement and continued his effort. Gilbert closed the gap to the leaders in no time. With another team present in front of the peloton it was clear the breakaway had every chance of going the distance. On the second lap of the finishing circuit they had 50 seconds on the peloton and one lap later the gap was up to 1:15.

The peloton got restless during the third of five laps and eventually a counter-attack from Jerome Pineau (Quick-Step) and Gianni Meersman (FDJ) got away. Greg Van Avermaet (BMC) fell short in his effort to join the duo and from that moment on it was over for the peloton.

Leukemans and Gilbert attack the lead group

When starting the final lap the chasing duo were trailing the seven leaders by 1:11. But just before hitting the final lap Leukemans attacked the lead group and the Belgian was joined by compatriot Gilbert. Behind them Zingle was blown away and the four others were left chasing the two strongest men in the race.

The two Belgians survived until the line with Gilbert taking his first win on home soil since last July.

Full Results

#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto4:40:38
2Björn Leukemans (Bel) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
3Anthony Geslin (Fra) FDJ0:01:03
4Johnny Hoogerland (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
5Bram Tankink (Ned) Rabobank Cycling Team0:01:04
6Dries Devenyns (Bel) Quickstep Cycling Team0:01:18
7Romain Zingle (Bel) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne0:01:23
8Gianni Meersman (Bel) FDJ0:01:39
9Jérôme Pineau (Fra) Quickstep Cycling Team0:01:41
10Simon Geschke (Ger) Skil - Shimano0:02:19
11Oscar Freire Gomez (Spa) Rabobank Cycling Team
12Ben Hermans (Bel) Team RadioShack
13Bert De Waele (Bel) Landbouwkrediet
14Paul Martens (Ger) Rabobank Cycling Team
15Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team
16Kristof Vandewalle (Bel) Quickstep Cycling Team
17Wesley Sulzberger (Aus) FDJ
18Carlos Barredo Llamazales (Spa) Rabobank Cycling Team
19Jan Ghyselinck (Bel) HTC-Highroad
20Johan Coenen (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator
21Maxime Vantomme (Bel) Katusha Team
22Davy Commeyne (Bel) Landbouwkrediet
23Frantisek Rabon (Cze) HTC-Highroad
24Ramunas Navardauskas (Ltu) Team Garmin-Cervelo
25Benoît Vaugrenard (Fra) FDJ
26Jelle Vanendert (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto
27Michel Kreder (Ned) Team Garmin-Cervelo
28Rob Ruijgh (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
29Peter Stetina (USA) Team Garmin-Cervelo
30Sander Armee (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator
31Craig Lewis (USA) HTC-Highroad
32Jesus Rosendo Prado (Spa) Andalucia Caja Granada
33Luca Mazzanti (Ita) Farnese Vini - Neri Sottoli
34Johannes Fröhlinger (Ger) Skil - Shimano
35Luis Leon Sanchez Gil (Spa) Rabobank Cycling Team
36Julien Vermote (Bel) Quickstep Cycling Team
37Stijn Devolder (Bel) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
38Alessandro Donati (Ita) Acqua & Sapone
39Philip Deignan (Irl) Team RadioShack
40Francesco Failli (Ita) Farnese Vini - Neri Sottoli
41Julien El Fares (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne
42Matthieu Sprick (Fra) Skil - Shimano
43Geert Verheyen (Bel) Landbouwkrediet
44Wout Poels (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
45Jérôme Baugnies (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator
46Marco Marcato (Ita) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
47Sébastien Delfosse (Bel) Landbouwkrediet
48Martin Kohler (Swi) BMC Racing Team0:02:36
49Pablo Lechuga Rodriguez (Spa) Andalucia Caja Granada
50Nico Sijmens (Bel) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne
51Gert Dockx (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto
52Pieter Serry (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator
53Gabriel Rasch (Nor) Team Garmin-Cervelo
54Christophe Kern (Fra) Team Europcar0:02:44
55Pieter Jacobs (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator
56Thomas Degand (Bel) Veranda's Willems - Accent
57Ryan Anderson (Can) Team Spidertech Powered By C100:02:52
58Jose Vicente Toribio Alcolea (Spa) Andalucia Caja Granada
59Bert Scheirlinckx (Bel) Landbouwkrediet0:03:00
60Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto0:03:02
61Francis Mourey (Fra) FDJ0:03:23
62Murilo Antonio Fischer (Bra) Team Garmin-Cervelo0:03:31
63Pier Paolo De Negri (Ita) Farnese Vini - Neri Sottoli0:03:42
64Jürgen Van Goolen (Bel) Veranda's Willems - Accent
65Frederik Veuchelen (Bel) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team0:04:09
66Sébastien Turgot (Fra) Team Europcar0:04:42
67Ronan McLaughlin (Irl) An Post - Sean Kelly0:06:08
68Francesco Di Paolo (Ita) Acqua & Sapone0:06:09

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