Omloop Het Nieuwsblad 2018: Michael Valgren brings late attack home

The Omloop Het Nieuwsblad totals 196.2 kilometres and takes in thirteen 'hellingen'. Michael Valgren attacks with 2 kilometres remaining to solo to victory. Łukasz Wiśniowski comes in second, Sep Vanmarcke in third. (Slideshow route/profile)

Results 2018 Omloop Het Nieuwsblad

1. Michael Valgren (den)
2. Lukasz Wisniowski (pol) + 0.12
3. Sep Vanmarcke (bel) s.t.
4. Jasper Stuyven (bel) s.t.
5. Philippe Gilbert (bel) s.t.
6. Edward Theuns (bel) s.t.
7. Bert Van Lerberghe (bel) s.t.
8. Sonny Colbrelli (ita) s.t.
9. Arnaud Démare (fra) s.t.
10. Marcus Burghardt (ger) s.t.

Race report
Brian van Goethem, Kenneth Vanbilsen, Edward Planckaert, Michael Svendgaard, Dries De Bondt, Marco Mathis, Michael Van Staeyen and Ludwig De Winter are the first attackers.Tim Ariesen and Aleksejs Saramotins chase them down, and we’re off for a chilly and windy day in the saddle. The ten race to a lead of 5 minutes.

Ariesen, Mathis, Van Staeyen and Svendgaard are the first attackers to be dropped. At Ruiterstraat, with some 60 kms remaining, Van Goethem is next, while De Bondt is reeled in after the Molenberg.

A group with Naesen, Wellens, Matthews, Gougeard, Stybar, Küng and Démare attacks and chase the remaining leaders down, while Magnus Cort bridges across. With 43 kms to go there is a regrouping.

At Berenddries, with 38 kms to go, Wellens once again accelerates. Van Avermaet hooks on with a string of other riders on his wheel – among others, Van Baarle, Stuyven, Theuns, Colbrelli, Stybar, Vanmarcke, Benoot. The last one pushes on at Valkenberg before the other attackers are brought back.

Benoot races to a lead of half a minute and he is caught at the top of Tenbosse.

With a fierce headwind the riders head for the Muur van Geraardsbergen. At the climb Vanmarcke attacks and after the top Stybar rejoins him. Van Avermaet, Naesen, Gatto, Lutsenko, Valgren, Colbrelli, Oss, Trentin and Van Aert chase them down before hitting the Bosberg. Lampaert and Wisniowski also make it back before again being dropped at the climb. Yet, the Pole return s with 11 kms remaining.

With 2.2 kms left Vanmarcke accelerates and Valgren goes on the counterattack. The Dane powers on to solo to his first Classics victory. Wisniowski comes in second, Vanmarcke in third, while the others members of the front group are caught by the chasing peloton. Stuyven wins the group sprint.

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