Gilbert takes triple-double with Flandrien 2010 award
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Sunday, October 17, 2010

Gilbert takes triple-double with Flandrien 2010 award

by Bjorn Haake at 2:53 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
Caps another successful fall campaign

philippe gilbertHours after taking his second Giro di Lombardia in a row, Philippe Gilbert was also crowned with the Flandrien 2010 award, ahead of Tom Boonen and teammate Jurgen van den Broeck. His Flandrien 2009 award and his second consecutive Giro del Piemonte on Thursday thus completed his triple-double of victories. Gilbert is scheduled to ride the Chrono des Nations - Les Herbières Vendée today, giving him the chance to take another win.

Unlike last year, Gilbert had traveled to Brussels for the Flandrien awards and picked up his price in person. The final voting happened right in the studio, with ex-professionals voting for the final three, using electronic devices to cast their votes. The final order of the three contenders was then determined by the votes of active professionals in the studio. These included Gilbert, Jurgen van den Broeck and Thor Hushovd. Despite making it to the the studio, Hushovd was unable to get enough votes for the Flandrien International award, which instead went to Fabian Cancellara. Liesbet De Vocht became Flandrienne of the year.

World Champion Hushovd handed the trophy to Gilbert. The spectators, including Eddy Merckx, then listened to Gilbert. "I want to also thank my team, my teammate. I have won a very pretty race, but I did not do this alone. I won't forget this."

Gilbert closed off 2009 with his stunning four victories in a row (Coppa Sabatini, Paris-Tours, Giro del Piemonte and Giro di Lombardia). His 2010 was equally successful, with a prestigious win at the Amstel Gold Race in April. He came in second at the Belgian National Championships road race, then won two stages at the Vuelta a España. He was unable to defend his title in Paris-Tours, citing the aftermath of the travel to and from the Worlds in Australia. In Piemonte and Lombardy he was back to his old self.

His win in the Giro di Lombardia was also impressive as he overcame adverse weather conditions. Only 34 riders finished the gruelling, almost seven hours in the saddle. Even riders in good positions had to succumb to the elements. Haimar Zubeldia showed a promising move, but eventually faded away and had to abandon due to hypothermia.



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