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Wout van Aert wins Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne and delivers Visma |  Rent a bike for the perfect weekend

Wout van Aert wins Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne and delivers Visma | Rent a bike for the perfect weekend

Sunday, February 25, 2024 at 4:43 pm

Wout van Aert took his first Classic win in 2024. Visma Leader | In the Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne final, Lease a Bike defeated fellow ride mates Tim Wellens and Oier Lazkano in a sprint of three. The trio drove more than eighty kilometers forward.

On day two of the Flemish opening weekend, we set off from East Flemish Ghent and Ninove on Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, to the town of Kortrijk on the West Flemish Golden Spurs for the start and neighboring Kurne for the traditional finish on the Brugsesteenweg. In between, about 196 kilometers await, with a difficult mountainous area around Le Pays de Collines in the middle of the semi-classic region. The program had a total of thirteen descents, the last seven of which took place over a distance of about forty kilometres.

Due to a fairly strong headwind in the first two hours of the race, the early flight took a long time. The wind wasn't exactly stirring attacks, but on the fourth climb of the day, Dries de Bondt (Decathlon-AG2R), Jasper de Buest (Lotto Destiny), Fran Miholjevic (Bahrain Victorious) and Luc Roux (INEOS Grenadiers) went anyway. Just a little further forward. In no time they had a nice three-minute gap.

Furthermore, the opening hours were marked by plenty of tension and minor downfalls, including shadow favorites Gerben Theissen, Biniyam Girmay (Intermarché-Wanté), Jordi Meeus (Bora-Hansgrohe), and Per Strand Hagenis (Visma | Bike Rental). They were all able to continue on their way, but Thijssen didn't seem to be in good shape. In the Peloton Visma | Lease a Bike has now taken over. They also sensed that the first difficult descent of the day was coming with Hameau des Papins.

An early journey that took a long time – Photo: Cor Vos

Secession at Le Pays de Collines
However, the yellow jerseys waited until the next downhill, Le Bourliquet, to really shake the tree. It was Woot Fan Art Himself Who opened the discussions, under his impetus, the peloton quickly split into several pieces. The riders at the back, including young names like Jasper Stuyven (Liddle Trek) and Luc Lamberti (Soudal Quick Step), seemed to stand still.

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In the lead was the Visma| It stands to reason that renting a bike is the best upholsterer. In addition to Van Aart, European champion Christophe Laporte, Dutch champion Dylan van Baerle and Matthieu Jorgenson also had their noses in the window. We also honored Julien Alaphilippe (Soudal Quick Step), Biniyam Girmay (Intermarche-Wante), Toms Scoggins (Lidl-Trek), Victor Campenaerts (Lotto Destiny), Pierre Guthrat (Decatlon-AG2R), Matej Mohorek (Bahrain Victorious), Dylan Teunis (Israel-Premier Tech), Auer Lazcano (Movistar), Tim Wellens (UAE) and Lawrence Pithe (Groupama-FDJ). Solid elite group with many big names.

On the later stones of Mont Saint Laurent, Van Aert decided that this group was still too large. At the bottom, only Lazcano, Willens and Pethy were able to hitch their wagon. At the top of the ramp, Van Aart briefly doubted whether this was the ideal situation for his team. The Kempen compatriot sat in the back seat for a moment, but the other three immediately prepared for a full circle. The twenty seconds the four spent together on the stones ended very quickly.

To Corny with the trio
Van Aert also changed tack soon after that and did his homework when it came to the head of the business. What's more, on the last slope of the day, Côte de Trieu, the leader of Visma| Rent a bike again with equipment. This time the speedy Pithie was the winner. Lazkano was almost outbid as well, but fought back. This left them in front with three left, 69 flat kilometers towards Corneille.

Van Aart, Wellens and Lazcano were the tough guys – Photo: Cor Vos

Meanwhile, disagreements continued to grow. On the counter-attack, Jorgenson and Mohoric – joined by the later fallen Piethe – were stopped in just under two minutes, while we had to find the rest of the previous leading group in about three or four minutes. In short, we had to look for a winner between the trio of Wellens-Lazcano-Van Aert.

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The pioneering trio has worked together flawlessly for a remarkably long time. The tailwind in the final pushed them forward at a high pace. Even Lazcano, who was inferior on paper, continued to take his turn, on the advice of Movistar team leader Jürgen Roelandsz. It was only when Wellens stealthily attacked on the left side of the road four kilometers from the finish that things got a little messy. However, Van Aart responded quickly, while Lazcano had to give up a few metres.

Out of desperation, the Spanish champion was allowed to return again. Immediately after the final turn, he made his expected attack. However, it opened the race in perfect fashion for Wout van Aert, who quickly caught Lazkano's wheel again. Van Aart then made a short final sprint and did not see Wellens come alongside him. After Jan Tratnik's win at Omloop yesterday, Van Aert made the perfect opening weekend for Visma Forces | Rent a bike.