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by Mark Zalewski
March 2, 2017
In today’s CyclingTips Daily News Digest: Gibbons wins Tour de Langkawi, McCabe takes final stage; Van Keirsbulck wins slick Le Samyn; Gutiérrez wins Le Samyn des Dames; Baxhkou finally gets a win at La Tropicale Amissa Bongo; No proof provided to support British Cycling, Team Sky accounts of Wiggins’ mystery package; Innovative Hammer Series of racing unveiled by Velon, Infront and teams; Route de France cancelled as UCI and organisers clash; Sporting goods industry group responds to disc brake controversy; Tour of Flanders wildcard teams announced; Tour of Alberta announces title partner, reduces to four days; Park Tool awards tools to nonprofit groups; Video: 2017 UCI Women’s WorldTour – Ashleigh Moolman Pasio; Behind the scenes: Making of Road Cycling in Switzerland; Cooking with chef Peter Sagan.
Guillaume van Keirsbulck (Wanty – Groupe Gobert) won a two-up sprint against Alex Kirsch (WB Veranclassic Aqua Protect) as the final two holdouts from the breakaway held off the chasing peloton, led by Iljo Keisse (Quick Step Floors).
“The final was hectic,” van Keirsbulck told Sporza. “We did not have much of a lead on the last cobbles and Kirsch remained on my wheel. His sprint was my first concern.”
“I felt good last weekend, but I am still a little surprised!”
The day started out dry and clear, but during the race the skies opened up and drenched the peloton, breaking it into pieces. The main break contained van Keirsbulck and Kirsch, along with Jesper Asselman (Roompotstraat-Dutch Lottery), Maarten Wynants (LottoNL-Jumbo), Kenneth Vanbilsen (Cofidis) and Roy Jans (LA Vera Classic AquaProtect).
Quick Step Floors was notably absent and did a lot of work on the front. The rain made the cobbles treacherous and as the gap came down Kirsch made an attack, with only van Keirsbulck able to go with, leaving only the pair to contend for the win.