Great Britain Cycling Team’s Owain Doull finished fourth in the under-23 edition of the Tour of Flanders as Dylan Groenewegen of the Netherlands took the win.
Doull was among a Great Britain team of Jon Dibben, Alistair Slater, Chris Lawless, Scott Davies and Tao Geoghegan Hart and just missed out on the podium, narrowly beaten to the line by Teisj Benoot of Belgium, who pushed Doull hard for the win in the recent Triptyque des Monts et Chateaux last week.
Norway’s Kristoffer Skjerping was second.
Tao Geoghegan Hart was also in the front group, finishing 15th, an excellent ride from the first year under-23 rider, who came third in last year’s Paris-Roubaix Juniors. Hart was drafted into the squad on Friday to replace Germain Burton, who hadn’t recovered sufficiently from the three-day, four-stage Tryptique.
Alistair Slater was next Brit home, in 46th place, with Scott Davies 63th and Jon Dibben 97th. Chris Lawless was among 56 riders who did not complete the tough 165.7km course, which featured 14 trademark Flandrian climbs including ascents of the Eikenberg, Mollenberg and Taaienberg.
After the race Doull Tweeted: "4th today at u23 tour of Flanders. Would have been nice to be on the podium but still a solid ride. Next up is Cote Picardie in Wednesday."
Doull later added: "Again great riding by all the lads helping me out in the race. Especially @taogeoghegan in the final, boys got some form."
Hart himself Tweeted later: "Really happy to help @owaindoull to 4th. Dropped him off 300 to go & rolled in 15th so dece day out at DeRonde. Love racing here in Belgie."
Wednesday’s Cote du Picarde is the second of three back-to-back UCI Under 23 Nations’ Cup events this week, with the ZLM Tour on 19 April.
1. Dylan Groenewegen (Netherlands)
2. Kristoffer Skjerping (Norway)
3. Tiesj Benoot (Belgium)
4. Owain Doull (Great Britain)
15. Tao Geoghegan Hart (Great Britain)
46. Alistair Slater (Great Britain)
63. Scott Davies (Great Britain)
97. Jon Dibben (Great Britain)
DNF Chris Lawless (Great Britain)