Development Arnaud De Lie wins U23 edition of Omloop Het Nieuwsblad
Arnaud De Lie won the U23 edition of Omloop Het Nieuwsblad. The 19-year-old rider from the Lotto Soudal Development Team had his teammate Milan Fretin (20) by his side on the podium, as he finished second. Nathan Vandepitte claimed the third place.
It’s a happy Arnaud De Lie who tells what happened in the race: “Liam Slock joined an early breakaway, but unfortunately he had a mechanical which forced him to let the others go. That meant our team had to ride in the peloton. After 75 kilometers we got to the hardest part of the course with the hill section and cobblestones. We were positioned on the first rows of the bunch. When the peloton split, four of us were riding in the first group of about twenty riders. That was a good situation, but it all came back together. On the last of two local laps Ramses Debruyne and Lennert Van Eetvelt controlled the bunch. Also SEG Racing did part of the work. When a rider attacked on the Kleiberg, Lennert could rapidly catch him. On the Berendries Lennert raised the pace, so no-one would try to escape.”
And so the riders were heading for a sprint in Zottegem.
“The team had done an excellent job to bring me in the best possible position to the sprint”, says Arnaud De Lie. “Milan Fretin launched the sprint at the perfect moment and all I needed to do was to come out of his wheel. That Milan still became second and stood on the podium too, made it perfect for our team. Tactically, we didn’t make any mistakes and we had control of the race. It’s wonderful that we could finish it off this way. It means a lot to me to have won the U23 edition of Omloop Het Nieuwsblad. It’s a classic and I love this kind of course. This victory feels amazing.”
Arnaud De Lie’s next race is the Tour of South-Bohemia in Czech Republic from Thursday 9 September until Sunday 12 September.
Line-up : Arnaud De Lie, Ramses Debruyne, Milan Fretin, Thibaut Ponsaerts, Liam Slock and Luca Van Boven.
Sports director: Kurt Van de Wouwer
Photo: Sophie Richez