Immortal Philip Gilbert (Lotto Soudal)! At 39, 966 days after his last victory on the 17th stage of the Tour of Spain 2019, the most French of Belgians finally returned to success during the 3rd stage of the 4 Days of Dunkirk. A beautiful symbol on a test he likes, on the Franco-Belgian border, and while he is living his last season in the professional peloton. While the favorites were expected on this 3rd stage between Péronne and Mont-Saint-Éloi (170 km), it was finally a grouped peloton which presented itself at the foot of the short final bump. In his characteristic punching style, all in power, the former world champion Philip Gilbert therefore crossed the line first, ahead of the race leader Jason Shard (St Michel-Auber93) and Julian Simon (Total Energy). But a twist after the arrival, Jason Shard is finally penalized 25″ for extended shelter behind his sporting director’s car, as he tried to come back after a crash. It is therefore thein Dutch Arvid De Kleijn (Human Powered Health) which takes the leader’s pink jersey, just ahead Philip Gilbertlisted at the same time.
Video – Philippe Gilbert’s first victory in 2022!
A classic scenario, attacks and falls on the circuit, Philippe Gilbert wins, Jason Tesson penalized
The breakaway of the day is formed from the start of the race. Samuel Leroux (Go Sport-Roubaix Lille Métropole), Kevin Besson (Nice Métropole Côte d’Azur) and Alex Colman (Sport Vlaanderen – Baloise) quickly take a 5-minute lead over a peloton in control, led by the formation of the leader of the event Jason Shard (St Michel-Auber93). Note that the Belgian Alex Colman is the wearer of the weight jersey and is present at the front for the 3rd time in 3 days! The gap with the fugitives is then gradually reduced and is only 2 minutes at 60 kilometers from the finish at Mont-Saint-Eloi.
Entering the final circuit sees the race situation stabilize. The 3 leading men accelerate and maintain a 2’20” lead over a peloton led by the teams St Michel-Auber93, DSM-Team and Alpecin-Fenix, with 3 laps to go and nearly 40 kilometers to go. The race is tense and the pink jersey Jason Shard (St Michel-Auber93) suffered a puncture and went off the road! He manages to return after 10km of hunting, while many attacks shake the peloton, without success. The peloton remains very nervous but no one can tell the difference.
The breakaway is finally swallowed up less than 10 km from the finish, and it is therefore an uphill sprint that is looming. Perfectly launched, all in power, it’s finally Philip Gilbert (Lotto Soudal) who won! He is ahead of the leader of the race on the line Jason Shard (St Michel-Auber93) and Julian Simon (Total Energy). But the leader and 2nd of the day is finally penalized by 25″ for having taken too much advantage of the suction of his car after his fall. He thus loses his jersey in favor ofArvid De Kleijn (Human Powered Health), new leader.
— 4 Days of Dunkirk / Hauts-de-France GP (@4JDDunkerque) May 5, 2022