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2014 Amstel Gold Race



Philippe Gilbert succeeded in riding clear after the final climb of this year’s Amstel Gold Race to claim solo victory in today’s race.  

Just as the peloton finally managed to reel in what remained of a small breakaway group on the final ascent of the Cauberg, Gilbert surged – subsequently opening up a slight advantage of a few bike lengths. And, despite the best efforts of a pursuit that was led by Michal Kwiatkowski, there was no retrieving the Belgian rider who crossed the line in a solo victory.  

How the Race Unfolded

Today’s 252 kilometer race from Maastricht – Valkenburg claimed a host of victims; namely Joaquim Rodriguez, Andy Schleck and Geraint Thomas who were among those forced to abandon as a result of crashes. 

With 30 kilometers remaining, a breakaway group containing Preben Van Hecke, Christophe Riblon and Nicola Boem solidified a slight advantage over the field.  

At one point, Thomas Voeckler initiated an attack from within the ranks of the chase in an attempt to bridge himself to the leaders. In turn, the French rider was quickly followed by Zdenek Stybar, Greg Van Avermaet, Tim Wellens, Pieter Weening, Jakob Fuglsang, Alexandr Kolobnev, Bjorn Leukemans and Paul Martens.

Up front, Boem lost contact with this companions on the climb of the Keutenberg, leaving Van Hecke and Riblon alone out front. 

With 24 kilometers remaing, the lead duo was still clinging to a 90 second lead, as they crossed the finish line for the first time during the final circuit.

In the meantime, Voeckler’s chase group had dwindled down considerably – with only a 24 second lead over the main field. 

With 15 kilometers remaining, the leader’s gap had been reduced to just 40 seconds of over Voeckler’s, with a looming peloton just behind them. 

As the race entered into the final 11 kilometers, with the exception of Van Avermaet and Fuglsang, all of the Voeckler group had been absorbed by the peloton, with the remaining leaders just seconds ahead of the pursuit.   

Back in the main field, Garmin took up the pace setting as the race approached the penultimate climb of the Bernelerberg. It was then, that Giampaolo Caruso managed to ride clear of the chase group and latch onto the leaders.

In response, Van Avermaet initiated a counter attack of his own. However, the Belgian rider got nowhere. And, shortly thereafter, all of the remaining leaders were reeled in by the peloton, as the race headed into the final 7 kilometers in what was shaping up to be a bunch sprint finale. 

From there, Orica-GreenEdge came to the front to take up the pace setting on the final ascent of the Cauberg. And, as teams were jostling for position along the descent, Gilbert suddenly surged from within the group. 

As the Belgian rider crossed under the final kilometer banner, Simon Gerrans, Alejandro Valverde and Kwiatkowski pursued in earnest. However, the trio proved to be no match for Gilbert, who proceeded to cross the finish line in a solo victory.  

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CVabm9lY3X0

Top 10 Finishers 

1 Philippe Gilbert (Bel) BMC Racing Team
2 Jelle Vanendert (Bel) Lotto Belisol
3 Simon Gerrans (Aus) Orica Greenedge
4 Alejandro Valverde Belmonte (Spa) Movistar Team
5 Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Omega Pharma – Quick-Step Cycling Team
6 Simon Geschke (Ger) Team Giant-Shimano
7 Bauke Mollema (Ned) Belkin Pro Cycling Team
8 Enrico Gasparotto (Ita) Astana Pro Team
9 Daniel Moreno Fernandez (Spa) Team Katusha

10 Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn) Team Europcar

Amstel Gold Race 2014 Teams

AG2R LA MONDIALE FRA  ProTeam

ASTANA PRO TEAM KAZ  ProTeam

BELKIN-PRO CYCLING TEAM NED  ProTeam

BMC RACING TEAM USA  ProTeam

CANNONDALE ITA  ProTeam

FDJ.fr FRA  ProTeam

GARMIN SHARP USA  ProTeam

LAMPRE-MERIDA ITA  ProTeam

LOTTO BELISOL BEL  ProTeam

MOVISTAR TEAM ESP  ProTeam

OMEGA PHARMA – QUICK-STEP CYCLING TEAM BEL  ProTeam

ORICA GreenEDGE AUS  ProTeam

TEAM EUROPCAR FRA  ProTeam

TEAM GIANT-SHIMANO NED  ProTeam

TEAM KATUSHA RUS  ProTeam

TEAM SKY GBR  ProTeam

INKOFF-SAXO RUS  ProTeam

TREK FACTORY RACING USA  ProTeam

ANDRONI GIOCATTOLI – VENEZUELA ITA  Pro Continental

CCC POLSAT POLKOWICE POL  Pro Continental

IAM CYCLING SUI  Pro Continental

TOPSPORT VLAANDEREN-BALOISE BEL  Pro Continental

WANTY – GROUPE GOBERT BEL  Pro Continental

BARDIANI VALVOLE – CSF INOX ITA  Pro Continental


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