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Brussel-Opwijk - 1.6

Belgium, March 2, 2003

2002 Results    Results    Past winners

Finnish finish

Finnish rider Jukka Vastaranta (Rabobank) has won the 53rd edition of Brussel-Opwijk, a 144 km race for U23 and Elite riders without contract. Vastaranta ended the race with a four second advantage to Frenchman Cedric Coutouly, with Belgian Rik Van Isterdael in third at 16 seconds.

The race was run under poor weather conditions, with rain accompanying the riders for most of the day. A leading group formed with Vastaranta, Scheuneman, Gilling, Hesjedal, Sutherland (all Rabobank), Coutouly, Bastiaens, Heijboer, Rooyakkers, Thuaux and Roessler. The 11 riders held a minute's advantage over the peloton, which did not give up the chase. In the closing kilometres, Van Isterdael and Nico Indekeu closed the gap to the leaders.

Vastaranta attacked in the final kilometre to win the race, with only Coutouly able to go with him. Van Isterdael won the sprint for third.

Results - 144 km

1 Jukka Vastaranta (Fin) Rabobank                   3.26.26
2 Cedric Coutouly (Fra) Credit Agricole                0.04
3 Rik Van Isterdael (Bel) Daikin Team                  0.16
4 Kenny De Block (Bel) Prik & Tik
5 Niko Indekeu (Bel) Team Down Under
6 Ryder Hejesdal (Can) Rabobank
7 Sebastien Rosseler (Bel) Quick Step
8 Bastiaan Gilling (Ned) Rabobank
9 Piet Rooijakkers (Bel) Lowik Meubelen
10 Phil Thaux (Aus) Team Down Under
11 Rory Sutherland (Aus) Team Down Under
12 Mathieu Heijboer (Ned) Lowijk Meubelen
13 Koen Barbe (Bel) Team Deschacht Granville           0.40
14 Niels Scheuneman (Ned) Rabobank
15 Joeri Meyen (Bel) Think Media                       0.57
16 Cody Stevenson (Aus) Team Down Under                1.00
17 Andy Van Houdt (Bel) Palmans Collstrop
18 Kenny Lisabeth (Bel) Beveren 2000
19 V Beyens (Bel) Quick Step
20 Hans Bloks (Ned) Lowik Meubelen
21 Erwin Vermeulen (Bel) Hand in Hand Baal
22 Andy Lannoo (Bel) Firestone - Lombarden
23 Kurt Dierickx (Bel) Palmans Collstrop
24 Arne Kornegour (Ned) Lowijk Meubelen
25 Gil Suray (Bel) Daikin team
26 Kevin Desmedt (Bel) Beveren 2000
27 Kenny Van Braeckel (Bel) Think Media
28 Steven De Decker (Bel) Go Pass ABX
29 Steven Thijs (Bel) John Saey CT
30 Christof Beddegenoodts (Bel) Think Media
31 Kristof Sels (Bel) AC Antwerp
32 Andy Dierickx (Bel) Daikin Team
33 Pieter Ghyllebert (Bel) Firestone - Lombarden
34 Pieter Deryck (Bel) Firestone - Lombarden
35 Davy De Leener (Bel) Daikin Team
36 James Maedly (Aus) Team Down Under
37 Hervé Duclos Lasalle (Bel) Credit AGricole
38 Peter Ronsse (Bel) Beveren 2000
39 Pieter Uytterhoeven (Bel) Think Media
40 Frederik Veuchelen (Bel) Think Media
41 Geoffrey Lequatre (Fra) Credit Agricole
42 Theo Eltink (Ned) Rabobank
43 Steven Caethoven (Bel) Go Pass ABX
44 Pieter Weening (Ned) Rabobank
45 Sven Deweerdt (Bel) Team Down Under
46 Preben Van Hecke (Bel) Quick Step
47 Norbert Poels (Bel) Lowik Meubelen
48 Rieno Stofferis (Bel) John Saey CT
49 Frederik Jouan (Fra) Asfra Racing team

Starters: 190
Classified: 49


1 Rabobank                                         10.19.50
2 Team Down Under                                      1.00
3 Lowijk Meubelen
4 Credit Agricole                                      1.32
5 Daikin Team                                          1.44
6 Quick Step
7 Think Media                                          2.25
8 Beveren 2000                                         2.28
9 Firestone De Lombarden

Past winners

2002 Eric Leblacher (Fra) Credit Agricole Espoirs
2001 Gert Steegmans (Bel)
2000 Tim Meeusen (Bel)
1999 Kevin Hulsmans (Bel)
1998 Christoph Roodhooft (Bel)
1997 Marc Lotz (Ned)
Past winners by Mario Stiehl,