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2017 Flèche Wallone - April 19th - 200.5km



Time for Explosive Climber Worlds. You know the drill, it's all about the Mur de Huy.

Teams
Lotto Soudal (Wellens, Vanendert)
AG2R La Mondiale (Vuillermoz, Bardet, LaTour)
Trek - Segafredo (Felline, Pantano)
Team LottoNL-Jumbo (Gesink)
BMC Racing Team (Sanchez, Hermans)
Astana Pro Team (Fuglsang, Valgren)
Quick-Step Floors (Martin)
Bahrain Merida Pro Cycling Team (Izagirre, Gasparotto)
Movistar Team (Valverde, Moreno, Soler)
Team Katusha - Alpecin
Team Sunweb (Barguil, Kelderman)
Team Sky (Kwiatkowski, Henao)
UAE Team Emirates (Costa, Ulissi, Meintjes)
Cannondale-Drapac Pro Cycling Team (Uran, Woods)
Bora - Hansgrohe (Majka, McCarthy)
FDJ (Vichot, Gaudu)
ORICA-Scott (Albasini, A Yates)
Dimension Data (Haas, Kudus)
WB Veranclassic Aqua Protect
Cofidis, Solutions Crédits
Direct Energie (Calmejane)
Fortuneo - Vital Concept
Sport Vlaanderen - Baloise
Wanty - Groupe Gobert
Aqua Blue Sport

>>Link to Startlist<<








Previous winners
2016 | VALVERDE Alejandro
2015 | VALVERDE Alejandro
2014 | VALVERDE Alejandro
2013 | MORENO Daniel
2012 | RODRÍGUEZ Joaquim
2011 | GILBERT Philippe
2010 | EVANS Cadel
2009 | REBELLIN Davide
2008 | KIRCHEN Kim
2007 | REBELLIN Davide
2006 | VALVERDE Alejandro

2016 Results
1.VALVERDE Alejandro
2.ALAPHILIPPE Julian
3.MARTIN Daniel
4.POELS Wout
5.GASPAROTTO Enrico
6.SÁNCHEZ Samuel
7.ALBASINI Michael
8.ULISSI Diego
9.BARGUIL Warren
10.COSTA Rui

My take:
****Valverde, Martin, Henao
*** Kwia, Uran, Gilbert
**Woods, Albasini, Gasparotto, Yates, Sanchez
*Bardet, Barguil, Costa, Ulissi
 
Jul 21, 2016
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What do you reckon the chances are of getting an exciting race this year?

I find them all being together at the bottom of the Mur with a sprint at the top quite boring.
 
Mar 13, 2015
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I'm expecting Kwiat/Gilbert move again, before Mur de Huy. Valverde needs to mark this time. On the Mur itself, it's Bala vs Dan Martin vs Henao
 
Re:

Mr.White said:
I'm expecting Kwiat/Gilbert move again, before Mur de Huy. Valverde needs to mark this time. On the Mur itself, it's Bala vs Dan Martin vs Henao

What would be the ideal place to launch from? number of riders in the move?
A bunch of the prominent riders capable on hilly terrain must have realsied by now that this is Bala's Mur And that there has to be a re-thinking of how this race is won. And with recent events in mind.. Well..

We might as well win

From far out..!
 
Wellens attacks on the Cherave just to get caught on the first meters of the Mur where nobody wants to go early so Valverde smokes everyone else in an uphill sprint. I just didn't only sum up the last two editions of this race I'm also pretty sure thats what will happen this year.
 
Re:

Buffalo Soldier said:
But Valverde was really bad Yesterday? (I mean, for being Valverde he was)
There are two possible explanations for Valverde's poor result in AGR:
* He sent Rojas to follow Gilbert's attack thinking they would chase later but then collaboration to keep the pace was better in the front group than in the chasers group, so Valverde made a tactical error.
* He was really bad and Rojas was Movistar's true leader :p
 
Concerning a race won with a winning move from far out, I hink its alot harder to make a move stick lets say on the Mur 30km from the finish. There has only been 175 km of racing with less hills, less sharp turns and road furniture. More domestiques will be fresher and ready to chase down a move at that point in the race. There will be more men at disposal for lets say Valverde at that point.
 
Re:

ice&fire said:
Does anyone know how the racing was before it became just an uphill sprint? There have been good races that finished up the Mur, that I know, but it was way before my time. Was the earlier part of the race harder?

I remember editions from the 2000s with a course, that wasn't longer, maybe with less climbing in the finale (Bohissau - Ahin - Huy as only climbs on the last 30k), but with winning moves on the last 30 kilometers by the pre-race favourites. Like groups forming in a descent or strong riders bridging to groups like Verbrugghe in 2001. These days, there weren't as many chasers left as today and the leaders didn't wait until Huy. They went out earlier and battled it out on these last kilometers. Bartoli winning in 1999 in snow rain and bad weather. Winning move came 70 kilometers from the finish. Of course things are different in these conditions. Same kind of attack in 1996 with Lance taking the win and no need to bring on 1994. ;) What I am trying to say is, that the course was easier those years. 1989 saw the last 250+ kilometer edition. Which is of course an option, if they would make me design the course. ;)

Those guys had a bigger tank (and I won't write more about it...), but still today every team in this race except Movistar or maybe Sky should make their leaders do something before Huy. And I don't mean sending out some guys to see what happens. Amstel clearly showed, that Valverde is in big trouble when other strong riders go on the attack earlier. They can't reach Huy with Bala together.
 
Re: Re:

Max Rockatansky said:
ice&fire said:
Does anyone know how the racing was before it became just an uphill sprint? There have been good races that finished up the Mur, that I know, but it was way before my time. Was the earlier part of the race harder?

I remember editions from the 2000s with a course, that wasn't longer, maybe with less climbing in the finale (Bohissau - Ahin - Huy as only climbs on the last 30k), but with winning moves on the last 30 kilometers by the pre-race favourites. Like groups forming in a descent or strong riders bridging to groups like Verbrugghe in 2001. These days, there weren't as many chasers left as today and the leaders didn't wait until Huy. They went out earlier and battled it out on these last kilometers. Bartoli winning in 1999 in snow rain and bad weather. Winning move came 70 kilometers from the finish. Of course things are different in these conditions. Same kind of attack in 1996 with Lance taking the win and no need to bring on 1994. ;) What I am trying to say is, that the course was easier those years. 1989 saw the last 250+ kilometer edition. Which is of course an option, if they would make me design the course. ;)

Those guys had a bigger tank (and I won't write more about it...), but still today every team in this race except Movistar or maybe Sky should make their leaders do something before Huy. And I don't mean sending out some guys to see what happens. Amstel clearly showed, that Valverde is in big trouble when other strong riders go on the attack earlier. They can't reach Huy with Bala together.
Ok, thanks

Last time I can even remember the penultimate Mur de Huy being raced hard was 2010.
 
Aug 16, 2013
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I think Henao can win this. He looked super strong in the Amstel.

I don't know really about Valverde. He always performs a little under par in the Amstel, even in the years he dominated FW and LBL. So normally he should be fine wednesday.

But i think he could be in trouble if some big guys attack from afar, tactic wise. It's really a shame Gilbert won't be there, but i reckon an atttack of a group containing Kwiat, Izagirre, Bardet, Majka, Yates and Costa could be really dangerous. Let's hope Movistar will not be that strong, and other teams are not willing to ride themselves to a certain defeat.

But most interesting FW in years for sure! :)