Geslin takes the win in Brabantse Pijl
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Sunday, March 29, 2009

Geslin takes the win in Brabantse Pijl

by VeloNation Press at 12:12 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Spring Classics
Française des Jeux rider Anthony Geslin overtook a fading Fabian Wegmann from Team Milram to cross the finish line first in the Brabantse Pijl Sunday, giving the Frenchman the biggest win of his career.

With most of the big name riders resting for next week's Tour of Flanders, Brabantse Pijl is a race that can be difficult to control and also produce a surprise winner from the bunch.

The first big break of the day was a group of 11 riders, but didn't have the right mix to stay through to the end.

With around 30km to go of the 193.5km race, Team Saxo Bank's Karsten Kroon put in an attack on the Bruineput climb that formed a 7-man break including Geslin, Jérôme Pineau from Quick-Step, Fabian Wegmann and Christian Knees from Milram, Frederik Willems from Liquigas, Björn Leukemans from Vacansoleil. Notably absent from the move was the Cervélo TestTeam, who had been riding well all day.

Cervélo began to chase hard with Dominique Rollin, who featured in the earlier break, doing a lions share of the work. Once they pulled the break to within reach, Cervélo's Simon Gerrans attacked on one of the climbs launching teammate Xavier Florencio across the gap.

With Rabobank and Silence-Lotto desperate for a result the gap began to erode.

But on the last climb of the race with 4km to go the break was able to gain enough time to survive to the finish.

In the closing kilometers a tactical-minded Knees told Wegmann to sit at the back and rest up for the finish, while Pineau had already been taking the liberty of an arm-chair ride by way of his Quick-Step teams reputation. As Knees drove the race home on the uphill finish, Wegmann attacked the group from the back at 250 meters and got what looked like an unassailable lead. But leaving the door open for Geslin on his right turned out to be his undoing as the Frenchman sailed by the flailing German for the win with Pineau adding more salt in the wound as he pipped him on the line for second.

Results from the Brabantse Pijl:

1. Anthony Geslin - Française Des Jeux
2. Jérôme Pineau - Quick-Step
3. Fabian Wegmann - Team Milram
4. Björn Leukemans - Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team
5. Karsten Kroon - Team Saxo Bank
6. Frederik Willems - Liquigas
7. Xavier Florencio Cabre - Cervelo TestTeam
8. Christian Knees - Team Milram
9. Philippe Gilbert - Silence-Lotto
10. Benoît Vaugrenard - Française Des Jeux

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