Harry Tanfield finished fourth as BIKE Channel Canyon mixed it with World Tour rivals in a prestigious post-Tour de France crit.
Tim Merlier, of Véranda’s Willems–Crelan, sprinted to glory in De Draai 2017 in Roosendaal on Monday evening.
He outgunned Team Sunweb’s Mike Teunissen and Jesper Asselman, of Team Roompot–Nederlandse Loterij to top the podium.
Tanfield, who finished second in the National Circuit Race Championship and third in the National Circuit Series in July, was next best as he continued his fine form.
The 120km contest, which comprised of 30 4km loops, was raced at a frenetic pace in front of an expectant crowd in the Belgian sunshine.
Rory Townsend jumped clear in an early three-man break, featuring rivals Gijs van Hoecke, from Lotto, and Roompot’s Brian van Goethem
And the trio stayed away until the final five laps, when James Lowsley-Williams picked up the mantle and tried his luck off the front.
Unfortunately, his efforts came to nothing as the thinned-out field powered towards the finish.
That left Tanfield to pick his moment and drive clear with the Merlier, Teunissen, Asselman and Maarten van Trijp, of Metec-TKH.
And in the end, he managed to distance van Trijp but narrowly missed out on a podium as the top trio showed their class.
Townsend rolled over the line in 17th, ahead of the likes of former Orica GreenEdge rider Aidis Kruopis, Sunweb’s Roy Curvers and Lotto duo Lars Boom and Bram Tankink.
Lowsley-Williams was a few seconds further back as he finished alongside Sunwewb’s Zico Waeytens.
Jack Pullar was also in action but was forced to abandon through illness. Click here to check out the full result.