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Tom Pidcock sprints to victory in Amstel Gold Race

Tom Pidcock sprints to victory in Amstel Gold Race

After two previous podiums, Tom Pidcock won Sunday’s 58th Amstel Gold Race in the Limburg region of the Netherlands. The Brit triumphed from a four-up sprint, his quartet a decanting of a breakaway that formed with 28 km remaining. Pidcock adds his prize to last year’s Strade Bianche. Mathieu van der Poel came in 22nd.

Pidcock celebrates with his dogs.

The Course

The riders were challenged by 33 hills over 255.2 km, with the first passage of the famed Cauberg (600 metres of 9.2 percent) positioned at kilometre 178. With 19 km remaining, the peloton would face it again. After that came the Geulhemmerberg (800 metres of 6.4 percent) and the Bemelerberg (600 metres of 5.3 percent), the latter cresting 5 km from the line in Berg en Terblijt.

During the race there was a neutralization in the women’s race, which necessitated the men’s peloton skipping the Bergseweg–climb three–and reaching the Korenweg via an alternative route.

The first passage of the Cauberg wasn’t particularly hot, with a breakaway quartet up the road. By the time the race crossed the finish line for the first time with 79 km and 11 climbs to go, the fugitives were within sight and they were soon sopped up. Lidl-Trek led the way up the first passage of Bemelerberg.

On the 13 km gap between Bemelerberg and Loorberg, Soudal-Quick Step’s Louis Vervaeke tried twice to fly the coop. His second bid succeeded when he received two reinforcements. Behind there was a constant struggle to control the front of the peloton.

Michal Kwiatkowski made a move on the Gulperberg, drawing a reaction from van der Poel and Matteo Jorgenson.

Everyone was entertained.

The cows were split between Visma-LAB fans and DSM-Firmenich PostNL supporters.

With Fromberg looming and Vervaeke no longer in the breakaway he instigated, Jorgenson tried to bridge with Andreas Kron. Although it was 6.8 percent over 1.1 km, Keutenberg had some very steep grades. Pidcock was part of dozen-strong, 11-team breakaway that hit it 20 seconds ahead of the peloton. With 27 km and three climbs remaining, this dozen had a 30-second gap.

The Cauberg

The Pidcock group hit the…

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