Kirsten Wild has made history being the first rider to win Gent-Wevelgem twice, her win comes three days after winning Team WNT Rotor’s first UCI WWT race Driedaagse De Panne on Thursday. Showing how smoothly her transition from track rider back to racing on the road has gone.
Starting in Ypres and finishing in Wevelgem, the race covered 136.9 km with Kirsten Wild, Lisa Brennauer, Gabrielle Pilote, Sarah Rijkes, Claudia Koster and Lara Vieceli on the start line. The main difficulties between the start and the finish were the Baneberg, Kemmelberg, and Monteberg, each of which had to be climbed twice, and two "Plugstreet" gravel sections.
Wild who last won Gent Wevelgem in 2013 timed her sprint to perfection and showed the speed that has won her races throughout her career. But 2019 wasn't an easy ride two punctures in the latter end of the race for Lisa Brennauer meant it was touch and go whether Wild would have her lead out partner at the finish. Showing strong legs Brennauer fought back to drop Wild off in a good position and the rest was left up to our Dutch sprinter.
Speaking to Wild after the race;
“I’m really proud I won Gent Wevelgem, it was a tough sprint. I lost my rider Lisa for the lead out. She punctured twice so she didn’t have the legs anymore, but she put me in the right position and I just had to finish it off. The signs with the metres came close, and I thought woah this 150m I need to go now. It’s a big one, Gent Wevelgem is one of the bigger races for women, after a hard race and a long season already on the track, I’m really happy, my team mates helped me in the final, so we’re happy with this win.”
Unfortunately, with the tough nature of the classics our first casualty was Claudia Koster who crashed out and has a broken hand, bruising and abrasions. We wish her the speediest of recoveries and hope to see her back racing as soon as possible.
A great start to our 2019 campaign and with some continued team effort and a bit of luck on our side we are hoping for more success in the coming weeks. In the UCI Women’s World Tour rankings, Kirsten moves up to 2nd overall after her two wins, only 10 points behind leader Marta Bastianelli. Our next race is the sixth round of the UCI WWT, Tour of Flanders which takes place on Sunday.
You can watch the final 1kilometre here: