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The Tour of Flanders & Dwars Door Vlaanderen | The Cycling Race News Show

The Tour of Flanders & Dwars Door Vlaanderen | The Cycling Race News Show

We’re back with the GCN Racing News Show. It’s been another big week in the World
of professional racing. The second of the season’s five monuments
took place yesterday in the form of the Tour of Flanders, we shall be focussing on that,
but we’ll also be dipping into the GP Miguel Indurain, Dwars Door Vlaanderen, and the Volta
Limburg Classic. For me it’s the most exciting period of racing
for the year. The cobbled classics week, which we are currently
celebrating with a whole host of related content here on GCN, kicked off on Sunday with the
Ronde, and the Belgians go mad for it for a whole week leading up to
the race. The Two Hundred and sixty four kilometres,
described by debutant Vincenzo Nibali, as six hours of stress and concentration, took
the men’s race from the start in Antwerp to the finish in Oudenaarde, over the famous
flemish bergs and kasseien. It took a full seventy kilometers of constant
attacking for the early eleven rider breakaway to finally establish itself. They gained a maximum advantage of only around
five minutes, leaving them little hope of making it deep into the race. For many of the favourites, the biggest obstacle
appeared to be trying to stay upright. Michael Valgren crashed hard, so did Sep Vanmarcke
and Oliver Naesen, twice each. The twitchiness of the peloton combined with
wet, slippery roads made for a particularly nervous race. The first big move came with just over fifty
kilometres remaining. Dutch duo of Dylan Van Baarle and Sebastian
Langeveld, along with Danish Duo Mads Pedersen and Magnus Cort Nielson, launched an attack
from what remained of the bunch, and soon caught what remained of the breakaway. They soon built up a fourty second advantage,
and with a distinct lack of domestiques left to work behind, it was a dangerous move. The crunch point of the race, though, came
just over the top of the Kruisbergen out of Ronse with twenty seven kilometres to go An
initial acceleration by Zdenek Stybar was countered by Milan Sanremo winner Vincenzo
Nibali, and for a fleeting moment you just wondered whether the shark would pull off
the impossible for a second time. However, the dream was shattered as he was
caught and dropped by Niki Terpstra. The momentary indecisiveness of the remaining
favourites, coupled with the fact that Quickstep teammates Gilbert and Stybar were constantly
there to chase down attacks and dent morale, meant that Terpstra soon gained a significant
advantage. And with the form he is on, that’s not something
you can afford to give him. He caught and dropped Langeveld, Van Baarle
and Pedersen on the steepest section of the Kwaremont, and with a forty second advantage
over the top of the final climb of the Paterberg, the race was his to lose. And that is certainly not something he was
going to let happen – despite Sagan’s best efforts, initially on his own over the Paterberg
and then eventually with the rest of the favourites, they weren’t able to make a dent into the
advantage of Terpstra, who took his maiden win at the race, to add to his Paris Roubaix
title from four years ago. Terpstra, incidentally, is the first Dutch
winner since Adrie Van Der Poel, father of Mathieu, some thirty two years ago. And if you’re wondering how Mathieu’s
arch nemesis Wout Van Aert got on, the answer is well, very well. In his first ever monument he came 9th, and
just looked pretty sublime throughout, particularly on the climbs. That said, he was beaten by an even younger
rider, Mads Pedersen, who will shall be talking about a little later. The women’s event both started and finished
in the town of Oudenaarde. For them, it was one hundred and fifty three
kilometres on the cards. Not a whole lot happened for the first fifty
kilometres or so, apart from a solo effort by Natalie Van Gogh, and in fact the first
big splits were caused by a huge pile-up which came on the run in to the Muur Van Geraardsbergen. Just like the men’s race, though, the decisive
action came on the ascent of the Kruisbergen, or at least just over it, with twenty seven
kilometres to go. Some strong riding on the front by Amy Pieters
had strung the group out, and Anna Van Der Breggen was there to take full advantage. Van Der Breggen just looks on another level
this year, even by her own high standards, and her advantage quickly grew. In fact, already by the Kwarmont she had eeked
out a one minute lead, and at that point the race was done and dusted. Behind, Kasia Niewiadoma was particularly
aggressive over the final climbs, but two chasing groups merged inside the final kilometre,
and it was Amy Pieters who took the sprint ahead of Annemiek Van Vleuten, making it an
all Dutch podium and the perfect weekend for the Dutch all round. The women’s worldtour will return in two
weeks time with the Amstel Gold Race. And, since we’re talking about the WorldTour,
we should probably give you an update on the rankings. Van Der Breggen has propelled herself up to
second, just behind her Boels Dolmans teammate Amy Pieters, whilst Peter Sagan’s 6th position
was enough to give him the lead in the men’s, ahead of Alejandro Valverde and Tiesj Benoot. In terms of our rider of the week, we’ve
got plenty of choice. Annamiek Van Vleuten who, according to her
twitter feed, finished third with a dislocated shoulder, Oliver Naesen who finished 11th
despite two bad crashes, Vanmarcke who finished 13th after a similar amount of bad luck, our
two solo winners, or Michael Valgren for his impressive 4th place after another high speed
crash. However, our rider of the week is Mads the
beast Pedersen. After being away in a trio for the last 50km’s
of the race, ALMOST hanging on to Terpstra when he thundered past on the Kemmelberg,
and then holding a group of the strongest classics riders in the world at bay, he took
2nd place, in his debut at the race no less. And he’s just 21! According to Cafe Roubaix, he is the youngest
rider in the last four decades to finish on the podium of the Tour of Flanders, whilst
Veloropa shows us how that performance compares to some previous greats, such as Freddy Maertens
who also finished 2nd on his debut, 45 years ago, and Rik Van Steenbergen who won at his
first try in 1944. That is a mightily impressive ride, and more
than deserving in my book of our rider of the week award. OK, moving on, or in some ways moving backwards,
there was another semi classic, or warm up race, in the form of Dwars Door Vlaanderen,
last Wednesday. Some atrocious weather conditions greeted
the riders on the day, the action may have been hot but the riders were anything but. There was an impressive show of strength and
impressive tactical riding by Yves Lampaert in the men’s race He outwitted a five man
group in the closing kilometres to make it back to back wins for him at the race. You have to take your tip off to QuickStep,
though. This year at the big Belgian one day races
they have won all but one, and they came close there too with Elia Viviani a bitterly disappointed
2nd at Gent Wevelgem. One of the big stories of the race was just
how competent Alejandro Valverde was, making all the major splits and at one point looking
good for the win. Both he and teammate Quintana had taken part
in order to get experience on the cobbles prior to this year’s Tour de France. Should a featherweight climber like Valverde
be able to compete with the big guns over the cobbles? No not really. Would we have been surprised if he’d won? No not really. We had another all Dutch podium in the women’s
event. Ellen Van Dijk was one of the few to be relishing
the conditions, and when she attacked with 7km’s to go, she never looked book, and
nobody ever saw her again. The ever consistent Amy Pieters was 2nd, with
Floortje Mackaij third.` Meanwhile, down in Spain, Alejandro Valverde
has been up to his usual tricks, i.e. winning. In some ways it was a shame to see him skip
the Tour of Flanders, he had been considering that, but nevertheless he did race somewhere
and took his 9th win of the year. The Spaniard made his move on the Alto de
Muru, the final climb of the race. Carlos Verona was initially with him, and
although eventually dropped, the Mitchelton Scott rider did hold on for second place. And finally for this week it’s the Volta
Limburg Classic up in the Netherlands, where, surprisingly, there wasn’t a Dutch winner. Jan Tratnik, winner of the TT at the Coppi
e Bartali race just a week ago, narrowly missing a fall, but his breakaway companion Oscar
Riesebeek wasn’t so lucky. Check out Team Roompot’s twitter account
for the photo – thankfully he was alright. Tratnik was able to go on to take his second
win in the space of a week. Well, that’s it for this week, next week
we’ll be reporting on the Tour of Basque Country – one of hardest week long races on
the calendar, so spare a thought for the likes of Michal Kwiatkowski and Vincenzo Nibali
who will start that race the day after finishing the Tour of Flanders – that is hardcore. We will also, of course, be looking mainly
at Paris Roubaix, the hell of the north, so make sure you join us next week for that. In the meantime there will be loads more cobbled
content coming up on GCN leading up to that race, including a recon of the final 100km’s
and a tyre pressure test over the Carrefour de l’Arbre – I wouldn’t recommend 100
psi, it’s…………….well it’s painful. Before all of that, though, make sure you
let us know if these are the hardest five climbs in Flanders.

56 comments on “The Tour of Flanders & Dwars Door Vlaanderen | The Cycling Race News Show

  1. Which is better – the Tour Of Flanders or Paris-Roubaix? Leave us your predictions for the Hell of the North below 👇

  2. He should have been covered by everyone in that group when he went after Nibali. Everyone knew he was in good form coming to TOF. I think everyone was too worried about what Sagan will do and if Sagan wouldnt have pushed after the last cobbles, everyone would still be sleeping.
    Good job Terpstra!

  3. Niki is the pride of the dutch in the spring classics! Totally deserved win in the most prestigious monument of the year

  4. It has been a good couple of weeks to be a Danish cycling fan 🇩🇰 Hopefully they’ll do well in Paris – Roubaix as well.

  5. Tour de Flanders was a very good race . If the Paris Roubaix is as good or better I’ll be a very happy punter. Can Sagan do better? I hope so.

  6. Terpstra won because, just like in Milan – San Remo everybody was looking at Sagan and were not working together on closing the gap. It appeared as if they weren't even trying.
    Don't get me wrong, Terpstra did a good job and he really earned it. But I don't think he was the best rider that day.

    The other teams need learn to work together with Sagan. If they don't, they will continue to lose to someone who ignores Sagan and just goes for it himself.

  7. Thanks Dan. I was hoping Sagan will win for him to earn a classic title. But I believe that now a days more competitive cyclist are emerging due to its dedication and science behind trainings.

  8. Don't know if I like the fact that you are.putting photo's of big winners up. As someone who works, has three kids and tries to Zwift or ride most nights I am often playing catch up… Spoilers guys!!!!

  9. ffs! Don't write the name of the winner as the description of a video you publish just hours after the event!

  10. Hey GCN we'd love to have a bit of fun content on 'In Their Prime' (natural prime that is) Rules: In the Final Break, With No Teammates, Who Wins and How Do The Win?" Final Break: Sagan, Cancellara, Boonen, Museeuw, Ballerini, Flecha, PVP, Devolder, and Tafi…PS keeping it relatively modern era bc well Merckx…Great race in Flanders! So nice to see GC contenders (Nibali) return to the old times and compete on the cobbles (Lemond, Hinault, etc)….Thx for the videos please keep them coming

  11. Was going to watch the recorded race tonight – thanks for letting me know who won in the title and the photo aswell of the winner!! Can you look at this for the future so you don’t spoil it for everyone that can’t watch it live?

  12. A pronunciation tip since you're gonna be saying his name often, for the next 10-12 years: Mads Pedersen = [Mass Pethersin] = 'Mads' should rhyme with 'gas' and 'Pedersen' should rhyme with 'feather sin'.

  13. Every single race report from the Tour of Flanders is wrong – Mads Pedersen attacked w Jos Van Emden 80 km out then Pedersen decided to stay w Van Emden and the morning break instead of following Garcia Cortina and Devriendt.. The group didn't work well together so Pedersen attacked and bridged the gap SOLO to the two cathing them w 49km to go. Then Van Baarle and Langeveld attacked w 50 km to go and only Pedersen from the break could follow.. But hey 30km more adds nothing the accomplishment.

  14. Are we really that surprised that Valverde and Nibali managed to perform well in the cobbled races this week? I accept that they're perhaps not as well suited to the cobbles as some of the bigger, stronger riders, but both Nibali and Valverde are accomplished grand tour riders who have to take in all sorts of different terrain over the three weeks of a grand tour and try to be the best at all of them. Ultimately, Nibali and Valverde are VERY good and highly competitive bike riders so whatever the race throws at them they are more than capable of mixing it with the best

  15. Can you do a segment of this show where you analyse tactics e.g where people attacked, from where and how they positioned themselves in the bunch. Thanks

  16. Dan: “ From an undisclosed concrete jail cell…Welcome to the GCN Racing news show.”

    Maybe soon they will end Dan’s sentence in cement prison for time served. #freedanlloyd

  17. Sorry Dan but would rather look at the pictures – all we get in the States. If nothing else, use a split screen or place yourself off to the lower left or right of a green screen.

  18. Mads was on fire. Not sure if it was intentional but he was in the background of all the RVV shots of Lampaert and Valverde

  19. Great move by Terpstra to win in Flanders. Now before Paris-Roubaix Sagan and his coach will go to all the other teams and explain to their riders that they have to work with Peter to make sure he wins. After all, he's Peter Sagan and it really isn't fair that all the other riders in the race aren't helping him win!

  20. Please, please will you stop putting a picture of the winner on your thumb nail advert, I frequently record and watch a day or two later. I will have to unsubscribe to gcn if this problem of spoilers continues.

  21. The mention of Van Steenbergen's win in 1944 struck me as odd because Belgium didn't seem like a great place to hold a bike race at that time. I had no idea the Ronde continued through the war. Does anyone have a decent source of information on the races held during those years?

  22. Just like to say this guy is getting the best interviews. Nothing in it for me just spreading the news. Cycling Journos on the Road.

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