Skip to main content

The sun shines for the Swiss champion in Flanders

Image 1 of 91

Fabian Cancellara

Fabian Cancellara
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
Image 2 of 91

Fabian Cancellara (Saxo Bank) celebrates his third career Monument.

Fabian Cancellara (Saxo Bank) celebrates his third career Monument.
(Image credit: AFP Photo)
Image 3 of 91

Tom Boonen (Quick Step) tries to limit his gap to Cancellara on the Kapelmuur.

Tom Boonen (Quick Step) tries to limit his gap to Cancellara on the Kapelmuur.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
Image 4 of 91

Fabian Cancellara (Saxo Bank) gets enthusiastic encouragement on the Kapelmuur.

Fabian Cancellara (Saxo Bank) gets enthusiastic encouragement on the Kapelmuur.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
Image 5 of 91

Tom Boonen (Quick Step) nears the summit of the Kapelmuur.

Tom Boonen (Quick Step) nears the summit of the Kapelmuur.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
Image 6 of 91

Daniel Oss (Liquigas) after the Tour of Flanders.

Daniel Oss (Liquigas) after the Tour of Flanders.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 7 of 91

Manuel Quinziato (Liquigas) reflects on his Ronde.

Manuel Quinziato (Liquigas) reflects on his Ronde.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 8 of 91

David Millar and Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Transitions) exhausted after the race.

David Millar and Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Transitions) exhausted after the race.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 9 of 91

Farrar gets a refreshment.

Farrar gets a refreshment.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 10 of 91

Mikhail Ignative (Katusha) models the new Lazer helmet cover.

Mikhail Ignative (Katusha) models the new Lazer helmet cover.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 11 of 91

Lance Armstrong (Radioshack)

Lance Armstrong (Radioshack)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 12 of 91

George Hincapie (BMC) in the group with Boonen.

George Hincapie (BMC) in the group with Boonen.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 13 of 91

The Sky team work well together but used their bullets too early.

The Sky team work well together but used their bullets too early.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 14 of 91

Mark Cavendish (HTC-Columbia) did not finish the race.

Mark Cavendish (HTC-Columbia) did not finish the race.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 15 of 91

Kurt Alse Arvesen (Sky) is always easy to spot.

Kurt Alse Arvesen (Sky) is always easy to spot.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 16 of 91

Armstrong on the climb.

Armstrong on the climb.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 17 of 91

Marcus Burghardt (BMC)

Marcus Burghardt (BMC)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 18 of 91

Manuel Quinziato (Liquigas)

Manuel Quinziato (Liquigas)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 19 of 91

Nick Nuyens (Rabobank)

Nick Nuyens (Rabobank)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 20 of 91

Alessandro Ballan (BMC)

Alessandro Ballan (BMC)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 21 of 91

Leif Hoste (Omega Pharma-Lotto)

Leif Hoste (Omega Pharma-Lotto)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 22 of 91

George Hincapie (BMC) riding the Ronde van Vlaanderen.

George Hincapie (BMC) riding the Ronde van Vlaanderen.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 23 of 91

Cancellara and Boonen cooperated well between the Molenberg and the Kapelmuur.

Cancellara and Boonen cooperated well between the Molenberg and the Kapelmuur.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
Image 24 of 91

Juan Antonio Flecha (Sky)

Juan Antonio Flecha (Sky)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 25 of 91

Mikhail Ignatiev in the breakaway.

Mikhail Ignatiev in the breakaway.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 26 of 91

The Footon Servetto riders had a color inverted kit for Belgium.

The Footon Servetto riders had a color inverted kit for Belgium.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 27 of 91

David Millar (Garmin-Transitions) was joined by Gilbert and Leukemans.

David Millar (Garmin-Transitions) was joined by Gilbert and Leukemans.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 28 of 91

Cancellara and Boonen worked harder when they heard Millar had company.

Cancellara and Boonen worked harder when they heard Millar had company.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 29 of 91

Leukemans, Gilbert and Millar chased together until Millar was dropped on the Muur.

Leukemans, Gilbert and Millar chased together until Millar was dropped on the Muur.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 30 of 91

Gilbert goes off in pursuit of Boonen and Cancellara.

Gilbert goes off in pursuit of Boonen and Cancellara.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 31 of 91

Tom Boonen had plenty of cameras following him as he chased Cancellara.

Tom Boonen had plenty of cameras following him as he chased Cancellara.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 32 of 91

Cancellara takes on the last climb en route to victory.

Cancellara takes on the last climb en route to victory.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 33 of 91

Lance Armstrong (Radioshack) in the Tour of Flanders.

Lance Armstrong (Radioshack) in the Tour of Flanders.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
Image 34 of 91

Fabian Cancellara rides away on the Molenberg.

Fabian Cancellara rides away on the Molenberg.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
Image 35 of 91

George Hincapie (BMC) looked strong in the race but missed the critical move.

George Hincapie (BMC) looked strong in the race but missed the critical move.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
Image 36 of 91

Bjorn Leukemans (Vacansoleil) leads Gilbert

Bjorn Leukemans (Vacansoleil) leads Gilbert
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
Image 37 of 91

Stijn Devolder (Quick Step) was a long way back.

Stijn Devolder (Quick Step) was a long way back.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
Image 38 of 91

Thor Hushovd (Cervelo)

Thor Hushovd (Cervelo)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 39 of 91

Lance Armstrong on the Kapelmuur.

Lance Armstrong on the Kapelmuur.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
Image 40 of 91

The rest of the bunch heads to the top of the Kapelmuur.

The rest of the bunch heads to the top of the Kapelmuur.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
Image 41 of 91

(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 42 of 91

The 2010 Ronde van Vlaanderen podium.

The 2010 Ronde van Vlaanderen podium.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 43 of 91

The Belgian flags dwarfed the tiny Swiss flag held by Cancellara.

The Belgian flags dwarfed the tiny Swiss flag held by Cancellara.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 44 of 91

Fabian Cancellara takes home this third major Classic.

Fabian Cancellara takes home this third major Classic.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 45 of 91

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) made a small salute for taking the final podium spot.

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) made a small salute for taking the final podium spot.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 46 of 91

Belgian champion Tom Boonen had to endure the long, futile chase after being distanced on the Kapelmuur.

Belgian champion Tom Boonen had to endure the long, futile chase after being distanced on the Kapelmuur.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 47 of 91

Bjorn Leukemans may not have made the podium, but it was a good result for Vacansoleil to get 4th.

Bjorn Leukemans may not have made the podium, but it was a good result for Vacansoleil to get 4th.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 48 of 91

Fabian Cancellara starts the attack on the Molenberg.

Fabian Cancellara starts the attack on the Molenberg.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 49 of 91

Stijn Devolder (Quick Step) never came close to taking his third Ronde.

Stijn Devolder (Quick Step) never came close to taking his third Ronde.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 50 of 91

(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 51 of 91

Boonen, Cancellara and Gilbert top the podium in Meerbeke.

Boonen, Cancellara and Gilbert top the podium in Meerbeke.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 52 of 91

Cancellara admires his newest trophy

Cancellara admires his newest trophy
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 53 of 91

Fabian Cancellara, winner of the 2010 Tour of Flanders.

Fabian Cancellara, winner of the 2010 Tour of Flanders.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 54 of 91

Tom Boonen managed a misty-eyed smile on the podium.

Tom Boonen managed a misty-eyed smile on the podium.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 55 of 91

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) seemed pleased to make the podium.

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) seemed pleased to make the podium.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 56 of 91

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) has his moment on the podium.

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) has his moment on the podium.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 57 of 91

David Millar and Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Transitions) discuss the race.

David Millar and Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Transitions) discuss the race.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 58 of 91

Alessandro Ballan (BMC) came in behind the bunch.

Alessandro Ballan (BMC) came in behind the bunch.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 59 of 91

The sprint for fifth place goes to Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Transitions)

The sprint for fifth place goes to Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Transitions)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 60 of 91

Fabian Cancellara holds up his trophy

Fabian Cancellara holds up his trophy
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 61 of 91

The 2010 Ronde van Vlaanderen podium

The 2010 Ronde van Vlaanderen podium
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 62 of 91

Fabian Cancellara, winner of the 2010 Tour of Flanders.

Fabian Cancellara, winner of the 2010 Tour of Flanders.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 63 of 91

Boonen congratulates Cancellara on a great race.

Boonen congratulates Cancellara on a great race.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 64 of 91

Fabian Cancellara (Saxo Bank) enjoyed a long victory salute.

Fabian Cancellara (Saxo Bank) enjoyed a long victory salute.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 65 of 91

Fabian Cancellara grabbed a Swiss flag from a specator.

Fabian Cancellara grabbed a Swiss flag from a specator.
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
Image 66 of 91

Fabian Cancellara powers out of the turn on the Kapelmuur.

Fabian Cancellara powers out of the turn on the Kapelmuur.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
Image 67 of 91

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) leads Bjorn Leukemans (Vacansoleil) in Geraardsbergen.

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) leads Bjorn Leukemans (Vacansoleil) in Geraardsbergen.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
Image 68 of 91

Fabian Cancellara (Saxo Bank) celebrates as he crosses the line.

Fabian Cancellara (Saxo Bank) celebrates as he crosses the line.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
Image 69 of 91

The podium of the 2010 Tour of Flanders: Tom Boonen (2nd) Fabian Cancellara (1st) and Philippe Gilbert (3rd)

The podium of the 2010 Tour of Flanders: Tom Boonen (2nd) Fabian Cancellara (1st) and Philippe Gilbert (3rd)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 70 of 91

Bjorn Leukemans (Vacansoleil) ceded the podium spot.

Bjorn Leukemans (Vacansoleil) ceded the podium spot.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 71 of 91

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) rolls in for third.

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) rolls in for third.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 72 of 91

The final podium of the 2010 Tour of Flanders.

The final podium of the 2010 Tour of Flanders.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 73 of 91

Philippe Gilbert heads to a podium placing.

Philippe Gilbert heads to a podium placing.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 74 of 91

The two chasers distanced David Millar on the Muur.

The two chasers distanced David Millar on the Muur.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 75 of 91

Gilbert leads Leukemans to the top of the Kapelmuur.

Gilbert leads Leukemans to the top of the Kapelmuur.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 76 of 91

The Flemish and Belgian flags wave wildly for Tom Boonen.

The Flemish and Belgian flags wave wildly for Tom Boonen.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 77 of 91

Tom Boonen (Quick Step)

Tom Boonen (Quick Step)
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 78 of 91

Tom Boonen (Quick Step) could not match Cancellara in the finale.

Tom Boonen (Quick Step) could not match Cancellara in the finale.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 79 of 91

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) left Leukemans behind in the final 500m.

Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) left Leukemans behind in the final 500m.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 80 of 91

Tom Boonen (Quick Step) suffering on the slopes of the Mur de Grammont.

Tom Boonen (Quick Step) suffering on the slopes of the Mur de Grammont.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
Image 81 of 91

Tom Boonen (Quick Step) in agony as he tries desperately to close the gap to Cancellara.

Tom Boonen (Quick Step) in agony as he tries desperately to close the gap to Cancellara.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 82 of 91

Boonen rides to the top of the Kapelmuur about 10 seconds behind Cancellara.

Boonen rides to the top of the Kapelmuur about 10 seconds behind Cancellara.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 83 of 91

Here comes Boonen and the gap has opened wide.

Here comes Boonen and the gap has opened wide.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 84 of 91

Fabian Cancellara (Saxo Bank) powers to the top of the Kapelmuur.

Fabian Cancellara (Saxo Bank) powers to the top of the Kapelmuur.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 85 of 91

Cancellara gave it everything on the Kapelmuur and distanced Boonen.

Cancellara gave it everything on the Kapelmuur and distanced Boonen.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 86 of 91

Cancellara's face shows the strain of his efforts on the slopes of Geraardsbergen.

Cancellara's face shows the strain of his efforts on the slopes of Geraardsbergen.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 87 of 91

Fans get their first glimpse of the race leader, Fabian Cancellara.

Fans get their first glimpse of the race leader, Fabian Cancellara.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 88 of 91

Fabian Cancellara (Saxo Bank) rides to his third career Monument win.

Fabian Cancellara (Saxo Bank) rides to his third career Monument win.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 89 of 91

Cancellara salutes the skies

Cancellara salutes the skies
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 90 of 91

A Swiss flag for the Swiss champion in the finish of Flanders.

A Swiss flag for the Swiss champion in the finish of Flanders.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
Image 91 of 91

A fan handed Cancellara a Swiss flag in the home stretch.

A fan handed Cancellara a Swiss flag in the home stretch.
(Image credit: AFP Photo)

The skies may have been dark everywhere else in Belgium, but a ray of light shone on Fabian Cancellara (Saxo Bank) as he rode to the victory in the Tour of Flanders. The world time trial champion showed his huge power advantage by dropping Tom Boonen (Quick Step) on the Kapelmuur climb and then riding away to glory with more than a minute's lead by the line.

Flashing his lucky charm for the camera as he pulled into Meerbeke en route to his the third Monument victory, the Swiss champion, who won Paris-Roubaix in 2006 and Milan-San Remo in 2008, had ample time to celebrate with team director Bjarne Riis and grab a Swiss flag from the fans to wave as he crossed the line.

Boonen and Cancellara broke free of the lead group on the Molenberg more than 40km before the finish, and thanks to a strong tailwind were able to distance a group of chasers which was whittled down to Philippe Gilbert (Omega Pharma-Lotto) and Bjorn Leukemans (Vacansoleil) by the top of the Kapelmuur.

Cancellara chose the steepest part of the climb to put in a bid to drop Boonen, and the effort was a success. By the famous chapel at the top of the climb in Geraardsbergen, the Swiss had a dozen seconds on the fading Belgian champion. With his world-renowned time trialing abilities, Cancellara steadily added time to his lead in the final 20km. Boonen came across the line, head bowed, in second place 1:14 later. Gilbert easily out-sprinted Leukemans to claim the final podium spot, while not far behind Americans Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Transitions) and George Hincapie (BMC) were fastest in the bunch sprint.

"It wasn't easy knowing I was the favourite but that was more of a weight on my shoulders in the build-up to the race rather than today," Cancellara said immediately after winning.

"I suppose it was a perfect race. Even my attacks were perfectly timed. Going on the Molenberg was the right moment and then I had to try on the Muur because that's where the legend and history of this race are made. When I realised I'd dropped Boonen it was like having wings on my feet and kept going all the way to the finish."

"Winning big races like this isn't easy and I have to thank my family and my team for the support they always give me. My next objective? There are still two monuments I haven't won…."

Boonen admitted that he was up against a tough rival today, but said things will be different next Sunday in Paris-Roubaix.

"Battling up against Fabian as a team is ideal. I'm already happy that I was able to keep up with him. I don't fear him. I've got a simple plan. If he goes I have to stay with him. You can't give him a few meters or he's gone," Boonen said after the race.

"Cancellara and I started co-operating without saying a word. It was a beautiful race. I liked the new course a lot. In the past riders were able to come back and attack, but now that was impossible. The Molenberg didn't make the difference. It's the part just before and after the Molenberg that makes it very hard."

It was Boonen's third runner-up finish after Milan-San Remo and the E3 Prijs, but the Belgian champion had a positive view on his latest result. "It makes me the best regular rider of the peloton."

A fast start from Brugge

The first attacks of the race were launched right after leaving Brugge. The first five riders to get a gap over the peloton were Michele Merlo, Nicolas Rousseau, Joost van Leijen, Floris Goesinnen, and veteran José Vicente Garcia Acosta. When arriving at the coast after half an hour of racing the five had a gap of one minute over the peloton. Three riders then made a counter-attack, with Olivier Bonnaire, Mikhail Ignatiev and natural attacker David Boucher setting off in pursuit of the five.

After sixty kilometres of early racing the three chasers bridged up with the leaders, creating an eight-man leader's group. The peloton let them go and were soon thirteen minutes behind them, with Quick Step, Team Sky, Saxo Bank and Astana all helped controlled the gap.

On the first climb called Den Ast, the gap had dropped below the ten minutes. The speed increased in the peloton as the roads were getting more technical and narrow. Several crashes occurred and ruined several riders' chances, although no favourites were included. However Lars Boom and Sergey Ivanov were caught behind and had to work hard to get back to the peloton, using a lot of energy to get back near the front of the peloton where Saxo Bank was driving the pace.

When the race reached the Kluisberg, the second climb of the day, the huge gap had fallen to just four minutes and the race between the big teams was on.

Saxo Bank controlled the peloton, with eight men on front of the peloton. Saxo Bank put the hammer down as the race headed towards the first real testing climb, the Oude Kwaremont. Again, the peloton split apart, with about hundred riders were in the first peloton that trailed the leaders by two minutes.

After the Oude Kwaremont there were only four leaders left from the early break: Van Leijen, Garcia Acosta, Goesinnen and Ignatiev. In the peloton Stuart O'Grady led the group at a steady pace over the 2200 metre-long cobbled stretch. Once again, the peloton reduced in number, with Stijn Devolder being the most important absentee.

The first selection on the Paterberg

On the Paterberg climb, with 80km to go, Matti Breschel upped the pace and this time the favorites had to move. Only nine men survived this selection, indicating what would happen later in the race. Breschel, Fabian Cancellara, Tom Boonen, Lars Boom, Juan Antonio Flecha, George Hincapie, Steve Chainel, Leif Hoste and Thor Hushovd were all there.

The rest of the peloton wasn't too far away and got back just before tackling the Koppenberg but then the pace went up yet again. Breschel and Boonen impressed on the famous cobbled climb. Cyclo-cross rider Chainel had to stop and put his foot down, blocking other riders and forcing him to run up the climb on the 22% part of the Koppenberg.

Up front Garcia Acosta got dropped and the three remaining leaders had about forty seconds on a leading peloton of about forty riders that also including Lance Armstrong. There was no organisation in the peloton and on climb eight, the Taaienberg, several riders managed to bridge back up to the first peloton, including Devolder and Sergey Ivanov. This was the quiet before the decisive attacks.

On the next climb, the Eikenberg, 60km kilometres from the finish, Team Sky closed the gap on Ignatiev, Goesinnen and Van Leijen. Behind the Saxo Bank team had a scare as both Cancellara and Breschel were forced to switch bikes. For Breschel the mechanic couldn't seem to find the right bike and the Danish champion lost a lot of time and was forced to chase amongst the long line of team cars. The problem definitely compromised his race.

The door swings open on the Molenberg

Due to the hesitations in the peloton Mathew Hayman sneaked away and on the cobbles and for a moment, it was Armstrong who led the chase. Then before the important Molenberg climb, with 45km to go, Bernhard Eisel, Daniel Oss, Matthew Lloyd and Maarten Wynants carved out a small gap but they were no match when Cancellara and Boonen blasted past them near the summit. It was the key moment of the race.

Boonen and Cancellara quickly opened a gap of fifteen seconds on a group with Flecha, who narrowly missed the attack. On a crosswind section Philippe Gilbert blew the chase group apart but was marked by Bjorn Leukemans, Hoogerland, Chainel, Hoste, David Millar, Sebastian Langeveld, Hincapie, Iglinsky, Flecha and the Quick Step duo Wynants and Devolder who neutralized the attacks.

Meanwhile Boonen and Cancellara were sharing pulls in front, opening a gap of half a minute. Millar attacked the chase group after climbing the Leberg but the Brit didn't get any closer on the leading duo. On the Berendries climb he received help from Gilbert and Leukemans who had left the rest of the original chase group behind but even the trio failed to get close to Boonen and Cancellara.

With less than thirty kilometers the race seemed to be between Boonen and Cancellara, with Millar, Gilbert and Leukemans at fifty seconds, and a nine-man chasing group with Devolder, Wynants, Langeveld, Iglinsky, Flecha, Chainel, Hoogerland, Hincapie and Hoste at little over a minute. On the thirteenth climb, the Tenbosse, the leaders had 54 seconds on the three chasers and 1'20" on the other chasers.

A moment in time and one good line...

At the foot of the famous Muur in Geraardsbergen the gap for the leaders was down to 43" but everything seemed to be under control for the Belgian and Swiss national champion. The Kapelmuur would see the shown down between the two.

Both look strong but on the last section of the Muur, Cancellara had something extra - a bit more power and a slightly better line over the cobbles - and he surged away from Boonen. Over the top of the Kapelmuur, Cancellara already had a gap over ten seconds and Boonen seemed to have thrown in the towel.

He tried to chase but lost time all the way to the finish. Cancellara used his time trialing skills to open a huge margin and then began celebrating as soon as he entered the long finishing straight in Merebeke. He showed a special good luck charm he had kept in his pocket and celebrated with Saxo Bank team Bjarne Riis manager in the team car. He then collected a Swiss flag before slowly rolling over the line in celebration. Despite racing for 262km and over six hours, he hardly seemed out of breath.

Boonen also rolled home, just over a minute behind, while Philippe Gilbert beat Bjorn Leukemans to take third place.

The USA's Tyler Farrar won the sprint for fifth, with George Hincapie sixth.

Full Results
1Fabian Cancellara (Swi) Team Saxo Bank6:25:56
2Tom Boonen (Bel) Quick Step0:01:15
3Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto0:02:11
4Bjorn Leukemans (Bel) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team0:02:15
5Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin - Transitions0:02:35
6George Hincapie (USA) BMC Racing Team
7Roger Hammond (GBr) Cervelo Test Team
8Maxim Iglinsky (Kaz) Astana
9Danilo Hondo (Ger) Lampre-Farnese Vini
10William Bonnet (Fra) Bbox Bouygues Telecom
11Johnny Hoogerland (Ned) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team
12Stijn Vandenbergh (Bel) Team Katusha
13Mathew Hayman (Aus) Sky Professional Cycling Team
14Lloyd Mondory (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
15Matti Breschel (Den) Team Saxo Bank
16Bernhard Eisel (Aut) Team HTC - Columbia
17Steve Chainel (Fra) Bbox Bouygues Telecom
18Frédéric Guesdon (Fra) Française Des Jeux
19Maarten Wynants (Bel) Quick Step
20Marcus Burghardt (Ger) BMC Racing Team
21Roy Sentjens (Bel) Team Milram
22Sebastian Langeveld (Ned) Rabobank
23Marcel Sieberg (Ger) Team HTC - Columbia
24Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Quick Step
25Stijn Devolder (Bel) Quick Step
26Sébastien Hinault (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
27Lance Armstrong (USA) Team Radioshack
28Daniel Oss (Ita) Liquigas-Doimo
29Leif Hoste (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto
30Simon Spilak (Slo) Lampre-Farnese Vini
31Serguei Ivanov (Rus) Team Katusha
32David Millar (GBr) Garmin - Transitions
33Geraint Thomas (GBr) Sky Professional Cycling Team
34Juan Antonio Flecha Giannoni (Spa) Sky Professional Cycling Team
35Alessandro Ballan (Ita) BMC Racing Team0:02:48
36Koen De Kort (Ned) Skil - Shimano0:05:13
37Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne
38Dimitri Muravyev (Kaz) Team Radioshack
39Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto
40Bert Scheirlinckx (Bel) Landbouwkrediet
41Staf Scheirlinckx (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto
42Dominique Rollin (Can) Cervelo Test Team
43Fabio Sabatini (Ita) Liquigas-Doimo
44Alexandre Pichot (Fra) Bbox Bouygues Telecom
45Niki Terpstra (Ned) Team Milram
46Grégory Rast (Swi) Team Radioshack
47Frederik Willems (Bel) Liquigas-Doimo
48Manuel Quinziato (Ita) Liquigas-Doimo
49Maarten Tjallingii (Ned) Rabobank
50Mikhail Ignatiev (Rus) Team Katusha
51Matthieu Ladagnous (Fra) Française Des Jeux
52Carlos Barredo Llamazales (Spa) Quick Step
53Kurt Asle Arvesen (Nor) Sky Professional Cycling Team
54Karsten Kroon (Ned) BMC Racing Team
55Johan Vansummeren (Bel) Garmin - Transitions
56Daniel Lloyd (GBr) Cervelo Test Team
57Thor Hushovd (Nor) Cervelo Test Team
58Thomas Voeckler (Fra) Bbox Bouygues Telecom0:06:58
59Koen Barbe (Bel) Landbouwkrediet0:10:33
60Bobbie Traksel (Ned) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team
61Michael Schär (Swi) BMC Racing Team
62Sep Vanmarcke (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator
63Matteo Tosatto (Ita) Quick Step0:13:20
64Mirko Selvaggi (Ita) Astana
65Javier Aramendia Lorente (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi
66Allan Davis (Aus) Astana
67Andriy Grivko (Ukr) Astana
68Vicente Reynes Mimo (Spa) Team HTC - Columbia
69Floris Goesinnen (Ned) Skil - Shimano
70Marco Marcato (Ita) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team
71Mauro Da Dalto (Ita) Lampre-Farnese Vini
72Frédéric Amorison (Bel) Landbouwkrediet
73Tiziano Dall'antonia (Ita) Liquigas-Doimo
74Lars Ytting Bak (Den) Team HTC - Columbia
75Hayden Roulston (NZl) Team HTC - Columbia
76Yoann Offredo (Fra) Française Des Jeux
77Lars Boom (Ned) Rabobank
78Michael Barry (Can) Sky Professional Cycling Team
79Sébastien Turgot (Fra) Bbox Bouygues Telecom
80Kevin De Weert (Bel) Quick Step
81Geoffroy Lequatre (Fra) Team Radioshack
82Tom Veelers (Ned) Skil - Shimano
83Roy Curvers (Ned) Skil - Shimano
84Ian Stannard (GBr) Sky Professional Cycling Team
85Gustav Larsson (Swe) Team Saxo Bank
86Joost Posthuma (Ned) Rabobank
87Jurgen Roelandts (Bel) Omega Pharma-Lotto
88Nikolay Trusov (Rus) Team Katusha
89Christopher Sutton (Aus) Sky Professional Cycling Team
90Martijn Maaskant (Ned) Garmin - Transitions
91Matthew Harley Goss (Aus) Team HTC - Columbia
92Kasper Klostergaard Larsen (Den) Team Saxo Bank
93Lieuwe Westra (Ned) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team
94Frank Hoj (Den) Team Saxo Bank
95Joost Van Leijen (Ned) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team
DNFKevin Hulsmans (Bel) Quick Step
DNFJulien Berard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
DNFBen Gastauer (Lux) AG2R La Mondiale
DNFKristof Goddaert (Bel) AG2R La Mondiale
DNFAnthony Ravard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
DNFNicolas Rousseau (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
DNFScott Davis (Aus) Astana
DNFValeriy Dmitriyev (Kaz) Astana
DNFEnrico Gasparotto (Ita) Astana
DNFValentin Iglinskiy (Kaz) Astana
DNFLuis Pasamontes Rodriguez (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne
DNFArnaud Coyot (Fra) Caisse d'Epargne
DNFMathieu Drujon (Fra) Caisse d'Epargne
DNFImanol Erviti (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne
DNFRui Alberto Faria Da Costa (Por) Caisse d'Epargne
DNFJosé Ivan Gutierrez Palacios (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne
DNFJosé Vicente Garcia Acosta (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne
DNFAndres Sergio De Lis (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi
DNFJonathan Castroviejo Nicolas (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi
DNFAitor Galdos Alonso (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi
DNFInaki Isasi Flores (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi
DNFGorka Izagirre Insausti (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi
DNFRomain Sicard (Fra) Euskaltel - Euskadi
DNFPablo Urtasun Perez (Spa) Euskaltel - Euskadi
DNFFabio Felline (Ita) Footon-Servetto
DNFErmanno Capelli (Ita) Footon-Servetto
DNFManuel Antonio Leal Cardoso (Por) Footon-Servetto
DNFVidal Celis Zabala (Spa) Footon-Servetto
DNFThomas Patrick Faiers (GBr) Footon-Servetto
DNFJohnnie Walker (Aus) Footon-Servetto
DNFMichele Merlo (Ita) Footon-Servetto
DNFDavid Gutierrez (Spa) Footon-Servetto
DNFOlivier Bonnaire (Fra) Française Des Jeux
DNFSébastien Chavanel (Fra) Française Des Jeux
DNFMikael Cherel (Fra) Française Des Jeux
DNFAnthony Geslin (Fra) Française Des Jeux
DNFYauheni Hutarovich (Blr) Française Des Jeux
DNFAlfredo Balloni (Ita) Lampre-Farnese Vini
DNFMarcin Sapa (Pol) Lampre-Farnese Vini
DNFVitaliy Buts (Ukr) Lampre-Farnese Vini
DNFMirco Lorenzetto (Ita) Lampre-Farnese Vini
DNFDaniele Bennati (Ita) Liquigas-Doimo
DNFJacopo Guarnieri (Ita) Liquigas-Doimo
DNFAliaksandr Kuschynski (Blr) Liquigas-Doimo
DNFMickael Delage (Fra) Omega Pharma-Lotto
DNFAdam Blyth (GBr) Omega Pharma-Lotto
DNFSebastian Lang (Ger) Omega Pharma-Lotto
DNFRick Flens (Ned) Rabobank
DNFThomas Leezer (Ned) Rabobank
DNFNick Nuyens (Bel) Rabobank
DNFTom Stamsnijder (Ned) Rabobank
DNFGreg Henderson (NZl) Sky Professional Cycling Team
DNFJulian Dean (NZl) Garmin - Transitions
DNFMatthew Wilson (Aus) Garmin - Transitions
DNFSteven Cozza (USA) Garmin - Transitions
DNFSvein Tuft (Can) Garmin - Transitions
DNFMark Cavendish (GBr) Team HTC - Columbia
DNFMartin Velits (Svk) Team HTC - Columbia
DNFMarco Bandiera (Ita) Team Katusha
DNFMaxime Vantomme (Bel) Team Katusha
DNFRobbie Mcewen (Aus) Team Katusha
DNFMikhaylo Khalilov (Ukr) Team Katusha
DNFWim De Vocht (Bel) Team Milram
DNFMarkus Eichler (Ger) Team Milram
DNFThomas Fothen (Ger) Team Milram
DNFServais Knaven (Ned) Team Milram
DNFPeter Wrolich (Aut) Team Milram
DNFPaul Voss (Ger) Team Milram
DNFTomas Vaitkus (Ltu) Team Radioshack
DNFMarkel Irizar Aranburu (Spa) Team Radioshack
DNFYaroslav Popovych (Ukr) Team Radioshack
DNFSebastien Rosseler (Bel) Team Radioshack
DNFBaden Cooke (Aus) Team Saxo Bank
DNFAnders Lund (Den) Team Saxo Bank
DNFStuart O'Grady (Aus) Team Saxo Bank
DNFMathieu Claude (Fra) Bbox Bouygues Telecom
DNFYohann Gene (Fra) Bbox Bouygues Telecom
DNFDamien Gaudin (Fra) Bbox Bouygues Telecom
DNFMartin Kohler (Swi) BMC Racing Team
DNFJackson Stewart (USA) BMC Racing Team
DNFDanilo Wyss (Swi) BMC Racing Team
DNFJeremy Hunt (GBr) Cervelo Test Team
DNFMartin Reimer (Ger) Cervelo Test Team
DNFBrett Lancaster (Aus) Cervelo Test Team
DNFGabriel Rasch (Nor) Cervelo Test Team
DNFDavid Boucher (Fra) Landbouwkrediet
DNFDavy Commeyne (Bel) Landbouwkrediet
DNFBert De Waele (Bel) Landbouwkrediet
DNFKevin Neirynck (Bel) Landbouwkrediet
DNFGeert Verheyen (Bel) Landbouwkrediet
DNFMitchell Docker (Aus) Skil - Shimano
DNFSteve Houanard (Fra) Skil - Shimano
DNFJob Vissers (Ned) Skil - Shimano
DNFPiet Rooijakkers (Ned) Skil - Shimano
DNFJohan Coenen (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator
DNFThomas De Gendt (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator
DNFPieter Jacobs (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator
DNFKlaas Lodewyck (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator
DNFGeert Steurs (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator
DNFMaarten Neyens (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator
DNFSteven Van Vooren (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator
DNFWouter Mol (Ned) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team
DNFJens Mouris (Ned) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team

 

Latest on Cyclingnews