Brabantse Pijl: Demi Vollering soloes to victory

The SD Worx rider went solo with 10km to go, wrapping up her first win of the 2022 season.

Photo: Luc Claessen/Getty Images

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After losing out in a photo finish in 2021, Demi Vollering (SD Worx) made sure there was no repeat as she rode solo to win Brabantse Pijl and take her first victory of the season.

Vollering got away from a reduced peloton with Pauliena Rooijakkers (Canyon-SRAM) with just under 30 kilometers to go. After riding together for some time, Vollering attacked on the final ascent of the Moskesstraat with 10km to go, dropping a slowing Rooijakkers.

The SD Worx rider powered away over the top of the climb and would not be seen again by her rivals until the finish line. Kasia Niewiadoma (Canyon-SRAM) attacked from a chase group to take second with Liane Lippert (DSM) rounding out the podium.

How it happened

The riders set out from Lennik under wet and cloudy skies, setting off for Overijse via a 141km parcours that tackled 24 climbs. No time was wasted in getting the action underway and the racing was as tough as the weather conditions it was under.

A quick pace right from the beginning made it very difficult for a breakaway to get off the front and, indeed, there was no early break to be reeled back. Instead, it was a race of attrition with the relentless moves off the front sapping the energy of the riders and whittling down the bunch at each moment.

The key moves began to come as the race entered the final 60km with a big group led by Marlen Reusser taking a small advantage. With Trek-Segafredo missing out on the move, it was deemed far too dangerous to be allowed much room and it was eventually brought back.

However, it and the subsequent moves continued to take chunks out of what was left of the peloton, sapping the reserves of those that remained. Eventually, with 28km to go the elastic snapped.

A move by Rooijakkers and Vollering went clear, and it seemed that nobody could respond. Labous eventually set off in chase of the pair, which was working well as it tried to hold off the peloton behind. Coryn Labecki (Jumbo-Visma) also made a concerted effort to bridge the gap.

Despite her superior sprint Vollering used the Moskesstraat to drop Rooijakkers and solo to the line. She quickly built an unassailable lead as the tiring Rooijakkers, brought back by Labous and a group of three others — which included Niewiadoma and Reusser — that had joined her.

Vollering had a comfortable lead of nearly 45 seconds as she hit the final kilometer and she had plenty of time to celebrate as she crossed the line. Meanwhile, Niewiadoma attacked from the chasing group on the final rise towards the line, taking Lippert with her. The Polish rider took second place as Lippert ran out of steam in the sprint to the line.

Brabantse Pijl Women results

  1. Demi Vollering (SD Worx), 3:37:59
  2. Kasia Niewiadoma (Canyon-SRAM), at :22
  3. Liane Lippert (Team DSM), at s.t.
  4. Marlen Reusser (SD Worx), at :27
  5. Juliette Labous (Team DSM), at :44
  6. Pauliene Rooijakkers (Canyon-SRAM), at :58
  7. Silvia Persico (Valcar-Travel & Service), at 1:02
  8. Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio (SD Worx) s.t.
  9. Sofia Bertizzolo (UAE Team ADQ), at s.t.
  10. Alexandra Manley (BikeExchange-Jayco), at s.t.

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