It's nearly time of one of the most thrilling races of the year, the Ronde van Vlaanderen, AKA the Tour of Flanders! Here's the who's who of riders to watch and the full parcours for both the men's and women's races.
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It’s the first cobbled monument, and my favourite race of the year, the Ronde Van Vlaanderen, known in English as the Tour of Flanders.
We’re back sipping on some tasty and typically strong Belgian beers at the Strawberry Thief in Bristol, but before we get on with talking about the course, the riders and predictions, let us first introduce you to Marty McDonald.
Many of you will have heard and seen Marty on our cyclocross coverage over the winter, as well as a whole host of road races too, but on top of that he has over 15 years experience in talking rubbish about bike races, so he will fit in perfectly around here! Welcome Marty.
Thanks guys. Right, let’s start by looking at the courses. The 103rd edition of the men’s race is ever so slightly longer than it has been for the last couple of years, at 267km’s, but still starts up in Antwerp, as it has done since 2017.
From there, the riders head in a south westerly direction on predominantly flat main roads, which is where we’ll likely see the early breakaway established. Then the first of the day’s difficulties comes 87km’s in - the Lippenhovenstraat, which is quickly followed by the Paddestraat, two flat but tough cobblestones sectors. After them they’ll have 30km’s to organise themselves ahead of the first of the climbs, and in fact the first of three ascents of the Oude Kwaremont.
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📹 https://gcn.eu/5hardestflanders 5 Cobbled Flanders Climbs!
Music - licensed by Epidemic Sound: In And Out Of Love (Tigerblood Jewel Remix) (Instrumental Version) - The Eastern Plain
Photos: © Velo Collection (TDW) / Getty Images & © Bettiniphoto / http://www.bettiniphoto.net/
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