On his last race on Belgian soil Tom Boonen led the train that saw his Quick Step team-mate Marcel Kittel win his fifth victory at the Grand Prix de l'Escaut on Wednesday.
The German sprint ace Kittel edged Italy's Elia Viviani and Frenchman Nacer Bouhanni was third in the race which serves as build-up for the Paris-Roubaix this weekend.
Boonen, 36, the 2005 world champion road racer and winner of the 2007 points jersey at the Tour de France, has a career total of 114 wins but will retire after Sunday's race, which he has also won four times.
Wednesday's race embarked from Boonen's home village of Mol and at the 50km mark the race actually rode right by the house in which he now lives.
The race also featured a mass fall in the final three kilometres with German sprinter Andre Greipel the main victim.