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Giro finale
Photo ©: Bettini

49th Brabantse Pijl - 1.1

Belgium, March 29, 2009

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Geslin nails Brabantse sprint

By Gregor Brown

Anthony Geslin (Française Des Jeux) celebrates
Photo ©: Cyclingnews
(Click for larger image)

Frenchman Anthony Geslin made his presence in an elite selection count by overpowering his escape companions in a thrilling finale of the Brabantse Pijl in Beersel, Belgium. The Française des Jeux rider beat former teammate Jérôme Pineau (Quick Step) after a last-minute attack by Fabian Wegmann (Milram), who finished third.

"This is the biggest win of my career," he said after the 193.5-kilometre race.

Geslin finished third in the 2005 World Championship won by Tom Boonen. His last win was in July when he won the Tour du Doubs.

Geslin, Pineau, Wegmann, Christian Knees (Milram), Karsten Kroon (Saxo Bank), Frederik Willems (Liquigas), Björn Leukemans (Vacansoleil) and Xavier Florencio (Cervélo TestTeam) entered the final kilometre with a gap of around 15 seconds on the chase.

Knees did the muscle work for teammate and German Champion Wegmann. Wegmann fired off the back of the eight-man move at 230 metres out, down the right hand side of the road. Geslin passed on the left and Pineau nipped in for second.

"Wegmann went early, but there was a headwind on the finishing straight and I was able to pass," said Geslin.

"I am not disappointed," said Pineau. "It's great to be second, even though it's been a long time since I won."

An escape of the day went before the 40-kilometre marker with Jurgen Van de Walle (Quick Step), Alexandr Pliuschin (AG2R La Mondiale), Yukiya Arashiro (Bbox Bouygues Telecom), Frédéric Guesdon (Française des Jeux), Sébastien Minard (Cofidis), Thomas Fothen (Milram), Marc De Maar (Rabobank), Theo Eltink (Skil-Shimano), Dominique Rollin (Cervélo TestTeam), Borut Bozic (Vacansoleil) and Matthew Brammeier (An Post - Sean Kelly Team). The move lasted for the southern journey of the race, but faded in the finale.

Pineau, Knees and Geslin hit the front with 30 kilometres to go. Saxo Bank's Kroon led the charge on the Bruineput climb (-27km) to form a group that would stick to the end. Cervélo charged on the leaders to launch Simon Gerrans and Florencio. The latter joined to make it eight.

The gap was 17 seconds at 15 kilometres remaining, 16 seconds at -12km and 18 seconds at -8km. Philippe Gilbert desperately tried to close the gap and give his Silence-Lotto team a card to play. It did not work; the escape topped the final climb, Lingbuter, with 16 seconds.


For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here

Images by DCP/Bert Geerts

Images by Tim Van Wichelen/www.Cyclingview.be

Images by Cyclingnews


1 Anthony Geslin (Fra) Française Des Jeux            4.00.22  (44.54km/h)
2 Jérôme Pineau (Fra) Quick Step                            
3 Fabian Wegmann (Ger) Team Milram                          
4 Björn Leukemans (Bel) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team        
5 Karsten Kroon (Ned) Team Saxo Bank                        
6 Frederik Willems (Bel) Liquigas                       0.03
7 Xavier Florencio Cabre (Spa) Cervelo TestTeam             
8 Christian Knees (Ger) Team Milram                     0.07
9 Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Silence-Lotto                  0.20
10 Benoît Vaugrenard (Fra) Française Des Jeux               
11 Niko Eeckhout (Bel) An Post-Sean Kelly Team              
12 Gerben Löwik (Ned) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team          
13 Bert De Waele (Bel) Landbouwkrediet - Colnago            
14 Johan Coenen (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator        
15 Preben Van Hecke (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator    
16 Allan Davis (Aus) Quick Step                             
17 Paul Martens (Ger) Rabobank                              
18 Serge Pauwels (Bel) Cervelo TestTeam                     
19 Matti Breschel (Den) Team Saxo Bank                      
20 Pierre Rolland (Fra) BBox Bouygues Telecom               
21 Samuel Dumoulin (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne        
22 Ben Hermans (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator         
23 Laurens Ten Dam (Ned) Rabobank                       0.38
24 Pieter Weening (Ned) Rabobank                        0.40
25 Francesco Reda (Ita) Quick Step                      1.03
26 Biel Kadri (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale                    1.48
27 Grega Bole (Slo) Amica Chips-Knauf                       
28 Kenny Van Braeckel (Bel) Revor-Jartazi Cycling Team      
29 Frank Hoj (Den) Team Saxo Bank                           
30 Lloyd Mondory (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale                     
31 Koen Barbe (Bel) Landbouwkrediet - Colnago               
32 Aleksandr Kuschynski (Blr) Liquigas                      
33 Dominique Rollin (Can) Cervelo TestTeam                  
34 Yuriy Krivtsov (Ukr) AG2R La Mondiale                    
35 Geert Verheyen (Bel) Landbouwkrediet - Colnago           
36 Simone Ponzi (Ita) Lampre - N.G.C.                       
37 Floris Goesinnen (Ned) Skil-Shimano                      
38 Marcel Wyss (Swi) Cervelo TestTeam                       
39 Mickaël Buffaz (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne         
40 Iker Camano (Spa) Fuji-Servetto                          
41 Josep Jufre (Spa) Fuji-Servetto                          
42 Carlos Barredo (Spa) Quick Step                          
43 Martin Mortensen (Den) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team      
44 Bram De Groot (Ned) Rabobank                             
45 Mikael Cherel (Fra) Française Des Jeux                   
46 Jelle Vanendert (Bel) Silence-Lotto                      
47 Wesley Sulzberger (Aus) Française Des Jeux               
48 Yohann Gene (Fra) BBox Bouygues Telecom                  
49 Stéphane Auge (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne          
50 Maarten Neyens (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator      
51 Grischa Niermann (Ger) Rabobank                          
52 Michal Golas (Pol) Amica Chips-Knauf                     
53 Simon Gerrans (Aus) Cervelo TestTeam                     
54 Peter Velits (Svk) Team Milram                           
55 Perrig Quemeneur (Fra) BBox Bouygues Telecom             
56 Frederik Veuchelen (Bel) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team    
57 Murilo Fischer (Bra) Liquigas                            
58 Filip Meirhaeghe (Bel) Landbouwkrediet - Colnago         
59 Jan Bakelants (Bel) Topsport Vlaanderen - Mercator       
60 Guillaume Bonnafond (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale               
61 Dries Devenyns (Bel) Quick Step                          
62 Martin Reimer (Ger) Cervelo TestTeam                     
63 Johnny Hoogerland (Ned) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team     
64 Jurgen Van De Walle (Bel) Quick Step                     
65 Ronny Scholz (Ger) Team Milram                           
66 Johannes Fröhlinger (Ger) Team Milram                    
67 Massimiliano Mori (Ita) Lampre - N.G.C.                  
68 Leonardo Duque (Col) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne         
69 Borut Bozic (Slo) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team           
70 Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn) BBox Bouygues Telecom              
71 Kenny De Haes (Bel) Team Katusha                         
72 Kurt-Asle Arvesen (Nor) Team Saxo Bank                   
73 Matheus Pronk (Ned) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team         
74 Steven Van Vooren (Bel) An Post-Sean Kelly Team          
75 Jean-Charles Senac (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale                
76 Arnoud Van Groen (Ned) Vacansoleil Pro Cycling Team      
77 Blaise Sonnery (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale                    
78 Oleg Chuzhda (Ukr) Contentopolis-AMPO                    
79 Romain Zingle (Bel) Verandas Willems                     
80 Sergio Dominguez Munoz (Spa) Contentopolis-AMPO          
81 Kai Reus (Ned) Rabobank                                  
82 Wim Vanhuffel (Bel) Vorarlberg - Corratec                
83 Serguei Ivanov (Rus) Team Katusha                        
84 Marcus Ljungqvist (Swe) Team Saxo Bank                   
85 Matthew Goss (Aus) Team Saxo Bank                        
86 Florent Brard (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne          
87 Bert Roesems (Bel) Cinelli-Down Under                    
88 Daniel Musiol (Ger) Vorarlberg - Corratec                
89 Olivier Kaisen (Bel) Silence-Lotto                       
90 Stefan Van Dijk (Ned) Verandas Willems                   
91 Reto Hollenstein (Swi) Vorarlberg - Corratec             
92 Stijn Vandenbergh (Bel) Team Katusha                     
93 Alexander Efimkin (Rus) AG2R La Mondiale                 
94 Bart Dockx (Bel) Silence-Lotto                           
95 Benny De Schrooder (Bel) An Post-Sean Kelly Team         
96 Julien Belgy (Fra) BBox Bouygues Telecom                 
97 Sébastien Portal (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne       
98 Sébastien Minard (Fra) Cofidis, Le Credit En Ligne       
99 Martin Velits (Svk) Team Milram                          
100 Paidi O'Brien (Irl) An Post-Sean Kelly Team             
101 Matthias Russ (Ger) Team Milram                         
102 Francesco Rivera (Ita) Amica Chips-Knauf