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Despite crashing in yesterday’s Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, Boonen had been expected to take part in today’s race, an event that he has previously won on three occasions. However Quick-Step confirmed on Twitter that he would not be taking to the start line, and with no replacement available that they will start with only seven riders.
The Belgian Classics legend, who is riding his last few races with retirement planned after Paris-Roubaix, crashed with around 60 kilometres remaining in Omloop Het Nieuwsblad on Saturday. He continued to ride for a short distance before abandoning, although didn’t appear to be suffering from anything more than road rash.
Boonen will now travel to Italy to take part in Tirreno-Adriatico, which starts on March 8, before returning to Belgium in the second half of the month for his last few races as a professional.