Belgian cyclist Julie De Wilde claimed victory in the SPAR Flanders Diamond Tour (1.1), outpacing Austrian Kathrin Schweinberger and Katrijn De Clercq in the final sprint. De Clercq is a potential madison replacement for Shari Bossuyt, so good form here might see her partner Lotte Koepcky on the track.
The race took place on a highly active Sunday in the vicinity of Nijlen, a town in the province of Antwerp, Belgium. Participants in the SPAR Flanders Diamond Tour tackled a circuit that was notably flat, running multiple local laps through the town of Nijlen. Following a distance of nearly 137 kilometres, anticipation built for a possible mass sprint finish. Compared to yesterday’s Dwars Door het Hageland, this race promised to be a much more simple affair.
Several prominent sprinters lined up at the start of the race, including Marta Bastianelli, Anniina Ahtosalo and Eleonora Camilla Gasparrini. Indeed, after over three hours of competition, the race culminated in a sprint. Although many spectators’ attention was drawn to Bastianelli, it was the 20-year-old De Wilde who clinched the victory, proving too quick for Schweinberger and De Clercq. Bastianelli finished the race in fourth place as her career begins to creep closer to its end in a few weeks.
The win at the SPAR Flanders Diamond Tour marks a significant moment for De Wilde. The rider was sidelined for a period during the spring due to a severe fall in the Classic Brugge-De Panne. Initially, hospital evaluations suggested a crack in her shoulder blade; however, subsequent assessments confirmed it was a break. Following an extended recovery period, De Wilde returned to competition in late May, participating in the Thüringen Ladies Tour.
2023 Spar Flanders Diamond Tour result
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