Guillaume Van Keirsbulck (Wanty-Groupe Gobert) won another rainy edition of Le Samyn after he outsprinted Alex Kirsch (WB Veranclassic Aqua Protect) in a two-up sprint. Iljo Keisse (Quick-Step Floors) completed the podium in third place.
“It was a very hard race, and I survived,” said van Keirsbulck after the 202.2km race. “I’m very happy.”
A group of five found itself ahead of the pack during the first half of the race but was never given more than three minutes. The peloton reeled in the escapees at 80 kilometers from the line, allowing for new attacks to be attempted.
A lead group of seven riders went into the final 25-kilometer lap around Dour with just 16 seconds’ lead on the peloton, which was being led by Cofidis. Four of the seven were captured with about 22km to go, while Tosh Van der Sande (Lotto Soudal), Guillaume van Keirsbulck (Wanty – Groupe Gobert), and Alex Kirsch (WB Veranclassic Aqua Protect) carried on off the front.
With a little less than 12 kilometers remaining, van Keirsbulck attacked on a short cobbled climb, dropping Van der Sande. Although a chase group kept the pressure on for the two leaders, they kept their concentration and arrived to the finish line in Dour together. Kirsch initiated the sprint but saw Van Keirsbulck surpass him in the final meters.
Le Samyn 2017 results:
|1||Guillaume Van Keirsbulck (Wanty – Groupe Gobert)|
|2||Alex Kirsch (WB Veranclassic Aqua Protect)|
|3||Iljo Keisse (Quick-Step Floors)|
|4||Florian Senechal (Cofidis)|
|5||Frederik Backaert (Wanty – Groupe Gobert)|
|6||Jesper Asselman (Roompot – Nederlandse Loterij)|
|7||Frederik Frison (Lotto Soudal)|
|8||Jos Van Emden (LottoNL-Jumbo)|
|9||Bert Van Lerberghe (Sport Vlaanderen – Baloise)|
|10||Maximilian Schachmann (Quick-Step Floors)|