Wiggle High5 Pro Cycling’s Amy Pieters won her third consecutive edition of the Dwars door Vlaanderen, in Waregem, West Flanders, even after the peloton had caught the 13-rider group that she had been part of. Belgian Champion Jolien D’hoore completed a one-two for the black and orange squad on an emotional day for her country, while 2015 Wiggle Honda rider Eileen Roe (Lares-Waowdeals) completed the podium in third place.
“The race was good. I think we did a good job as a team,” Pieters explained. “We all rode well as a team. After the Paterberg we had a small breakaway with Amy Roberts and me, and Dani was close behind us. The later on the small local lap Dani came up to us, and then in the last kilometre and a half Jolien came back with the peloton.”
The race, sometimes known as the “mini Tour of Flanders,” was to take in many of the climbs featured in next month’s race, and it was on the most famous of these - the Oude Kwaremont and Paterberg - where Pieters strength formed what looked to be the decisive break.
The Dutchwoman forced a group of 11 riders clear, that also included Wiggle High5 Pro Cycling’s Roberts, while Dani King was also able to join shortly afterwards as the number grew to 13. Belgian Champion D’hoore had suffered a mechanical problem at the foo of the Oude Kwaremont, and so had missed the split, but was able to wait patiently in the peloton as other teams were forced to chase.
With less that two kilometres to go, the peloton finally made the catch, but King still had the speed to lead Pieters around the final corner with 300 meters to go, and the Dutchwoman was able to finish it off. D’hoore - who is still rediscovering her road legs after riding on the track all winter - was able to beat Roe to second place.
1. Amy Pieters (Wiggle High5 Pro Cycling)
2. Jolien D’hoore (Wiggle High5 Pro Cycling)
3. Eileen Roe (Lares-Waowdeals)
photos Janos Schmidt