The women’s race lasted a bit longer than usual, therefore I almost missed the start. Zdenek Stybar started out fast at the beginning of the race.
By now the mud got so thick that there were quite long sections where the riders were forced to jump off their bikes and run them through. This photo of Sven Nys was taken again with the Canon EF 300 f2.8 lens and the frame is a bit too narrow for my liking but as I said in the previous post, I need to learn the ins and outs of this lens.
Stybar and teammate Bart Wellens (9) rode together for a long time in the front of the pack. “It was good to have my teammate [Wellens] with, it meant a great deal of help”, he later added.
Fashion-conscious John Gadret
Stybar enters the sandpit, Wellens is not far behind.
US rider Jonathan Page jumps through the wooden obstacles.
Same part of the course, a different angle. This was the antepenultimate lap, Stybar was in the front on his own and he managed to put a substantial gap between him and his chasers.
Niels Albert rode very well for the first part of the race but his injury certainly took its toll and he dropped back, lap by lap.
Another win for Stybar.
Klass Vantornout finished second and he didn’t seem to be pleased with that result.
Niels Albert arrived to the finish line almost in tears. He knew he was going to lose the overall leader position and now he is well behind Stybar.
Naturally, the Stybar supporters were very pleased with the results.
Stybar in the overall leader’s white jersey – for the first time in the season. I might need to do some digging, but I think, this was the first time ever. Well done!