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Ardennes Classics 2019 (Amstel Gold Race)
« on: April 16, 2019, 08:22 »
Ardennes Classics 2019

After a cople weeks on the cobblestones of Belgium and France, the Ardennes Classics are about to kick off. Three prestigious one-day races held primarily in the Ardennes of Belgium and in the Dutch Limburg region, starting with the Amstel Gold Race on Sunday.

For logistical reasons, in this thread we'll just annex Flemish Brabant and some parts of Wallonia for a week ;)

Wednesday, April 17th      #med 1.HC      *be Brabantse Pijl
Sunday, April 21st      #med WT      *nl Amstel Gold Race
Wednesday, April 24th      #med WT      *be Flèche Wallonne
Sunday, April 28th      #med WT      *be Liège - Bastogne - Liège


Over the past years, mostly puncheurs have secured the victories, with Philippe Gilbert's and Alejandro Valverde's name popping up the most - and, kinda surprisingly, not the one of Peter Sagan.

Brabantse PijlAmstel Gold RaceFlèche WallonneLiège - Bastogne - Liège
2018 *be WELLENS Tim *dk VALGREN Michael *fr ALAPHILIPPE Julian *lu JUNGELS Bob
2017 *it COLBRELLI Sonny *be GILBERT Philippe *es VALVERDE Alejandro *es VALVERDE Alejandro
2016 *cz VAKOC Petr *it GASPAROTTO Enrico *es VALVERDE Alejandro *nl POELS Wout
2015 *be HERMANS Ben *pl KWIATKOWSKI Michal *es VALVERDE Alejandro *es VALVERDE Alejandro
2014 *be GILBERT Philippe *be GILBERT Philippe *es VALVERDE Alejandro *au GERRANS Simon


Liège - Bastogne - Liège has a different finish this year, so that may change the dynamic of the race (hopefully), but we may come back to that later on...
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  • « Last Edit: April 19, 2019, 07:37 by search »
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    Re: Ardennes Classics 2019 (Brabantse Pijl)
    « Reply #1 on: April 16, 2019, 08:23 »
    De Brabantse Pijl - La Flèche Brabançonne

    Wednesday, April 18th

    Not to shock the riders' bodies too much, the hilly classics season starts with some cobbles in Flemish Brabant. The course of the Brabantse Pijl is largely unchanged - and as all races have been great since the finish momev do Overijse in 2010, that's surely not a thing to complain about.


    Last year's race was won by #lotto Tim Wellens in dominant fashion, celebrating the 37th victory for a home rider in 57 editions of the race...


    ...but although Wellens will be eager to defend his title of course, the competition from abroad looks even a bit stronger than usual this year, with #ef EF Education First and #sunweb Team Sunweb returning to the race after a year off, and some strong PCT teams joining the party:
    • #lotto Lotto Soudal
    • #bahrain Bahrain-Merida
    • #deceuninck Deceuninck - Quick-Step
    • #ef EF Education First
    • #mitchelton Mitchelton - Scott
    • #dimension Team Dimension Data
    • #sunweb Team Sunweb
    • #uae UAE Team Emirates
    • #cofidis Cofidis, Solutions Crédits
    • #corendon Corendon - Circus
    • #total Total Direct Energie
    • #academy Israel Cycling Academy
    • #neri Neri Sottoli Selle Italia KTM
    • #riwal Riwal Readynez Cycling Team
    • #roompot Roompot - Charles
    • #vlaanderen Sport Vlaanderen - Baloise
    • #arkea Team Arkea - Samsic
    • #novonordisk Team Novo Nordisk
    • #vital Vital Concept - B&B Hotels
    • #wallonie Wallonie Bruxelles
    • #wanty Wanty - Gobert Cycling Team
    It's not so much about the teams though, but more about the high-profile on in-form riders they are lining up, with the following names striking out the most:
    • #corendon Mathieu van der Poel
    • #deceuninck Julian Alaphilippe
    • #sunweb Michael Matthews
    • #bahrain Sonny Colbrelli
    • #ef Alberto Bettiol
    • #dimension Enrico Gasparotto
    • #total Jonathan Hivert
    while #lotto Bjorg Lambrecht, #bahrain Dylan Teuns, #deceuninck Pieter Serry, #academy Ben Hermans or #wanty Loïc Vliegen look like good candidates to defend the glory of the home nation.

    The race is live on Eurosport and Sporza on from around ~15:00 in the afternoon.
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  • « Last Edit: April 19, 2019, 07:37 by search »

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    Re: Ardennes Classics 2019 (Brabantse Pijl)
    « Reply #2 on: April 17, 2019, 08:08 »
    Star ratings:

    *be Het Nieuwsblad
    :*:*:*:*:* Wellens
    :*:*:*:* van der Poel, Alaphilippe
    :*:*:* Matthews, Teuns, Bettiol
    :*:* Lambrecht, Impey, Kreuziger, Hermans
    :* Vanendert, Colbrelli, van Gestel, Devenyns, Weening

    Wellens himself says that his sensations are good, and he wants to go for the win, but personally he sees van der Poel and Alaphilippe as the favorites.

    Alaphilippe on the other hand regards it as a "good test" after his crash in Pais Vasco and three days off the bike afterwards.
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    Re: Ardennes Classics 2019 (Brabantse Pijl)
    « Reply #3 on: April 19, 2019, 07:30 »
    I only got to watch the final 10k or so, at that point the four pre-race favorites already had broken free (which is very unusually btw, isn't it?!) and #corendon Mathieu van der Poel won the sprint with ease then



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    ...and for more of the same, tune in on Sunday

    Amstel Gold Race

    Sunday, April 21st



    The introduction of the new parcours has resulted in great racing over the past years, and with home-hero van der Poel   having a tendency to attack early on, we can probably expect the race to completely explode with ~50k to go, at the latest.
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    star ratings :)

    *be Gazet van Antwerpen
    :*:*:*:*:* van der Poel
    :*:*:*:* Alaphilippe, Matthews
    :*:*:* Gilbert, van Aert, Kwiatkowski
    :*:* Wellens, Sagan, van Avermaet, Valverde
    :* Cosnefroy, Schachmann, Lutsenko, Fuglsang, Teuns

    *fr l'Équipe
    :*:*:*:*:* van der Poel
    :*:*:*:* Alaphilippe, Matthews, Valverde
    :*:*:* Gilbert, Sagan, Kwiatkowski, Wellens
    :*:* Mohoric, van Avermaet, Kreuziger, Fuglsang, Schachmann
    :* Valgren, Izagirre, Mollema, Woods, Vanendert, Gasparotto, Lutsenko, Colbrelli

    *lu le Quotidien
    :*:*:*:*:* Alaphilippe
    :*:*:*:* van der Poel, Valverde, Schachmann, Bettiol
    :*:*:* Gilbert, Kwiatkowski, Kreuziger, Naesen, Lutsenko, Mohoric
    :*:* Wellens, Matthews, Sagan, van Avermaet, Valgren, van Aert, Poels
    :* Fuglsang, Fraile, Gasparotto, EBH, Mollema, Trentin, Costa, Pogacar, Albasini, Teuns, Colbrelli, Ulissi
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