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Dauphiné Libéré
Photo ©: Sirotti

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59th Dwars door Vlaanderen - 1.2

Belgium, March 24, 2004

2003 Results    Results    Past winners

Strong win for Capelle

By Jeff Jones

Ludovic Capelle (Landbouwkrediet-Colnago) won the 59th Dwars door Vlaanderen with a powerful attack in the last two kilometres that no-one could match. Capelle, a former Belgian champion who spent two years as Jaan Kirsipuu's leadout man, pulled off a move very similar to that which won him the Grote Scheldeprijs last year. With just five men - including Kirsipuu - in contention for the victory, Capelle took advantage of the fact that the rest were all focused on the Estonian sprinter, and he made his attack count. 18 seconds later, Kirsipuu won the sprint for second ahead of Roger Hammond (MrBookmaker-Palmans).

The 204 km race was held in cool but fairly dry conditions, starting in Kortrijk and passing via Waregem, Gavere, Brakel, Kluisbergen and Tiegem before finishing with 15 km circuits around Waregem/Nokere. 162 riders started and after a fairly quiet first hour, the bunch split into three at Dentergem (km 42) due to the crosswinds. It came back together by Waregem (km 50) and it wasn't until Gavere (km 77) that the first serious attack was made.

Alessandro Donati, Piotr Chmielewski, Paul Van Hyfte and Erwin Thijs were joined by Bart Voskamp, Fabrizio Guidi and Magnus Bäckstedt, the seven riders managing to get a 45 second lead over the fast moving peloton. The gap was reduced to 25 seconds on the Katteberg (km 94), and in Brakel 9 km later the breakaway was caught.

The peloton did not stay together for long, as four riders: Jeremy Hunt (MrBookmaker-Palmans), Wim De Vocht (Bodysol), Jan Kuyckx (Vlaanderen) and Karsten Kroon (Rabobank) escaped at Michelbeke (km 105). They were chased and caught by Nico Eeckhout and Thierry Marichal (Lotto-Domo), Servais Knaven and Bram Tankink (Quick.Step-Davitamon), Dave Bruylandts (Chocolade Jacques), Erwin Thijs (MrBookmaker-Palmans), Ludovic Capelle (Landbouwkrediet), Christophe Agnolutto (Ag2r), Antonio Cruz (US Postal-Berry Floor), Jurgen Landrie and Franck Pencolé (Oktos). This was a serious move, and by kilometre 120 the group had 1'45, although Landrie lost contact after puncturing.

At Maarkedal (km 129), the 14 leaders were 2'20 ahead of the peloton, which was being towed by Credit Agricole and Cofidis, who had both missed the break. The Oude Kwaremont (km 150) saw Bruylandts, Pencolé and Knaven open up a gap over the rest, also spelling the end of Agnolutto's time in the break. At the top of the climb, there were three leaders, with the rest of the break chasing at 15 seconds and the peloton still hovering at 2'27.

Shortly after the Kwaremont on the Paterberg, a counter attack came from the peloton with Tom Boonen, Johan Museeuw (Quick.Step), Roger Hammond (MrBookmaker), Thor Hushovd (CA), Gerben Löwik (Jacques), Steven de Jongh (Rabobank) and Wim Vanhuffel (Vlaanderen) riding clear. With Boonen, Museeuw and Hammond doing some big turns, this group was able to close to within 0'57 just after Tiegem with 43 km to go. In the meantime the front riders had regrouped to form a bunch with 12 of the original break still present.

Thierry Marichal (Lotto-Domo)
Photo ©: Sabine Sunderland

The chase from behind stalled when more riders from the fragmented peloton caught Museeuw's group, but at 36 km to go, Roger Hammond (MrBookmaker) and Jaan Kirsipuu (Ag2r) set off by themselves to close the one minute gap to the leading 12. The pair worked extremely well and had hauled the leaders in 7 km later, just as they entered the two 15 km finishing circuits around Waregem. The peloton was at 1'45 at this stage and essentially out of contention, despite a last ditch attempt by Hushovd, Devolder, Van Bon and Ljungqvist to close the gap.

Over the next 30 km, the leading break was gradually whittled down to five riders: Capelle, Kirsipuu, Pencolé, Hammond and Bruylandts. In the end it was Capelle who was able to profit from the fact that everyone was watching Kirsipuu, and happily took the victory in Waregem.


Images by Sabine Sunderland

Results - 204 km

1 Ludovic Capelle (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-Colnago                 5.02.30 (40.463 km/h)
2 Jaan Kirsipuu (Est) AG2r Prévoyance                              0.18
3 Roger Hammond (GBr)
4 Dave Bruylandts (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Wincor Nixdorf
5 Franck Pencole (Fra) Oktos-Saint Quentin
6 Nico Eeckhout (Bel) Lotto-Domo                                   0.24
7 Servais Knaven (Ned) Quick.Step-Davitamon
8 Jan Kuyckx (Bel) Vlaanderen-T Interim                            1.08
9 Antonio Cruz (USA) US Postal Service presented by Berry Floor
10 Jeremy Hunt (GBr)
11 Karsten Kroon (Ned) Rabobank
12 Thierry Marichal (Bel) Lotto-Domo
13 Wim De Vocht (Bel) Relax-Bodysol
14 Bram Tankink (Ned) Quick.Step-Davitamon                         1.11
15 Marc Wauters (Bel) Rabobank                                     1.33
16 Nico Mattan (Bel) Relax-Bodysol
17 Max Van Heeswijk (Ned) US Postal Service presented by Berry Floor
18 Steven De Jongh (Ned) Rabobank
19 Gerben Löwik (Ned) Chocolade Jacques-Wincor Nixdorf
20 Yuri Mitlushenko (Ukr) Landbouwkrediet-Colnago
21 Leon Van Bon (Ned) Lotto-Domo
22 Marcus Ljungqvist (Swe) Alessio-Bianchi
23 Thor Hushovd (Nor) Crédit Agricole
24 Roy Sentjens (Ned) Rabobank
25 Kurt-Asle Arvesen (Nor) Team CSC
26 Remco Van Der Ven (Ned) BankGiroLoterij
27 Geert Omloop (Bel)
28 Tom Boonen (Bel) Quick.Step-Davitamon
29 Andy Flickinger (Fra) AG2r Prévoyance
30 Bert De Waele (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-Colnago
31 Didier Rous (Fra) Brioches la Boulangère
32 Magnus Backstedt (Swe) Alessio-Bianchi
33 Serge Baguet (Bel) Lotto-Domo
34 Stijn Devolder (Bel) US Postal Service presented by Berry Fl    2.11
35 Matthé Pronk (Ned) BankGiroLoterij                              3.50
36 Scott Sunderland (Aus) Alessio-Bianchi                          4.57
37 Lars Michaelsen (Den) Team CSC
38 Staf Scheirlinckx (Bel) Cofidis, Le Crédit par Téléphone        6.17
39 Bert Scheirlinckx (Bel)
40 Christophe Agnolutto (Fra) AG2r Prévoyance
41 Stéphane Berges (Fra) AG2r Prévoyance
42 Bart Dockx (Bel) Relax-Bodysol
43 Gustavo Domingos Lemos (Spa) Relax-Bodysol
44 Laszlo Bodrogi (Hun) Quick.Step-Davitamon
45 Gerhard Trampusch (Aut) Acqua & Sapone-Caffè Mokambo
46 Sébastien Hinault (Fra) Crédit Agricole
47 Bert Roesems (Bel) Relax-Bodysol
48 Saulius Ruskys (Ltu) Oktos-Saint Quentin
49 Michael Barry (Can) US Postal Service presented by Berry Floor
50 Jean-Michel Tessier (Fra) Oktos-Saint Quentin
51 Wim Van Huffel (Bel) Vlaanderen-T Interim
52 Vladimir Goussev (Rus) Team CSC
53 Kevin De Weert (Bel) Rabobank
54 Lilian Jegou (Fra) Crédit Agricole
55 Rony Martias (Fra) Brioches la Boulangère
56 Johan Verstrepen (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-Colnago
57 Nico Sijmens (Bel) Landbouwkrediet-Colnago
58 Valery Kobzarenko (Ukr) Acqua & Sapone-Caffè Mokambo
59 Bogdan Bondariew (Ukr) Action
60 Mathew Hayman (Aus) Rabobank
61 Fabio Baldato (Ita) Alessio-Bianchi
62 Jan Boven (Ned) Rabobank
63 Angelo Furlan (Ita) Alessio-Bianchi
64 Hans De Clercq (Bel) Lotto-Domo
65 Michel Van Haecke (Bel)
66 Erwin Thijs (Bel)
67 Hayden Roulston (NZl) Cofidis, Le Crédit par Téléphone
68 Allan Johansen (Den) BankGiroLoterij
69 Michael Skelde (Den) Alessio-Bianchi
70 Jo Planckaert (Bel)
71 Peter Farazijn (Bel) Cofidis, Le Crédit par Téléphone
72 Chris Peers (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Wincor Nixdorf
73 Kevin Hulsmans (Bel) Quick.Step-Davitamon
74 Robbie McEwen (Aus) Lotto-Domo
75 Johan Museeuw (Bel) Quick.Step-Davitamon
76 Philippe Gilbert (Bel)
77 Jurgen Van De Walle (Bel) Chocolade Jacques-Wincor Nixdorf
78 Fred Rodriguez (USA) Acqua & Sapone-Caffè Mokambo
79 Peter Van Petegem (Bel) Lotto-Domo
80 Wim Vansevenant (Bel) Lotto-Domo
81 Anthony Geslin (Fra) Brioches la Boulangère
82 Tristan Hoffman (Ned) Team CSC
83 Julian Dean (NZl) Crédit Agricole
84 Thomas Voeckler (Fra) Brioches la Boulangère
85 Sébastien Chavanel (Fra) Brioches la Boulangère
86 Erki Pütsep (Est) AG2r Prévoyance
87 Janek Tombak (Est) Cofidis, Le Crédit par Téléphone
88 Andy De Smet (Bel)

Past winners

Dwars Door Vlaanderen/A Travers la Belgique

2003 Robbie McEwen (Aus) Lotto-Domo 
2002 Baden Cooke (Aus)
2001 Nico Eeckhout (Bel)
2000 Tristan Hoffman (Ned)
1999 (2) Johan Museeuw (Bel)
1998 Tom Steels (Bel)
1997 Andrej Tchmil (Mda)
1996 Tristan Hoffman (Ned)
1995 (2) Jelle Nijdam (Ned)
1994 Carlo Bomans (Bel)
1993 Johan Museeuw (Bel)
1992 Olaf Ludwig (Ger)
1991 (2) Eric Vanderaerden (Bel)
1990 Edwig Van Hooydonck (Bel)
1989 Dirk De Wolf (Bel)
1988 (2) Eddy Planckaert (Bel)
1987 Jelle Nijdam (Bel)
1986 Eric Vanderaerden (Bel)
1985 Eddy Planckaert (Bel)
1984 (2) Walter Planckaert (Bel)
1983 Etienne De Wilde (Bel)
1982 Jan Raas (Ned)
1981 Frank Hoste (Bel)
1980 Johan Van der Meer (Bel)
1979 Gustave Van Roosbroeck (Bel)
1978 Adri Schipper (Ned)
1977 Walter Planckaert (Bel)
1976 Willy Planckaert (Bel)
1975 Cees Priem (Ned)
1974 Louis Verreydt (Bel)
1973 Roger Loysch (Bel)
1972 Marc Demeyer (Bel)
1970 (2) Daniel Van Ryckegem (Bel)
1969 Eric Leman (Bel)
1968 (2) Walter Godefroot (Bel)
1967 Daniel Van Ryckegem (Bel)
1966 Walter Godefroot (Bel)

Dwars door Belgie

1965 Albert Hermans (Bel)
1964 Piet Van Est (Ned)
1963 Clément Roman (Bel)
1962 Martin Van Geneugden (Bel)
1961 Maurice Meuleman (Bel)
1960 Arthur Decabooter (Bel)
1959 Roger Baens (Bel)
1958 André Vlayen (Bel)
1957 Noél Fore (Bel)
1956 Lucien Demunster (Bel)
1955 (2) Alberic Schotte (Bel)
1954 Germain Derijcke (Bel)
1953 Alberic Schotte (Bel)
1952 André Maelbrancke (Bel)
1951 (2) Raymond Impanis (Bel)
1950 (2) André Rosseel (Bel)
1949 Raymond Impanis (Bel)
1948 André Rosseel (Bel)
1947 Albert Sercu (Bel)
1946 Maurice Desimplaere (Bel)
1945 b) Rik Van Steenbergen (Bel)
1945 a) Joseph Somers (Bel)

Past winners by Mario Stiehl,