Franck Vandenbroucke notched up a victory for Lotto before moving on to the team of his dreams, Mapei-MG, after the Grand Prix de Rennes on April 2. For a good three hours of the race there was heavy rainfall. At 15km the first difficulty, the cote des Gardes, led to a break of about 60 riders driven along by the Belgian Vlaanderen 2002 team. The turning point was at 60km when 10 riders broke clear of this group: Auger, Leroy, Bourguignon, Cornillet, Aubier, Verhoeven, O'Grady, Vandenbroucke, Moreels and Vansevenant. When, at 60km from the finish, the failure of this break to work together made it look as if it might be caught, Sammy Moreels (Lotto) took off alone. With Moreels having only a 14-second lead, and a first chasing group catching the remaining escapers, Vandenbroucke asked permission from team manager Jos Braekeveld to go after Moreels "I was still feeling very fresh," said Vandenbroucke. "The others were cooked." Within 3km VDB caught Moreels and "didn't feel bad about overtaking him in the last kilometre of the race"
Race Distance: 207km
1. Vandenbroucke (Bel, Lotto) 5.8.45 2. Moreels (Bel, Lotto) at 5 sec 3. Bourguignon (Fr, Le Groupement) 1.40 4. Verhoeven (Neth, Palmans) same time 5. Hoffman (Neth, TVM), 2.03 6. Redant (Bel, TVM), 2.04 7. Marie (Fr, Castorama) 2.07 8. Durand (Fr, Casto) 2.22 9. Bouillon (Bel, Cedico), same time 10. Feys (Bel, Vlaanderen 2002), 2.24Bourguignon's third place gives him the lead in the Coupe de France series (open to French riders). The next race in the series is the GP de Rennes on 2 April.