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Orica-GreenEdge rider wins second Monument of his career, defending champion Dan Martin falls on final bend

Simon Gerrans of Orica-GreenEdge has won the second Monument of his career today, beating Movistar's Alejandro Valverde and Michal Kwiatkowski of Omega Pharma-Quick Step to the line to claim victory in the 100th edition of Liège-Bastogne-Liège.

Defending champion Dan Martin of Garmin Sharp had attacked from a select group inside the final kilometre and as he reeled in the two riders ahead, Katusha's Giampaolo Caruso and AG2R's Domenco Pozzovivo, it looked as though the Irish rider might become the first man to win back-to-back editions since Michele Bartoli in 1997 and 1998.

Coming round the final bend, however, and poised to lead the race into the final 300 metres Martin, second to Valverde at the Flèche Wallonne on Wednesday, crashed to the ground, with no other rider involved in the incident.

Instead it was Australian national champion Gerrans who triumphed at the end of the 263km race, adding the oldest Monument, nicknamed La Doyenne and first raced in 1892, to his palmares which already include the 2012 edition of Milan-San Remo.

"It's incredible," said Gerrans afterwards. "I don't have the words to express what I'm feeling. It was really a super hard race all the way at the finish. And I really have to thank my team. With 30kms to go, I actually felt I didn't have good legs but they insisted. I owe them a lot. You never know what happens on such a final.

"I just gave the maximum until the final bend. To win here really is a dream come true. It unfolded perfectly for me. I was well placed and managed to avoid Dan Martin who crashed just in front of me. I then had the legs to finhish well.

"I was confident I could beat guys like Valverde and Gilbert on a sprint like that one but after 250kms, everything can happen.”

Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.

8 comments

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Jones The Steam [36 posts] 2 years ago
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Absolutely gutted for Dan. Thought he had it in the bag!  2

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trevisotart [18 posts] 2 years ago
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Not half as gutted as I was , backed valverde to win had £20 on him ! fools and their money ect ect .

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Alan Tullett [1568 posts] 2 years ago
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I thought Gerrans would win this one as he had a rest. But I also had Dan in my team and his fall probably cost me some sunglasses! Not much though compared to what it cost him but he obviously has good form so I'm sure he'll win some other things this year. But why did he go over? Did his pedal hit the ground or was he just leaning too much!!

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giobox [356 posts] 2 years ago
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Congratulations to Gerrans but my what a dull race. One wonders if the days of the 50km breakaway winning are truly over (of course we can all speculate as to why those days ever came about...). Today we saw a group of incredibly timid racers in a procession, until 1km to go when they remembered that it was a race. A race like today, there is genuinely no point tuning in till the last five minutes.

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ColT [287 posts] 2 years ago
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giobox wrote:

Today we saw a group of incredibly timid racers in a procession, until 1km to go when they remembered that it was a race.

Or, according to the winner...

" said Gerrans afterwards. "It was really a super hard race all the way at the finish." "

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stenmeister [269 posts] 2 years ago
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trevisotart wrote:

Not half as gutted as I was , backed valverde to win had £20 on him ! fools and their money ect ect .

I had an each way bet on Valverde for the Vuelta last year. Made a profit of 18p thanks to his third place.

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JDee [10 posts] 2 years ago
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giobox wrote:

Congratulations to Gerrans but my what a dull race. One wonders if the days of the 50km breakaway winning are truly over (of course we can all speculate as to why those days ever came about...). Today we saw a group of incredibly timid racers in a procession, until 1km to go when they remembered that it was a race. A race like today, there is genuinely no point tuning in till the last five minutes.

I agree that this years race was pretty dull, but it's not like they've all been boring. Last year's L-B-L was pretty great, with Garmin displaying some fantastic tactical riding!

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giobox [356 posts] 2 years ago
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ColT wrote:
giobox wrote:

Today we saw a group of incredibly timid racers in a procession, until 1km to go when they remembered that it was a race.

Or, according to the winner...

" said Gerrans afterwards. "It was really a super hard race all the way at the finish." "

Of course he will say that - did you actually watch it? Not going to go down in history as a classic edition of the race, that's for sure.