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Tuesday, 11 December, 2018

Philippe Gilbert a value price to conquer Flanders again

Favourite Sagan crashed out of contention last year

Bookmakers believe world champion Peter Sagan (left) is the man to beat
1 of 1

Eurosport 1, 9.15am Sunday

The Tour of Flanders is the second monument of the cycling classics season and as usual the man the peloton all have to beat according to bookmakers is world champion Peter Sagan.

The Slovak has few peers in one-day races but despite a glittering resume he has amazingly won only one monument to date - this race in 2016.

His bid to add to that tally was thwarted by an inspired Vicenzo Nibali at Milan-San Remo although he made amends with victory at Gent-Wevelgem a week later.

So the burning question for punters is whether Sagan represents value at 3-1 in a 266km cobbled race where he knows as well as anyone that anything can happen after crashing out when in contention last year.

Philippe Gilbert broke clear with 55km to go to win last year’s edition of the race and at 7-1 could have been underrated by the layers.

The Belgian has been excellent in support of Niki Terpstra at E3 Harelbeke and Gent-Wevelgem in recent weeks, driving a star-studded Quick-Step Floors side from the front.

As reigning champion he should resume his role as team leader for this race and with a strong team behind him looks a knocking each-way proposition with Betway offering four places.

Fellow Belgian Tiesj Benoot has started to deliver on his potential, winning Strade Bianche earlier this season, and the punchy climbs of the Ronde will suit his aggressive style.

He is worth a small interest at a double-figure price.

P Gilbert
1pt each-way 7-1 Betway
T Benoot
1pt each-way 10-1 Coral

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As reigning champion he should resume his role as team leader for this race
E.W. Terms
Sky bet