Rowe 15th at E3 Harelbeke

24 Mar 2017

Rowe 15th at E3 Harelbeke

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Luke Rowe led Team Sky team home in 15th place at E3 Harelbeke as he continued his consistent run of strong rides in the early-season Classics.

The race was blown apart on the famed Taaienberg climb 72 kilometres from the finish and, while Rowe and team-mate Gianni Moscon were able to follow the early moves, they soon found themselves in the second group on the road.

A strong selection containing eventual race winner Greg van Avermaet (BMC) went away and the gap to the lead group quickly grew on a tough day in Belgium.
A stinging attack from Philippe Gilbert saw the front group splinter

A stinging attack from Philippe Gilbert saw the front group splinter

In the end it was Van Avermaet, Philippe Gilbert (Quick-Step Floors) and Oliver Naesen (AG2R La Mondiale) who duked it out for the win, with the BMC man sprinting to the title.

Ian Stannard suffered a unfortunate puncture at the foot of the Kortekeer just ahead of the Taaienberg which, despite Owain Doull’s best efforts to pace him back, put paid to Stannard’s chances.

Rowe came home in a star-studded 15-man group a minute back on Van Avermaet in what is another encouraging result for the Welshman, ahead of the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix, on the back of sixth at Omloop Het Nieuwsblad and third at Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne.
Van Avermaet celebrates another fine Classics victory

Van Avermaet celebrates another fine Classics victory