Van Dijk wins Dwars door Vlaanderen

Ellen van Dijk (Team Sunweb) won the women’s Dwars door Vlaanderen thanks to a powerful solo attack in the final seven kilometres of the rain-soaked race.

She gradually opened a gap on a group of riders that had emerged on the Knoteberg climb after 84km of racing. They struggled to respond to her time trialling skills and van Dijk won alone.

Three-time winner Amy Pieters (Boels-Dolmans) won the sprint for second place ahead of Floortje Mackaij (Team Sunweb).

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The mid-week, semi-classic was positioned between two Women’s WorldTour races; Gent-Wevelgem, won by Marta Bastianelli on March 25, and Tour of Flanders on April 1, which offered a good test for the riders looking for success in Oudenaarde.

The women raced 117.9km starting in Tielt and finishing in Waregem. The parcours was mainly flat in the first half but hit the bergs mid-race with Kluisberg, Knokteberg, Vossenhol and Nokereberg climbs, and the cobblestoned roads Holstraat and Herlegemstraat.

Van Dijk was in a late-race lead group that included Pieters and Mackaij, along with Eugenia Bujak, Annemiek Van Vleuten, Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio and Kasia Niewiadoma. They held a 20-second lead over the field in the closing kilometres.

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