The Grand Prix of Wallonia was won by the Frenchman Laporte. He made it on top of the Citadel of Namur ahead of his compatriot Warren Barguil and Tosh Van der Sande. Jelle Vanendert (36) put an end to his career this afternoon with stage win in the Tour de France (2011) as the absolute highlight.
The continuous rainfall made it a difficult race that was initially colored by a courageous foursome including our compatriots Laurenz Rex and Jens Reynders. But the peloton didn’t give up and with more than seventy kilometers to go, the early breakaways were ready for the effort and the final could begin.
And it turned out to be a fascinating final in which both the World Cup-goers – Benoot and another strong Campenaerts – and the World Cup-passers – Wellens, Vanmarcke and Van Avermaet – shake the tree vigorously. A further selection was made on the Tienne aux Pierres but it quickly became clear that the second ascent of the Citadel would make the decision. Ilan Van Wilder also showed himself in the final, but it was mainly Victor Campenaerts who stirred. The man from Antwerp once again underlined his excellent condition.
Citadel of Namur
But as always, the final ascent of the Citadel had to bring the showdown. A late dropout by Louis Vervaeke was neutralized, resulting in a sprint uphill by a select leading group. Warren Barguil launched his sprint from afar but was outflanked. There was no measure of the Frenchman Christophe Laporte in it. He beat his compatriot Warren Barguil and Tosh Van der Sande. Both Laporte and Van der Sande will become teammates of Wout van Aert at Jumbo-Visma next season.