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2023 Danilith Nokere Koerse (1.Pro), Belgium

77th edition: Wednesday, March 15, 2023

Nokere Koerse podium history | 2022 edition | Start list

Deinze - Nokere: 193.6 km, 24.9km of cobbles

Race map

Tim Merlier wins his fifth race this season. Photo: Getty Sport

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Weather at the finish city of Nokere at 1:25 PM, local time: 8C (47F), partly cloudy, with the wind from the south at 5 km/hr (3 mph). There is just a 1% chance of rain.

The course: Nokere Koerse is 193.6 kilometres long in 2023. The start remains on the Markt in Deinze and the finish is of course on top of Nokereberg.

Everything in between has been thoroughly revamped. First there is a 82 km run that takes the riders along Nazareth, Gavere, Zingem, Zwalm, Oudenaarde, Wortegem-Petegem and Anzegem towards Nokere. After 26 kilometres the famous Wolvenberg is the first hill of the day, 24 kilometres later the Tiegemberg follows, with before that the cobblestones of the Varent. This is followed by the Holstraat and the lesser known Petegemberg (500m at 7.6%), with a beautiful view of the Flemish Ardennes at the top.

It goes without saying that these slopes will only serve as a warm-up. After the riders first fire up Nokereberg (350m at 5.7%, maximum 7%), 4 local laps of 28.1km will follow.

The local lap is spiced up with numerous cobbled sections: Herlegemstraat, Lange Aststraat, Kloosterstraat, Lededorp cobbles, Huisepontweg, Wannegem-Dorp and Hoevenstraat, which follow each other very closely. That's where the differences have to be made, otherwise we'll have a power sprint on the Nokereberg.

The race: Here's the report from winner Tim Merlier's Team Soudal Quick-Step.

Tim Merlier added another victory in the Soudal Quick-Step colors, making it two consecutive wins at Nokere Koerse, the race held just a stone’s throw from the place he lives. Coming off the back of a solid outing at Paris-Nice, where he picked up a stage success, the Belgian Champion didn’t miss a beat in the pulsating finale of Wednesday’s race, powering to another clear victory after a mammoth lead-out of Bert Van Lerberghe.

The 76th edition of the Belgian one-day race took in twelve climbs and 25 kilometers of cobbles, the ingredients of an exciting and eventful day in Flanders. Soudal Quick-Step was again at the forefront, controlling the gap of the seven-man escapees and bringing back all the dangerous moves coming from the riders who bet against a bunch sprint on the Nokereberg.

The last of these attacks was nullified just 800 meters from the line by the sensational Van Lerberghe, who then delivered a tremendous pull on the short cobbled hill that left Tim Merlier perfectly placed to hit out with 300 meters to go. It was a truly stunning burst of speed that left his opponents fighting for the minor placings on the podium, as the 30-year-old was just untouchable on his way to the season’s fifth victory.

“This is my home race, so to win it for the second time feels great and makes me very proud. The race, and especially the finale, was hectic, with a lot of attacks, but the team did a great job the entire day. Bert was so strong that he still had enough to launch me after closing out that last dangerous attack. It’s difficult even to describe the amazing work he did in the closing kilometers. All I can say is that I am happy I could finish it off”, said the first reigning Belgian Champion to win Nokere Koerse.

Iljo Keisse was another member of the Soudal Quick-Step team with a big smile on his face Wednesday afternoon, after he guided the team to victory for the first time from the position of main sports director: “It feels good. We had a plan, simple on paper, which was to bring Tim at the finish in an ideal position, because we knew he was the fastest, but it was a bit stressful in the last kilometer. I want to congratulate all the guys for their job, and hopefully, we’ll continue on Friday with another good result.”

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Complete results:

193.6 kilometers raced at an average speed of 44.809 km/hr

1 Tim Merlier Soudal Quick-Step 4hr 19min 14sec
2 Edward Theuns Trek-Segafredo s.t.
3 Milan Menten Lotto Dstny @3sec
4 Timo Kielich Alpecin-Deceuninck s.t.
5 Lewis Askey Groupama-FDJ s.t.
6 Sep Vanmarcke Israel-Premier Tech s.t.
7 Louis Blouwe Bingoal-WB s.t.
8 Laurence Pithie Groupama-FDJ s.t.
9 Christophe Noppe Cofidis s.t.
10 Sjoerd Bax UAE Team Emirates s.t.
11 Florian Vermeersch Lotto Dstny s.t.
12 Madis Mihkels Intermarché-Circus-Wanty s.t.
13 Filippo Colombo Q36.5 Pro Cycling 0:09
14 Antonio Soto Euskaltel-Euskadi s.t.
15 Carlos Canal Euskaltel-Euskadi s.t.
16 Gotzon Martín Euskaltel-Euskadi s.t.
17 Kristoffer Halvorsen Uno-X Pro Cycling 0:13
18 Bram Welten Groupama-FDJ s.t.
19 Fredrik Dversnes Uno-X Pro Cycling s.t.
20 Wesley Kreder Cofidis 0:23
21 Ryan Gibbons UAE Team Emirates s.t.
22 Szymon Sajnok Q36.5 Pro Cycling s.t.
23 Boy Van Poppel Intermarché-Circus-Wanty 0:25
24 Tom Van Asbroeck Israel-Premier Tech s.t.
25 Mathias Vacek Trek-Segafredo s.t.
26 Sam Welsford Team DSM s.t.
27 Timothy Dupont Tarteletto-Isorex s.t.
28 Matyas Kopecky Novo Nordisk s.t.
29 Nickolas Zukowsky Q36.5 Pro Cycling s.t.
30 Jelle Wallays Cofidis s.t.
31 Sander De Pestel Team Flanders-Baloise s.t.
32 Xabier Berasategi Euskaltel-Euskadi s.t.
33 Andrea Peron Novo Nordisk s.t.
34 Clément Davy Groupama-FDJ s.t.
35 Gijs Van Hoecke Human Powered Health s.t.
36 Eddy Finé Cofidis s.t.
37 Ward Vanhoof Team Flanders-Baloise s.t.
38 Lorenz Van De Wynkele Lotto Dstny s.t.
39 Peter Kusztor Novo Nordisk s.t.
40 Tord Gudmestad Uno-X Pro Cycling s.t.
41 Bert Van Lerberghe Soudal Quick-Step 0:33
42 Jacob Scott Bolton Equities-Black Spoke s.t.
43 Julian Mertens Bingoal-WB s.t.
44 Fabio Christen Q36.5 Pro Cycling s.t.
45 Sébastien Grignard Lotto Dstny s.t.
46 Sean Flynn Team DSM s.t.
47 Emils Liepins Trek-Segafredo s.t.
48 Ethan Vernon Soudal Quick-Step s.t.
49 Tim Naberman Team DSM s.t.
50 Stian Fredheim Uno-X Pro Cycling s.t.
51 Vegard Stake Laengen UAE Team Emirates s.t.
52 Guillaume Van Keirsbulck Bingoal-WB s.t.
53 Matthieu Ladagnous Groupama-FDJ s.t.
54 Aaron Gate Bolton Equities-Black Spoke s.t.
55 Thomas Joseph Tarteletto-Isorex s.t.
56 Julius Johansen Intermarché-Circus-Wanty s.t.
57 Andreas Goeman Tarteletto-Isorex 0:39
58 Baptiste Planckaert Intermarché-Circus-Wanty s.t.
59 Stan Van Tricht Soudal Quick-Step s.t.
60 Thibau Nys Trek-Segafredo 0:43
61 Aaron Van Poucke Team Flanders-Baloise s.t.
62 Dries De Pooter Intermarché-Circus-Wanty 0:44
63 Dries De Bondt Alpecin-Deceuninck s.t.
64 Alexander Krieger Alpecin-Deceuninck 0:47
65 Pascal Ackermann UAE Team Emirates 1:03
66 Guy Sagiv Israel-Premier Tech s.t.
67 Tom Devriendt Q36.5 Pro Cycling 1:09
68 Louis Bendixen Uno-X Pro Cycling s.t.
69 Charles-Etienne Chrétien Human Powered Health 1:26
70 Nicolò Parisini Q36.5 Pro Cycling 1:34
71 Kamil Malecki Q36.5 Pro Cycling s.t.
72 Sam Watson Groupama-FDJ s.t.
73 Kobe Vanoverschelde Tarteletto-Isorex 2:13
74 August Jensen Human Powered Health s.t.
75 Lindsay De Vylder Team Flanders-Baloise 2:16
76 Vito Braet Team Flanders-Baloise s.t.
77 Juan Jose Lobato Euskaltel-Euskadi s.t.
78 Otto Vergaerde Trek-Segafredo 2:18
79 Enzo Paleni Groupama-FDJ s.t.
80 Nicolas Dalla Valle Team Corratec s.t.
81 Cériel Desal Bingoal-WB s.t.
82 Martin Urianstad Bugge Uno-X Pro Cycling s.t.
83 Luca Van Boven Bingoal-WB 2:27
84 Roel Van Sintmaartensdijk Intermarché-Circus-Wanty s.t.
85 Gerben Thijssen Intermarché-Circus-Wanty s.t.
86 Taj Jones Israel-Premier Tech 4:10
87 Piet Allegaert Cofidis 4:15
88 Victor Campenaerts Lotto Dstny 4:20
89 Xandro Meurisse Alpecin-Deceuninck s.t.
90 Tobias Bayer Alpecin-Deceuninck s.t.
91 Michael Vink UAE Team Emirates s.t.
92 Josef Cerný Soudal Quick-Step s.t.
93 Martin Svrcek Soudal Quick-Step s.t.
94 Adam De Vos Human Powered Health s.t.
95 Riley Pickrell Israel-Premier Tech s.t.
96 Marc Brustenga Trek-Segafredo s.t.
97 Giulio Masotto Team Corratec s.t.
98 Jonas Geens Tarteletto-Isorex s.t.
99 Jasper De Buyst Lotto Dstny 4:30
100 Dorian De Maeght Bingoal-WB 4:41
101 Kaden Groves Alpecin-Deceuninck s.t.
102 André Carvalho Cofidis s.t.
103 Enekoitz Azparren Euskaltel-Euskadi 4:44
104 Declan Irvine Novo Nordisk 5:04
105 Leon Heinschke Team DSM 5:05
106 Ludovic Robeet Bingoal-WB 6:28
107 Gage Hecht Human Powered Health 6:33
108 Ryan Christensen Bolton Equities-Black Spoke 8:16
109 Rory Townsend Bolton Equities-Black Spoke s.t.
110 Ivo Oliveira UAE Team Emirates 8:21
111 Arjen Livyns Lotto Dstny 8:55
112 Samuele Zambelli Team Corratec s.t.
113 Jannik Steimle Soudal Quick-Step s.t.
114 Alex Colman Team Flanders-Baloise s.t.
115 Lorenzo Quartucci Team Corratec s.t.
116 Axel Källberg Team DSM s.t.
117 Xabier Isasa Euskaltel-Euskadi s.t.
118 Tobias Lund Andresen Team DSM s.t.
119 Vincent Van Hemelen Team Flanders-Baloise 10:12
120 Felix Gros UAE Team Emirates 10:13
121 Maxime De Poorter Tarteletto-Isorex s.t.
122 Thibau Verhofstadt Tarteletto-Isorex s.t.
123 Luke Mudgway Bolton Equities-Black Spoke 14:00


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Race map:

2023 Nokere Koerse map



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Start list with back numbers, March 14, 2023:

1 Tim Merlier
2 Josef Cerný
3 Jannik Steimle
4 Martin Svrcek
5 Bert Van Lerberghe
6 Stan Van Tricht
7 Ethan Vernon
11 Pascal Ackermann
12 Ivo Oliveira
13 Rui Oliveira
14 Sjoerd Bax
15 Felix Gros
16 Vegard Stake Laengen
17 Michael Vink
21 Edward Theuns
22 Marc Brustenga
23 Emils Liepins
24 Thibau Nys
25 Mathias Vacek
26 Otto Vergaerde
31 Dries De Bondt
32 Ayco Bastiaens
33 Tobias Bayer
34 Timo Kielich
35 Alexander Krieger
36 Xandro Meurisse
37 Kaden Groves
41 Lewis Askey
42 Clément Davy
43 Enzo Paleni
44 Matthieu Ladagnous
45 Laurence Pithie
46 Sam Watson
47 Bram Welten
51 Sam Welsford
52 Tobias Lund Andresen
53 Sean Flynn
54 Leon Heinschke
55 Alberto Dainese
56 Tim Naberman
57 Axel Källberg
61 Gerben Thijssen
62 Julius Johansen
63 Madis Mihkels
64 Baptiste Planckaert
65 Dries De Pooter
66 Boy Van Poppel
67 Roel Van Sintmaartensdijk
71 Max Walscheid
72 Piet Allegaert
73 André Carvalho
74 Christophe Noppe
75 Eddy Finé
76 Wesley Kreder
77 Jelle Wallays
81 Sep Vanmarcke
82 Tom Van Asbroeck
84 Taj Jones
85 Riley Pickrell
86 Guy Sagiv
87 Roi Weinberg
91 Victor Campenaerts
92 Jasper De Buyst
93 Sébastien Grignard
94 Arjen Livyns
95 Milan Menten
96 Lorenz Van De Wynkele
97 Florian Vermeersch
101 Erlend Blikra
102 Fredrik Dversnes
103 Stian Fredheim
104 Tord Gudmestad
105 Kristoffer Halvorsen
106 Louis Bendixen
107 Martin Urianstad
111 Vito Braet
112 Alex Colman
113 Sander De Pestel
114 Lindsay De Vylder
115 Vincent Van Hemelen
116 Aaron Van Poucke
117 Ward Vanhoof
121 Guillaume Van Keirsbulck
122 Cériel Desal
123 Louis Blouwe
124 Julian Mertens
125 Ludovic Robeet
126 Luca Van Boven
127 Dorian De Maeght
131 Enekoitz Azparren
132 Carlos Canal
133 Xabier Berasategi
134 Xabier Isasa
135 Juan Jose Lobato
136 Gotzon Martín
137 Antonio Soto
141 Sasha Weemaes
142 Stephen Bassett
143 Adam De Vos
144 Matthew Gibson
145 Gage Hecht
146 August Jensen
147 Gijs Van Hoecke
151 Matthew Bostock
152 Ryan Christensen
153 James Fouche
154 Aaron Gate
155 Luke Mudgway
156 Jacob Scott
157 Rory Townsend
161 Filippo Colombo
162 Kamil Malecki
163 Fabio Christen
164 Tom Devriendt
165 Nicolò Parisini
166 Szymon Sajnok
167 Nickolas Zukowsky
172 Joonas Henttala
173 Matyas Kopecky
174 Peter Kusztor
175 Andrea Peron
176 Charles Planet
177 Umberto Poli
181 Charlie Quarterman
182 Antonio Barac
183 Nicolas Dalla Valle
184 Lorenzo Quartucci
185 Etienne Van Empel
186 Samuele Zambelli
187 Giulio Masotto
191 Timothy Dupont
192 Maxime De Poorter
193 Jonas Geens
194 Bo Godart
195 Andreas Goeman
196 Thomas Joseph
197 Thibau Verhofstadt