Liège-Bastogne-Liège: Remco Evenepoel wins Belgian classic

Liège-Bastogne-Liège: Remco Evenepoel wins Belgian classic
Belgian Remco Evenepoel of Soudal Quick-Step. Credit: Belga / Jaspar Jacobs

The road cycling World Champion Remco Evenepoel on Sunday won the major Liège-Bastogne-Liège race, proving dominant in the closing kilometres of the 258.5km classic.

In his first race of the season on Belgian soil, the 23-year-old Belgian thrilled spectators on the undulating course to win "La Doyenne" for the second consecutive year. Widely predicted to be a showdown between Evenepoel and the supreme Slovenian talent Tadej Pogačar (24), the latter came down in a crash 84 kilometres in and was forced to abandon the race, later diagnosed with a wrist fracture.

Conditions started dry but rain soon came, forcing riders to use extreme caution whilst still tackling the treacherous course with an average speed of around 40kph.

Evenepoel was supported by his six Soudal - Quickstep teammates, a strong roster that featured two-time World Champion Julien Alaphilippe. Whilst a select group of riders broke away from the main peloton earlier on in the race, the main bunch was kept under control by Soudal - Quickstep.

With Pogačar out of the running, it was only a question of when the young Belgian would launch his attack, eventually doing so 30km from the finish when he left young British rider Tom Pidcock (Ineos Grenadiers) behind.

From thereon it was an impressive solo effort to the finish line, with Evenepoel ending with a 1:06 minute advantage over Pidcock in second and Santiago Butrago in third.

Soudal Quick-Step riders and Belgian Remco Evenepoel of Soudal Quick-Step pictured in action. Credit: Belga / Jaspar Jacobs

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