Justine Baud wins Women's U17 race in millimetre sprint

Justine Baud wins Women's U17 race in millimetre sprint

Road  19/05/2024

France's Justine Baud sprinted to victory in the third edition of the Tour of Flanders Youth Day for Women U17. In a millimetre sprint, she made it just ahead of Eline De Winter. Britain's Eloise Ward came third.

The Women U17 faced no fewer than four climbs and five cobblestone sections spread over the 50.9 km course around Oudenaarde. The first of two rounds immediately brought about the necessary sifting out. Entering the final lap, the depleted peloton consisted of about 30 riders.

After a few skirmishes, the race exploded on the second passage of the Achterberg. Millie Salmon took the lead. Only the Pole Maria Okrucinska was able to hang on to her wheel. Belgian champion Laura Fivé brought the peloton back at the top.

On Berg Ten Stene, the penultimate climb of the day, it was Laura Fivé herself who tested the legs. She thinned the peloton further to just 17 riders. The final passage over the cobblestones of the Holleweg brought misfortune to top favourite Millie Salmon. The peloton did not wait for her. On the steepest part of the Wolvenberg, the final climb of this race, Poland's Okrucinska rode away with Anna Meeusen. The peloton looked to Fivé to close the gap.

Five kilometres from the finish, suddenly it was the Brit Salmon who took the initiative again. After a strong recovery, she led the peloton towards the leaders. Together with Fivé, she brought back the peloton 2 km from the finish. Preparation for the sprint was under way.

Millie Salmon made her move 300 m from the line. However, she was soon swamped by the depleted peloton. France's Justine Baud and Belgium's Eline De Winter crossed the line side by side. With just a few millimetres difference, the finish photo indicated that Justine Baud was the winner. Eloise Ward finished third.

Check the results here.

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