Jakob Fuglsang (Astana) finally stood on the the top step of an Ardennes podium after a storming ride to claim victory in Liege-Bastogne-Liege. Despite the new-style finish that was devised to promote earlier action, the decisive attack came on the final climb of the Côte de la Roche-aux-Faucons. By the end of the long uphill drag, Fuglsang had broken clear of his shadow, Davide Formolo (BORA-hansgrohe) and even when he hit a slippery patch on the frenetic descent (which nearly gave all of Twitter a heart attack) he kept his cool and used the shot of adrenaline to keep the power through the pedals all the way to the line to take his first Monument. Formolo held on for second while his teammate Max Schachmann won the sprint for third. In the women’s edition Annemiek Van Vleuten (Mitchelton-Scott) carried out a magnificent solo raid after attacking on La Redoute with 32km to go. Floortje Mackaij (Sunweb) and Demi Vollering (Parkhotel Valkenburg) made it an all-Dutch podium with second and third places respectively.
It was Ardennes Week, which usually doesn’t do much for me but the QuickStep wins in both Fleche and LBL made up for that! Of course, no matter what the race, we can always count on the Twitterstream to either distract or rev up the mood.
Jungels BOB JUNGELS ignited Liege-Bastogne-Liege when he attacked over the Roche-aux-Faucons, and time-trialled his way to his first Monument. The Luxembourg national champion soloed across the line a full 37 seconds ahead of Rusty Woods and Romain Bardet, who’d finally countered in the dying kilometres with the former winning the two-up sprint.
History repeated itself as Olympic champion and women’s WorldTour leader Anna van der Breggen took back-to-back victories in the women’s race, completing another clean sweep in the Ardennes classics. She caught and passed breakaway rider Amanda Spratt in the final kilometres to take a solo victory. Spratt finished second while her teammate Annemiek van Vleuten rounded out the podium.