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Echoes

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Circuit franco-belge
« on: August 10, 2022, 12:56 »
I'm very glad that the Franco-Belgian Circuit gets its real name back, "Circuit franco-belge" instead of Eurometropole Tour. In 2012 The race has been named Eurometropole Tour because of a partnership with the EU's Eurometropolis Lille–Kortrijk–Tournai (EGTC). In 2016 the race was changed from a stage race to a single-day race. That was the time, Dylan Groenewegen almost ditched Oliver Naesen into the barriers and still was not disqualified.  :o



In 2011, it was also called "Tour de la Wallonie picarde" as this part of the Hainaut province is close to the French border and people there still speak a dialect - "borin" - that is close to the Picardian dialect that used to be spoken in France.

This year, the race is still a single-day race but the partnership with the Eurometropolis seems over. So the rightful name "Circuit franco-belge" gets back.  Besides, the current organisers will get a technical support from Golazo sport (organiser of the Tour of Belgium, BinckBank Tour, several cyclocrosses, the track & field Van Damme Memorial, the 2021 Worlds and known for organising a farewell party for Sven Nys and for Fabian Cancellara) and the return of a stage race format is possible in 2023.

The race was created as an amateur race in 1924. Julien Vervaecke, former Paris-Roubaix winner, won it twice as an amateur in 1925 (ahead of Gaston Rebry) and in 1926.

The Cazeau Pédale Club from the Cazeau village near Tournai took over the organization of the race in 1978. The club had previously organised pro races such as the today disappeared "Circuit des frontières" (1964 - 1995 : won by Jean Stablinsky, Eddy Merckx or Walter Godefroot among others) and afterwards the 1988 Belgian Championship won by Etienne De Wilde. In 1996, the "Circuit franco-belge" opened up to pro riders as a 2.5 category race. In 1999 the race became 2.4 and the Cazeau Pédale Club became the Royal Cazeau Pédale Club.










The toughest climbs are at the start : Bourliquet and Beau site. Unfortunately, they won't be deciders. But as you may know I have a soft spot for the cobbled Côte du Beau Site which used to be one of the main climb of "Dwars door Vlaanderen" up until 1999 when it was still called "Dwars door België" (Across Belgium) and so when it still crossed Wallonia. A climb that can only be compared to Koppenberg in that area. Also the main climb of the Tryptique Monts et Châteaux.







The race can be seen live on RTBF Auvio : https://www.rtbf.be/auvio/direct_cyclisme-les-courses-completes?lid=407692&utm_campaign=RTBF_ACRM_action-de-promo%3F%3F%3F_Titre_%2010-08-2022&utm_medium=email&utm_content=live&utm_source=RTBF_ACRM#/category/9

Stream starts at 3.13pm (had to laugh at the precision of it  :lol)


The Favourites according to Wielerflits.be


**** Biniam Girmay
*** Arnaud De Lie, Alexander Kristoff
** Dries De Bondt, Victor Campenaerts, Bryan Coquard
* Milan Menten, Stan Dewulf, Stan Van Tricht, Giacomo Nizzolo

start-list

Post Merge: August 10, 2022, 13:15
The race can also be seen on ÉÉN (Sporza), on GCN+, Eurosport app and on Eurosport 2 at around 3.30 pm (after the Tour of the Ain).
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  • « Last Edit: August 10, 2022, 13:37 by Echoes »
    "Paris-Roubaix is the biggest cycling race in the world, bigger than the Tour de France, bigger than any other bike race" (Sir Bradley Wiggins)

    Leadbelly

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    Re: Circuit franco-belge
    « Reply #1 on: August 10, 2022, 19:24 »


    What's the deal with the green garden gnome trophy? Some sort of Exterioo symbol?
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  • Echoes

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    Re: Circuit franco-belge
    « Reply #2 on: August 11, 2022, 11:51 »
    No idea to be honest ! Did winners of the previous Exterioo Cup races get the same trophy ? Exterioo is a garden furniture store, so it could be. But La Louvière's colour is green (Football club jersey colour is green), so it could also be.  :D


    It was a nice race really. Campenaerts seemed really strong but always attacked at the wrong time. The way he attacked in the last 400 m false flat, closed the gap with the lead group and then tried to go solo was impressive but too hard to work out. So logical win for Kristoff.

    I didn't know there could be some nice routes around La Louvière. It seemed like a good idea to set the finish there while traditionally the finish is in Tournai. However Tournai is a much nicer town than La Louvière, not even close.  :P
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  • LukasCPH

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    Re: Circuit franco-belge
    « Reply #3 on: August 15, 2022, 10:48 »
    I'm very glad that the Franco-Belgian Circuit gets its real name back, "Circuit franco-belge" instead of Eurometropole Tour.
    By the way, is this name because the race went through both France and Belgium? (which it didn't this year)
    Or is it because it's held in French-speaking Belgium?
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    Echoes

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    Re: Circuit franco-belge
    « Reply #4 on: August 17, 2022, 10:43 »
    Good question. As long as I remember (I discovered that race in 2002), that race has always strictly been comprised within the Belgian borders. In 2002 there even was a stage finish in Lichtervelde, Flanders : http://www.memoire-du-cyclisme.eu/eta_belgique/franco_belge_2002.php

    But as far as I know the stage details of the earliest antebellum editions are not available on the Internet. So my guess is that these might have had stage finishes in both France and Belgium. At least it looked like the field was French and Belgian back then : https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eurom%C3%A9tropole_Tour. The very first winner Julien Perrain was French *fr . I'm sure that most of these French riders who started that race at that time were "Nordists"/ Flemish French from the "Département du Nord". Some of them even have Flemish/Dutch names  *fl : André Vanderdonckt, Jean Dhondt or Raymond Debruyckere. Aubert Winsingue who was 3rd to Julien Vervaecke and Gaston Rebry in 1925 went on to become a very talented cyclocrosser, winning the Critérium international de cyclocross in 1932 (equivalent to the Worlds at that time #rainbow ) and passed away in a crash on a cycling track later that year. He was from Roubaix.

    So that might give a hint.
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  • Echoes

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    Re: Circuit franco-belge
    « Reply #5 on: August 19, 2022, 10:47 »
    What's the deal with the green garden gnome trophy? Some sort of Exterioo symbol?

    Just come to realise that the garden gnome trophy is really Exterioo's as Matteo Trentin got the same one after winning the Samyn Memorial :

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