Sky's Sutton takes surprise win in Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne bunch sprint
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Sunday, February 27, 2011

Sky's Sutton takes surprise win in Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne bunch sprint

by Bjorn Haake at 11:10 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Race Reports and Results
Sunny weather eliminates epic breaks and leads to bunch sprint

chris suttonTeam Sky's Christopher Sutton won the bunch sprint to take Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne ahead of Yauheni Hutarovich (Française des Jeux) and André Greipel (Omega Pharma-Lotto. Tyler Farrar, who was boxed in, only managed fourth place. Boonen tried an attack with six kilometers to go, forfeiting his chances in the sprint. He was caught with two kilometers to go and missed out on a third win in the race.

Sutton crossed the line with a huge smile, visibly astonished about what he had pulled off. "Yes, I am pretty surprised," the Australian said after the race on Belgian TV. But he was the designated man for his Sky team. "I felt pretty good this morning and told the team I was up for it." His teammates put their faith in Sutton. "Edvald Boasson Hagen told me that he would prepare the sprint for me."

He was asked again in the final ten kilometers, when it had become very apparent that a huge bunch sprint would end the race. "I told them I was up for it," Sutton said. Boasson Hagen set the pace, with Sutton patiently sitting behind. "I was there with 500 meters to go, then I saw the 200-meter mark. I noticed someone came up on the right so I thought it is time to go." Off he went, leaving Hutarovich and big sprint favorite Greipel behind.

Sutton was quite happy with his teammates. "They did an incredible job. [Juan Antonio] Flecha did a big pull. Matthew Hayman crashed, Edvald Boasson Hagen went," a beaming Sutton said. The Australian said it was one of his biggest wins so far, alongside the Tour Down Under stage he took in 2010. "I always wanted to win one of the classics and it is really nice that I started with Kuurne."

His sports director Steven de Jongh was a classics specialist in his active times. "I haven't spoken to him yet but I am sure he will be very happy,' Sutton said.

A sunny day for a change

It was a dry day in Belgium, so last year's epic rain race would not be repeated. For the final the sun even came out. The weather made some riders itchy and the jumping started early on, with a group of five managing to get away: Edwig Cammaerts, Coyot, Andrew Fenn, Navardauskas and Van Groen. They quickly built a lead of five minutes. Fenn was dropped before the decisive action of the break. That decisive action was running the red light at a train crossing. The four leaders were quickly and swiftly eliminated from the course by the commissaires.

With the eviction of his former break companions, Fenn was suddenly the leader on the road. He was later joined by Sander Armée and Matthieu Ladagnous.

On the fourth climb of the day, the Kruisberg, Juan Antonio Flecha set the pace. Fenn, a first-year professional and a former Paris-Roubaix junior winner, had a hard time keeping the pace in the front group. He was reeled in by the bunch on the Oude Kwaremont, with 85km to go. Stijn Devolder was involved in a big crash before the Kwaremont, and had to use precious energy to get back to the peloton. Flecha set the pace again on the cobbles on the Oude Kwaremont, with Tom Boonen more attentive than yesterday.

At the Cote Du Trieu, Thomas Voeckler attacked and he formed a group with six others - Maxime Vantomme, Matthew Hayman, Jürgen Roelandts, Sergej Lagoetin, Martin Velits and Sébastien Minard. The seven caught the two leaders, Armée and Ladagnous, before the next climb, the Tiegemberg.

In the back, a large group including Devolder and Tyler Farrar, was dropped and rode around 20 seconds behind the peloton for several kilometers. It was not until the Nokereberg that the group was able to close the gap again.

With 42km to go, the gap to the nine-man front group dropped under the one-minute mark. With the peloton larger again, the difference was quickly reduced and the nine were caught with 34km to go.

Lars Ytting Bak went solo, shortly after the front group was caught. He build a lead of half a minute by the time he hit the finish line for the first time. But there were still two laps of 13km to go, with a strong wind not helping the Danish rider. A group of five was chasing Bak for a few kilometers, around 15 seconds behind Bak and 15 seconds ahead of the peloton.

With 20km to go, the peloton had caught the chasers but three riders, including Jimmy Engoulvent who was also part of the five-man break, tried again. The other two were Sébastien Hinault and Alessandro Proni. Bak was still over 20 seconds clear.

With 17 kilometers to go, the three had caught Bak. The gap was around a dozen seconds on the peloton. Omega Pharma - Lotto controlled the bunch for André Greipel. The peloton entered the last lap - with 13km to go, 13 seconds behind the leading quartet of Bak, Engoulvent, Hinault and Proni.

With six kilometers to go the gap was down to half a dozen seconds. Engoulvent used a roundabout to go solo. The other three sat up and to their surprise saw Boonen attack and join Engoulvent.

Boonen seemed to be afraid of the sprinters like Farrar, Greipel or Gerald Ciolek. The duo was caught just after the two-km banner, setting up things for the bunch sprint.


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2011 Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne Results (193km)

  Click on the arrowsat the top of the column to sort the race results.
Country Result Name Team Time
aus AUS 1 Christopher Sutton (Team Sky) 04:39:39
blr BLR 2 Yauheni Hutarovich (FDJ) s.t.
ger GER 3 Andre Greipel (Omega Pharma-Lotto) s.t.
usa USA 4 Tyler Farrar (Garmin-Cervelo) s.t.
bel BEL 5 Jonas Vangenechten (Wallonie Bruxelles-Credit Agricole) s.t.
fra FRA 6 Sébastien Chavanel (Europcar) s.t.
fra FRA 7 Anthony Ravard (Ag2r-La Mondiale) s.t.
nor NOR 8 Edvald Boasson Hagen (Team Sky) s.t.
fra FRA 9 Adrien Petit (Cofidis) s.t.
bel BEL 10 Kristof Goddaert (Ag2r-La Mondiale) s.t.
bel BEL 11 James Vanlandschoot (Verandas Willems-Accent) s.t.
bel BEL 12 Leif Hoste (Katusha) s.t.
ned NED 13 Bobbie Traksel (Landbouwkrediet) s.t.
bel BEL 14 Stijn Neirynck (Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator) s.t.
bel BEL 15 Wouter Weylandt (Leopard-Trek) s.t.
bel BEL 16 Bert De Backer (Skil-Shimano) s.t.
ger GER 17 Gerald Ciolek (Quick Step) s.t.
fra FRA 18 Saïd Haddou (Europcar) s.t.
bel BEL 19 Kurt Hovelynck (Donckers Koffie-Jelly Belly) s.t.
slo SLO 20 Borut Bozic (Vacansoleil-DCM) s.t.
rus RUS 21 Nikolai Trussov (Katusha) s.t.
irl IRL 22 Matthew Brammeier (HTC-Highroad) s.t.
bel BEL 23 Jarl Salomein (Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator) s.t.
ita ITA 24 Luca Paolini (Katusha) s.t.
ita ITA 25 Mirko Selvaggi (Vacansoleil-DCM) s.t.
bel BEL 26 Gianni Meersman (FDJ) s.t.
fra FRA 27 Stéphane Poulhiès (Saur-Sojasun) s.t.
fra FRA 28 Tony Gallopin (Cofidis) s.t.
fra FRA 29 Romain Lemarchand (Ag2r-La Mondiale) s.t.
fra FRA 30 Sébastien Turgot (Europcar) s.t.
fra FRA 31 Jimmy Casper (Saur-Sojasun) s.t.
bel BEL 32 Gorik Gardeyn (Vacansoleil-DCM) s.t.
ltu LTU 33 Gediminas Bagdonas (An Post-Sean Kelly) s.t.
bel BEL 34 Kevyn Ista (Cofidis) s.t.
bel BEL 35 Pieter Serry (Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator) s.t.
fra FRA 36 Lloyd Mondory (Ag2r-La Mondiale) s.t.
sui SUI 37 Martin Elmiger (Ag2r-La Mondiale) s.t.
sui SUI 38 Danilo Wyss (BMC Racing) s.t.
can CAN 39 Dominique Rollin (FDJ) s.t.
ned NED 40 Rob Ruijgh (Vacansoleil-DCM) s.t.
uzb UZB 41 Sergey Lagutin (Vacansoleil-DCM) s.t.
ita ITA 42 Alessandro Donati (Acqua & Sapone) s.t.
fra FRA 43 Renaud Dion (Bretagne-Schuller) s.t.
lat LAT 44 Gatis Smukulis (HTC-Highroad) s.t.
bel BEL 45 Maxime Vantomme (Katusha) s.t.
aus AUS 46 Mathew Hayman (Team Sky) s.t.
den DEN 47 Lars Ytting Bak (HTC-Highroad) s.t.
ned NED 48 Bram Tankink (Rabobank) s.t.
bel BEL 49 Jens Keukeleire (Cofidis) s.t.
bel BEL 50 Gilles Devillers (Wallonie Bruxelles-Credit Agricole) s.t.
bel BEL 51 Pieter Jacobs (Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator) s.t.
bel BEL 52 Gert Steegmans (Quick Step) s.t.
fra FRA 53 Rony Martias (Saur-Sojasun) s.t.
bel BEL 54 Ludovic Mottet (Wallonie Bruxelles-Credit Agricole) s.t.
bel BEL 55 Guillaume Van Keirsbulck (Quick Step) s.t.
ned NED 56 Jos Van Emden (Rabobank) s.t.
fra FRA 57 Anthony Delaplace (Saur-Sojasun) s.t.
ned NED 58 Maarten Tjallingii (Rabobank) s.t.
fra FRA 59 Yuriy Krivtsov (Ag2r-La Mondiale) s.t.
ger GER 60 Marcel Sieberg (Omega Pharma-Lotto) s.t.
fra FRA 61 Mathieu Claude (Europcar) s.t.
bel BEL 62 Klaas Lodewyck (Omega Pharma-Lotto) s.t.
bel BEL 63 Robin Steenuit (Wallonie Bruxelles-Credit Agricole) s.t.
fra FRA 64 Frédéric Guesdon (FDJ) s.t.
fra FRA 65 Mickael Delage (FDJ) s.t.
fra FRA 66 Cyril Lemoine (Saur-Sojasun) s.t.
fra FRA 67 Arnaud Labbe (Cofidis) s.t.
aus AUS 68 Travis Meyer (Garmin-Cervelo) s.t.
bel BEL 69 Staf Scheirlinckx (Verandas Willems-Accent) s.t.
gbr GBR 70 Ian Stannard (Team Sky) s.t.
bel BEL 71 Wim De Vocht (Verandas Willems-Accent) s.t.
blr BLR 72 Aleksandr Kuschynski (Katusha) s.t.
ned NED 73 Koen De Kort (Skil-Shimano) s.t.
bel BEL 74 Sander Armee (Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator) s.t.
ltu LTU 75 Egidijus Juodvalkis (Landbouwkrediet) s.t.
irl IRL 76 Mark Cassidy (An Post-Sean Kelly) s.t.
ned NED 77 Huub Duyn (Donckers Koffie-Jelly Belly) s.t.
bel BEL 78 Johan Coenen (Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator) s.t.
bel BEL 79 Bert Scheirlinckx (Landbouwkrediet) s.t.
fra FRA 80 Tristan Valentin (Cofidis) s.t.
bel BEL 81 Greg Van Avermaet (BMC Racing) s.t.
esp ESP 82 Juan Antonio Flecha Giannoni (Team Sky) s.t.
bel BEL 83 Nikolas Maes (Quick Step) s.t.
ita ITA 84 Manuel Quinziato (BMC Racing) s.t.
ita ITA 85 Davide Vigano (Leopard-Trek) s.t.
fra FRA 86 Sébastien Hinault (Ag2r-La Mondiale) s.t.
bel BEL 87 Jan Ghyselinck (HTC-Highroad) s.t.
fra FRA 88 Sébastien Minard (Ag2r-La Mondiale) s.t.
usa USA 89 Danny Pate (HTC-Highroad) s.t.
bel BEL 90 Geert Verheyen (Landbouwkrediet) s.t.
fra FRA 91 Sylvain Chavanel (Quick Step) s.t.
bel BEL 92 Olivier Pardini (Wallonie Bruxelles-Credit Agricole) s.t.
ger GER 93 Sebastian Lang (Omega Pharma-Lotto) s.t.
fra FRA 94 Thomas Voeckler (Europcar) s.t.
can CAN 95 David Veilleux (Europcar) s.t.
bel BEL 96 Kevin Hulsmans (Donckers Koffie-Jelly Belly) s.t.
gbr GBR 97 Jeremy Hunt (Team Sky) s.t.
bel BEL 98 Maarten Wynants (Rabobank) s.t.
ita ITA 99 Filippo Pozzato (Katusha) s.t.
ned NED 100 Karsten Kroon (BMC Racing) s.t.
bel BEL 101 Tom Boonen (Quick Step) s.t.
bel BEL 102 Johan Vansummeren (Garmin-Cervelo) s.t.
ita ITA 103 Marco Bandiera (Quick Step) s.t.
fra FRA 104 Matthieu Ladagnous (FDJ) s.t.
svk SVK 105 Martin Velits (HTC-Highroad) s.t.
bel BEL 106 Jürgen Roelandts (Omega Pharma-Lotto) s.t.
fra FRA 107 Damien Gaudin (Europcar) s.t.
rus RUS 108 Serguei Ivanov (Katusha) s.t.
ger GER 109 Martin Reimer (Skil-Shimano) 00:00:21
fra FRA 110 Jimmy Engoulvent (Saur-Sojasun) s.t.
ned NED 111 Joost Van Leijen (Vacansoleil-DCM) s.t.
ger GER 112 Dominic Klemme (Leopard-Trek) 00:00:24
nor NOR 113 Kurt Asle Arvesen (Team Sky) 00:00:52
ned NED 114 Robin Chaigneau (Skil-Shimano) 00:01:06
ger GER 115 Robert Wagner (Leopard-Trek) 00:01:20
ita ITA 116 Alessandro Proni (Acqua & Sapone) 00:01:33
bel BEL 117 Sjef De Wilde (Verandas Willems-Accent) s.t.
fra FRA 118 Anthony Geslin (FDJ) 00:01:40
bel BEL 119 Frederik Willems (Omega Pharma-Lotto) 00:01:57
bel BEL 120 Jurgen Van De Walle (Omega Pharma-Lotto) 00:02:44
ned NED 121 Tom Leezer (Rabobank) 00:02:54
esp ESP 122 Vicente Reynes Mimo (Omega Pharma-Lotto) 00:03:35

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