Kittel wins the prize in Scheldeprijs

Marcel Kittel (Argos-Shimano) claimed the victory in a rainy 100th edition of the Scheldeprijs in Schoten, Belgium. The German power house won the bunch sprint ahead of Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Barracuda) and Theo Bos (Rabobank).

Kittel follows in the footsteps of Mark Cavendish (Sky), who became a father one day before the Belgian race and was not present at the start line.

It was the first victory for Kittel's new team sponsor, Argos, which was announced four days earlier, and a confirmation of the sprinting prowess of the 23-year-old in a race which is often referred to as the unofficial world championships for sprinters..

"I'm really happy to have won the centenarian edition of this race. This is a race every sprinter dreams about so I'm really happy to be on the list of winners," Kittel told Sporza right after the race.

Kittel was delighted with his win but regretted the missed opportunity to duel with Cavendish.

"I look forward to racing him [Cavendish]. When I heard he was not here I was a little disappointed but I think he has a very good reason to stay at home," Kittel said.

Tyler Farrar won the Scheldeprijs in 2010 but this time around he had to settle for second place. The American rider was pleased with his sprint but acknowledged that Kittel was simply faster. "I rode a good sprint but that was not good enough today; Kittel was simply better. Too bad because I was perfectly delivered in the sprint by my teammates," Farrar said.

Third-place Theo Bos was also well delivered in the sprint but the multiple track sprint world champion fell short in the end. "Mark Renshaw did the perfect job but I was on the 11 and in this cold weather that was a tough gear to deal with," Bos said.

A cold rain that fell in the final hour of the race caused a number of crashes, the last of which happened across the finish line. "The weather made it really difficult. The rain started about five kilometer before the finish. You needed to stay in front to stay out of trouble and avoid the crashes," Kittel said.

The peloton set forth from Schoten under overcast skies, and true to the formula, the day's breakaway went early when, after 17km, five riders were given the go-ahead to get maximum exposure for their sponsors.

Breakaway specialists David Boucher (FDJ-Big Mat), Kevin Hulsmans (Farnese Vini – Selle Italia) were accompanied by Kevin Claeys (Landbouwkrediet-Euphony), Kevin Van Melsen (Accent Jobs-Willems Verandas) and Simon Lambert-Lemay (Spidertech/C10). Two riders set-up the counter-attack but Sven Vandousselaere (Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator) and Kin San Wu (Champion Pro System) needed 20 km before they eventually bridged up with the five men in front.

By that time their lead over the peloton was up to more than nine minutes before the end of the first hour. As a result the pace in the peloton increased during the second hour due to the efforts of teams like Garmin-Barracuda and Omega Pharma - Quickstep. Rather quickly the gap was reduced to less than five minutes. The breakaway group was helped by a railway crossing at 100km from the finish line in Schoten as they were able to pass while the peloton was halted for about a minute.

As the first drops began to fall from the skies and the peloton finished its large loop, Tom Boonen came to the front of the race and took a long pull, his furious pace and a number of crashes behind him causing splits in the peloton, but with three small circuits still to race, it was clear that Boonen was simply testing his legs for Sunday's Paris-Roubaix and staying safe on the slippery roads.

With 25 km to go at the cobbles of the Broekstraat Hulsmans attacked his breakaway group once the gap on the first peloton dropped below the minute, taking only Boucher, Claeys and Vandousselaere along. Going into the final lap the peloton was back together while the four remaining leaders were only a handful of seconds ahead.

As the peloton closed in, Hulsmans tried to go it alone, but with 10km to go he too was swept up by the Garmin-Barracuda-led peloton. A mid-pack crash caused another split in the bunch with 4km remaining, as Team Sky came to the fore.

The slick roads took out a few more riders in the final kilometers as Rabobank put in the final push to the line for Theo Bos, but it was Farrar who would open up the sprint only to be overtaken by the big German. Kittel delivered the first victory for his newly minted Argos-Shimano team.

"In the last kilometer I was on the wheel of Rabobank and then Tyler Farrar passed me on the right. At 300 or 250 meters to go he went out to the right side. I just followed him and also went directly into the wind and started my sprint. Theo Bos, Tyler Farrar and me were sprinting to the finish line," Kittel said.

His victory was slightly overshadowed by a horrible crash across the finish line when one of the press photographers was struck by one of several crashing riders, and emergency medics were called to the scene as the podium presentation got underway. Jonathan Cantwell (Saxo Bank) was injured in the incident.

Full Results

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#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Marcel Kittel (Ger) Argos-Shimano4:30:52
2Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin-BarracudaRow 1 - Cell 2
3Theo Bos (Ned) Rabobank Cycling TeamRow 2 - Cell 2
4Romain Feillu (Fra) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling TeamRow 3 - Cell 2
5Manuel Belletti (Ita) AG2R La MondialeRow 4 - Cell 2
6Elia Favilli (Ita) Farnese Vini - Selle ItaliaRow 5 - Cell 2
7Alexander Porsev (Rus) Katusha TeamRow 6 - Cell 2
8Sébastien Turgot (Fra) Team EuropcarRow 7 - Cell 2
9Giacomo Nizzolo (Ita) Radioshack-NissanRow 8 - Cell 2
10Guillaume Boivin (Can) Spidertech p/b C10Row 9 - Cell 2
11Matteo Trentin (Ita) Omega Pharma-QuickstepRow 10 - Cell 2
12André Greipel (Ger) Lotto Belisol TeamRow 11 - Cell 2
13Tom Van Asbroeck (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - MercatorRow 12 - Cell 2
14Jonathan Cantwell (Aus) Team Saxo BankRow 13 - Cell 2
15Christopher Sutton (Aus) Sky ProcyclingRow 14 - Cell 2
16Victor Manakov (Rus) RusVeloRow 15 - Cell 2
17Alexander Kristoff (Nor) Katusha TeamRow 16 - Cell 2
18Rudiger Selig (Ger) Katusha TeamRow 17 - Cell 2
19Michael Van Staeyen (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - MercatorRow 18 - Cell 2
20Kristof Goddaert (Bel) AG2R La MondialeRow 19 - Cell 2
21Michael Schwarzmann (Ger) Team NetAppRow 20 - Cell 2
22Boy Van Poppel (Ned) Unitedhealthcare Pro Cycling TeamRow 21 - Cell 2
23Jacob Keough (USA) Unitedhealthcare Pro Cycling TeamRow 22 - Cell 2
24Mark Renshaw (Aus) Rabobank Cycling TeamRow 23 - Cell 2
25Kris Boeckmans (Bel) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling TeamRow 24 - Cell 2
26Robert Hunter (RSA) Garmin-Barracuda0:00:04
27Stijn Neirynck (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - MercatorRow 26 - Cell 2
28Blaz Jarc (Slo) Team NetAppRow 27 - Cell 2
29Tom Veelers (Ned) Argos-ShimanoRow 28 - Cell 2
30Kenny Robert Van Hummel (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling TeamRow 29 - Cell 2
31Grégory Rast (Swi) Radioshack-NissanRow 30 - Cell 2
32Maxime Vantomme (Bel) Katusha TeamRow 31 - Cell 2
33Bert De Backer (Bel) Argos-Shimano0:00:18
34Martin Gilbert (Can) Spidertech p/b C10Row 33 - Cell 2
35Jonas Aaen Jörgensen (Den) Team Saxo BankRow 34 - Cell 2
36Jack Bauer (NZl) Garmin-BarracudaRow 35 - Cell 2
37Matthias Friedemann (Ger) Champion System Pro Cycling Team0:00:22
38Mathew Hayman (Aus) Sky ProcyclingRow 37 - Cell 2
39Rob Goris (Bel) Accent Jobs - Willems Veranda'sRow 38 - Cell 2
40Andrea Guardini (Ita) Farnese Vini - Selle ItaliaRow 39 - Cell 2
41Reto Hollenstein (Swi) Team NetApp0:00:38
42Gregor Gazvoda (Slo) AG2R La MondialeRow 41 - Cell 2
43Tosh Van Der Sande (Bel) Lotto Belisol TeamRow 42 - Cell 2
44Greg Henderson (NZl) Lotto Belisol TeamRow 43 - Cell 2
45Roger Kluge (Ger) Argos-ShimanoRow 44 - Cell 2
46Yaroslav Popovych (Ukr) Radioshack-Nissan0:00:42
47Ryan Anderson (Can) Spidertech p/b C10Row 46 - Cell 2
48James Vanlandschoot (Bel) Accent Jobs - Willems Veranda'sRow 47 - Cell 2
49Jos Van Emden (Ned) Rabobank Cycling TeamRow 48 - Cell 2
50Michael Morkov (Den) Team Saxo BankRow 49 - Cell 2
51Andreas Schillinger (Ger) Team NetApp0:00:49
52Timon Seubert (Ger) Team NetAppRow 51 - Cell 2
53Sjef De Wilde (Bel) Accent Jobs - Willems Veranda'sRow 52 - Cell 2
54Graeme Brown (Aus) Rabobank Cycling Team0:00:53
55Jelle Wallays (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator0:01:04
56Jeremy Hunt (GBr) Sky ProcyclingRow 55 - Cell 2
57Clinton Robert Avery (NZl) Champion System Pro Cycling TeamRow 56 - Cell 2
58Francesco Chicchi (Ita) Omega Pharma-Quickstep0:01:09
59Cristiano Benenati (Ita) Farnese Vini - Selle ItaliaRow 58 - Cell 2
60Kevin Lacombe (Can) Spidertech p/b C10Row 59 - Cell 2
61Leonardo Giordani (Ita) Farnese Vini - Selle ItaliaRow 60 - Cell 2
62Bernhard Eisel (Aut) Sky Procycling0:01:32
63Andreas Klier (Ger) Garmin-BarracudaRow 62 - Cell 2
64Borut Bozic (Slo) Pro Team Astana0:01:47
65Marco Bandiera (Ita) Omega Pharma-Quickstep0:02:03
66Dmitriy Gruzdev (Kaz) Pro Team Astana0:02:35
67Andy Cappelle (Bel) Accent Jobs - Willems Veranda'sRow 66 - Cell 2
68Dirk Bellemakers (Ned) Landbouwkrediet-EuphonyRow 67 - Cell 2
69Kevin Peeters (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-EuphonyRow 68 - Cell 2
70Dmitriy Fofonov (Kaz) Pro Team AstanaRow 69 - Cell 2
71Mart Ojavee (Est) Champion System Pro Cycling TeamRow 70 - Cell 2
72Aaron Kemps (Aus) Champion System Pro Cycling TeamRow 71 - Cell 2
73Barry Markus (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling TeamRow 72 - Cell 2
74Valentin Iglinskiy (Kaz) Pro Team AstanaRow 73 - Cell 2
75Etienne Tortelier (Fra) Saur - SojasunRow 74 - Cell 2
76Tomas Vaitkus (Ltu) GreenEdge Cycling TeamRow 75 - Cell 2
77Frederique Robert (Bel) Lotto Belisol TeamRow 76 - Cell 2
78Jens Debusschere (Bel) Lotto Belisol TeamRow 77 - Cell 2
79Kasper Klostergaard Larsen (Den) Team Saxo Bank0:02:46
80Martin Mortensen (Den) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling TeamRow 79 - Cell 2
81Luke Roberts (Aus) Team Saxo BankRow 80 - Cell 2
82Baptiste Planckaert (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-EuphonyRow 81 - Cell 2
83Christophe Laborie (Fra) Saur - SojasunRow 82 - Cell 2
84Dennis Van Winden (Ned) Rabobank Cycling TeamRow 83 - Cell 2
85Thomas Leezer (Ned) Rabobank Cycling TeamRow 84 - Cell 2
86Steve Houanard (Fra) AG2R La MondialeRow 85 - Cell 2
87Lloyd Mondory (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:02:53
88Stéphane Poulhies (Fra) Saur - SojasunRow 87 - Cell 2
89Nikita Eskov (Rus) RusVelo0:03:05
90Jens Keukeleire (Bel) GreenEdge Cycling Team0:03:07
91Frederik Veuchelen (Bel) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team0:03:22
92Juan Antonio Flecha Giannoni (Spa) Sky Procycling0:03:30
93Mickael Delage (Fra) FDJ-Big Mat0:03:39
94William Bonnet (Fra) FDJ-Big MatRow 93 - Cell 2
95Sven Jodts (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator0:03:57
96David Boucher (Fra) FDJ-Big MatRow 95 - Cell 2
97Joeri Bueken (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-EuphonyRow 96 - Cell 2
98Kenny Dehaes (Bel) Lotto Belisol TeamRow 97 - Cell 2
99Jay Thomson (RSA) Unitedhealthcare Pro Cycling TeamRow 98 - Cell 2
100Alexander Mironov (Rus) RusVeloRow 99 - Cell 2
101Ryan Roth (Can) Spidertech p/b C10Row 100 - Cell 2
102Stefan Van Dijk (Ned) Accent Jobs - Willems Veranda'sRow 101 - Cell 2
103Kurt Hovelynck (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-EuphonyRow 102 - Cell 2
104Hayden Roulston (NZl) Radioshack-NissanRow 103 - Cell 2
105Thomas Bertolini (Ita) Farnese Vini - Selle ItaliaRow 104 - Cell 2
106Roberto De Patre (Ita) Farnese Vini - Selle Italia0:04:04
107Bradley White (USA) Unitedhealthcare Pro Cycling Team0:04:06
108Philip Deignan (Irl) Unitedhealthcare Pro Cycling TeamRow 107 - Cell 2
109Ronan Van Zandbeek (Ned) Argos-ShimanoRow 108 - Cell 2
110Albert Timmer (Ned) Argos-ShimanoRow 109 - Cell 2
111Steve Chainel (Fra) FDJ-Big MatRow 110 - Cell 2
112Kevin Van Melsen (Bel) Accent Jobs - Willems Veranda'sRow 111 - Cell 2
113Gert Dockx (Bel) Lotto Belisol TeamRow 112 - Cell 2
114Jetse Bol (Ned) Rabobank Cycling TeamRow 113 - Cell 2
115Coen Vermeltfoort (Ned) Rabobank Cycling TeamRow 114 - Cell 2
116Simon Lambert-Lemay (Can) Spidertech p/b C10Row 115 - Cell 2
117Rony Martias (Fra) Saur - SojasunRow 116 - Cell 2
118Arnoud Van Groen (Ned) Accent Jobs - Willems Veranda'sRow 117 - Cell 2
119Hugo Houle (Can) Spidertech p/b C10Row 118 - Cell 2
120Kun Jiang (Chn) Champion System Pro Cycling TeamRow 119 - Cell 2
121Kevin Hulsmans (Bel) Farnese Vini - Selle ItaliaRow 120 - Cell 2
122Dmitry Kozontchuk (Rus) RusVeloRow 121 - Cell 2
123Pier Paolo De Negri (Ita) Farnese Vini - Selle ItaliaRow 122 - Cell 2
124Matvey Zubov (Rus) RusVeloRow 123 - Cell 2
125Joost Posthuma (Ned) Radioshack-NissanRow 124 - Cell 2
126Romain Lemarchand (Fra) AG2R La MondialeRow 125 - Cell 2
127Artem Ovechkin (Rus) RusVeloRow 126 - Cell 2
128Stijn Vandenbergh (Bel) Omega Pharma-QuickstepRow 127 - Cell 2
129Guillaume Van Keirsbulck (Bel) Omega Pharma-QuickstepRow 128 - Cell 2
130Tom Boonen (Bel) Omega Pharma-QuickstepRow 129 - Cell 2
131Gert Steegmans (Bel) Omega Pharma-QuickstepRow 130 - Cell 2
132Kevin Claeys (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-EuphonyRow 131 - Cell 2
133Koen Barbe (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-EuphonyRow 132 - Cell 2
134Laurent Mangel (Fra) Saur - SojasunRow 133 - Cell 2
135Sven Vandousselaere (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - MercatorRow 134 - Cell 2
136Matteo Tosatto (Ita) Team Saxo BankRow 135 - Cell 2
137Serguei Klimov (Rus) RusVeloRow 136 - Cell 2
138Steven Van Vooren (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - MercatorRow 137 - Cell 2
139Christian Knees (Ger) Sky ProcyclingRow 138 - Cell 2
140Markus Eichler (Ger) Team NetAppRow 139 - Cell 2
141Frédéric Guesdon (Fra) FDJ-Big MatRow 140 - Cell 2
142Sébastien Chavanel (Fra) Team EuropcarRow 141 - Cell 2
143Aleksandr Kuschynski (Blr) Katusha TeamRow 142 - Cell 2
144Said Haddou (Fra) Team EuropcarRow 143 - Cell 2
145Daniele Bennati (Ita) Radioshack-NissanRow 144 - Cell 2
146Damien Gaudin (Fra) Team EuropcarRow 145 - Cell 2
147Alexandre Pichot (Fra) Team EuropcarRow 146 - Cell 2
148Tony Gallopin (Fra) Radioshack-NissanRow 147 - Cell 2
149Nikolas Maes (Bel) Omega Pharma-QuickstepRow 148 - Cell 2
150Leif Hoste (Bel) Accent Jobs - Willems Veranda's0:04:31
151Grischa Janorschke (Ger) Team NetApp0:06:07
152Jens Mouris (Ned) GreenEdge Cycling Team0:06:10
153Lucas Sebastian Haedo (Arg) Team Saxo Bank0:06:24
154Mathieu Claude (Fra) Team Europcar0:06:52
155Jonathan Breyne (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-Euphony0:08:36
156Kin San Wu (HKg) Champion System Pro Cycling Team0:08:45
157Will Routley (Can) Spidertech p/b C100:09:25
158Marc De Maar (AHo) Unitedhealthcare Pro Cycling Team0:09:31
159Anuar Manan (Mas) Champion System Pro Cycling Team0:09:47

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