AG Insurance-NXTG U23 rider Eline van Rooijen scored her first UCI victory today at the Grote Prijs Yvonne Reynders. The 1.2 race, being held for the second time, fortunately, was able actually to finish this season. Last year’s inaugural race had to be stopped midway through after a thunderstorm drowned the riders with standing water and barriers around the finish line blew over. Today’s race was an altogether much sunnier affair, won from the break by the 21-year-old Dutch rider.
It’s been a strong year for Eline van Rooijen, winner at the national level at Zuiderzee, she has also come close to wins at the UCI level with top-10s at Veenendaal-Veenendaal, Trofee Maarten Wynants, and Ekeren-Deurne. She got herself into a strong breakaway of originally 9 riders and could contest the final sprint as the group stayed clear.
A slow start initially broke into life as Sanne Cant initiated a sprint for the first intermediate point and from there a counter-attack of 6 riders went clear and quickly got an advantage. Evy Kuijpers, Elisabeth Ebras, Fien Masure, Nadia Quagliotto, Lara Crestanello and Kirstie van Haaften were at the front of the race. The peloton allowed them to get a gap of around 90 seconds before the peloton began to close back up. At around 20 seconds, riders tried to bridge over and a chase group including Julie de Wilde, Sanne Cant, Katrijn de Clercq, Aileen Schweikart and Lisa van Belle almost managed to make it across. As it was, only Sanne Cant and Marieke Meert (bridging later) were able to make it to the front group, with Fien Masure later dropping back.
Newly swelled, the gap went out again to around a minute before once again the peloton worked to close it up. They almost did so but for a crash in the peloton. From there, the bunch’s appetite for the chase rather withered. The gap only went up in the final 10 kilometres. Eline van Rooijen was able to outsprint the local rider, Sanne Cant, with Kirstie van Haaften finishing 3rd.
2023 Grote Prijs Yvonne Reynders result
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