All photos courtesy of KRIS VAN EXEL, info translated from “Het Nieuwsblad”
Het Nieuwsblad organized a modest gala to deliver the trophies to the laureates. The two trophies were awarded corona proof on Friday evening at the Tour of Flanders Center in Oudenaarde. Prime Minister Alexander De Croo was the handler and congratulated the Flandrien and Flandrienne. The bronze trophies are works of art by Fernand Vanderplancke, who also created the trophies in the Tour of Flanders. Van Aert succeeds himself as Flandrien, last year, he defeated Evenepoel after an exciting and unprecedented round of voting by exactly one point. This year the margin was much larger. A professional jury of forty people first took care of five nominations in the peloton. The annual classic jury lunch was replaced by digital voting. Remco Evenepoel, Yves Lampaert, Jasper Philipsen, Wout van Aert and Tim Wellens were all designated as candidate Flandrien.138 riders voted. The names of the five nominees then went to all Belgian professional riders. They could vote for ten days. Ultimately, 138 of the 151 professional riders took part in the vote. Only 13 did not vote. For Van Aert, this individual prize is the crowning glory after a formidable season with victories in Milan-San Remo, Strade Bianche, and the Tour, among others. In addition, he became vice world champion in the time trials and on the road.1. Wout Van Aert: 637 pts, 2. Remco Evenepoel: 475 pts, 3.Yves Lampaert: 338 pts, 4.Tim Wellens: 322 pts, 5.Jasper Philipsen: 298 pts
Among the ladies, the Flandrienne 2020 went to Lotte Kopecky. The jury rewarded Kopecky’s regularity with the trophy, but also the fact that she became Belgian champion twice. Kopecky did that on the road as in the time trial. The Belgian champion also won a stage in the Giro Rosa. Kopecky – who wins the Flandrienne for the first time – precedes the three-time winner Jolien D’Hoore in the final result. 1. Lotte Kopecky: 187 pts, 2. Jolien D’hoore: 155 pts, 3. Shari Bossuyt: 84 pts, 4. Sanne Cant: 48 pts, 5. Jesse Vandenbulcke: 26 pts
Sarah De Bie, the wife of Wout van Aert, shined on Friday evening with her round belly in her evening dress. She politely declined a corona-proof bottle of champagne from a clumsy employee…lol… In the week after New Year, she and her Flandrien are expecting their first child.