Peter Sagan second on Tour de Flanders, Cancellara wins - 31/3/2013
The Tour of Flanders had been billed as a something of a prize fight, and after three rounds over the Oude Kwaremont and Paterberg; it was the experienced slugger Fabian Cancellara who prevailed over the young contender Peter Sagan to claim victory, with a knock-out victory.
Before the race, no less a figure than Tom Boonen had speculated that Sagan would be the quickest man up the Paterberg, but on the short but steep wall, it was Cancellara who began to wear down his rival’s resistance. An exploratory jab suggested that Sagan’s legs were wobbling, and the decisive combination arrived near the summit.
“I was alone with Peter. I wouldn’t say that I accelerated exactly, but I put it a bit harder to see his reaction,” Cancellara said, matter-of-factly explaining how he watched Sagan’s front wheel slip out of range of his peripheral vision. “I was looking for him, I could see his wheel falling back so I just continued.”
Although the gap was just a handful of seconds when Cancellara swung left atop the Paterberg, the final 13 kilometres proved little more than a prolonged procession, a time trial to the finish, as the Swiss rider stretched out his lead to some 1:27 by the finish.
Tour de Flanders (Bruggy - Oudenaarde, 256 km): 1. Fabian Cancellara (SWISSj.) RadioShack Leopard 6:06:01 h, 2. Peter Sagan (SR) Cannondale +1:27 min, 3. Jürgen Roelandts (Belg.) Lotto Belisol +1:29, 4. Alexander Kristoff (Nr.) Kaťuša, 5. Matthieu Ladagnous (Fr.) FDJ, 6. Heinrich Haussler (Aus.) IAM Cycling ALL +1:39
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