Tim Wellens (Lotto – Soudal) gets the succes of the 2018 Brabantse Pijl, also known as Brabant Arrow. The Belgian seized the right moment and attacked with 7 kilometers to go, opened a significant gap on the group and crossed the finish line solo with his right hand up to the sky with thought towards his deceased colleague Michael Goolaerts. Wellens, who has already won three times in this season, took the success over former winner of the Brabantse Pijl Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain – Merida), who won the bunch sprint over Tiesj Benoot, making the podium for two thirds composed of Lotto – Soudal representatives.
Jack Haig (Mitchelton – Scott) and Tosh Van der Sande (Lotto – Soudal) livened up the last stages of racing by attacking with over 60 kilometers remaining. Several riders tried to bridge the gap to the breakaway but nobody managed to reduce the leaders’ advantage until Sonny Colbrelli moved firsthand on Hertstraat climb after his teammates have set the tempo at the front of the group for several kilometers. The Italian didn’t chase Haig and Van der Sande but contributed to reduce the gap. The peloton reeled in the lead of two with 11 kilometers to go and as soon as the chase took place Lotto – Soudal moved a counter-attack together with a dozen of riders from which, with 7 kilometers to go, Tim Wellens attacked. The chase didn’t succeed in jumping across the gap and the Belgian hit the flame rouge with a 20-seconds-wide advantage that allowed Wellens to take the victory.
Last but not least, it bust be underlined the touching moment that took place this morning at the start. All the Veranda’s Willems – Crelan riders moved to the starting line all together side by side in order to commemorate their teammate Michael Goolaerts, who passed away on Sunday evening.
Brabantse Pijl 2018 Results
1 WELLENS Tim Lotto Soudal
2 COLBRELLI Sonny Bahrain Merida Pro Cycling Team
3 BENOOT Tiesj Lotto Soudal
4 SERRY Pieter Quick-Step Floors
5 TRATNIK Jan CCC Sprandi Polkowice
6 PASQUALON Andrea Wanty – Groupe Gobert
7 TEUNS Dylan BMC Racing Team
8 DUIJN Huub Vérandas Willems-Crelan
9 SPRENGERS Thomas Sport Vlaanderen – Baloise
10 IMPEY Daryl Mitchelton-Scott