2021 World Championships in Flanders: Road Races

Welcome to the 100th anniversary of the Road Cycling World Championships!
Time: September 2021
Place: Flanders, Belgium (Antwerp-Leuven)

Current Champions:


This is the joint race thread for the road races:

Men's Junior RR, Friday 24 (121,4 km) Leuven-Leuven
Men's Under 23 RR, Friday 24 (160,9 km) Antwerp-Leuven
Women's Junior RR, Saturday 25 (75 km) Leuven-Leuven
Women's Elite RR, Saturday 25 (157,7 km) Antwerp-Leuven
Men's Elite RR, Sunday 26, (268,3 km) Antwerp-Leuven

Profile and course for the men's elite:



Profil and course for the grown-up women:




The route is a bit complicated, I quote the cyclingnews article:

"The main circuit is a 15km loop around Leuven characterised by punchy, twisting city-centre streets. There are four short categorised climbs and at least 20 tight corners to be negotiated. The other circuit is dubbed the ‘Flandrien loop’, nearly 50km in length and taking the riders out towards the bigger climbs. It tackles six in total, starting with the Smeysberg, then hitting the Moskestraat and the S-bend in Overijse. After the Bekestraat, it’s the Veeweide and the Smeysberg again before a flatter path back towards the Leuven circuit.

While the junior categories will eschew the Flandrien loop and stick to the Leuven circuit, the elite men and women, plus the U23 men, will all do various combinations of both.

The elite men’s road race features a lap of the Leuven loop, then a lap of the Flandrien loop, then four laps of the Leuven loop, another Flandrien loop and, finally, another two-and-a-half laps of the Leuven loop.

The elite women’s road race features just one lap of the Flandrien circuit. They’ll similarly do a lap of the smaller circuit on entry to Leuven before heading out of town, but when they return, there will be just two-and-a-half laps of the Leuven circuit before the final throws for the line."


You're good?

Well, what I understood is that they are riding around Flanders, they all will finish somewhere in Leuven, and these are the climbs in close up:



I'm quoting a bit from the amateur's race advertising:

"...a wall appears in front of you: the Smeysberg. The climb promises to be one of the deciding factors of the 2021 UCI Road World Championships. With an average gradient of 8.84% at 700 metres and a maximum of up to 16% you will soon feel why.

For the participants in the longest distance, the Moskesstraat will follow three kilometres later. The completely renewed climb has an average gradient of 8% at 550 metres, which makes it a very difficult climb. Try to have some energy left at the end of the Moskesstraat, because the last stretch can reach a maximum of no less than 18%.

... Bekestraat (439 m - 7.5% average - 15% max.). For the time being, this is a relatively unknown climb for the public, but that may soon be about to change. Bekestraat is a real calf muscle killer, tailored to the explosive cobblestone eaters with another power explosion in the legs."


It is said that the race resembles more the Brabantse Pijl than the Tour of Flanders... what'd ye think?

Anyway, no question that the "real Flandriens" are among the favourites for this race. The weather, last time I checked, looks to be mild, though, with around 20° and probably no or only light rain.
 
We're at the point of making profiles of 15m altitude difference "climbs"
Why not? :p They become pretty nasty and tiring when ridden at a high speed over and over again. No rhythm, intervals way above the threshold. Last weekend I did 200 km on a hilly terrain and negotiated probably over hundred of such steep "monsters". Legs feel it. I would prefer a few steady longer climbs a few hunder meters of rise each.
 
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By the way, I thought there was a photo of van der Breggen and Alaphilippe both in rainbow jerseys... but I couldn't find it so I had to sneak the FW in. If you have the better version you can post the link and I'll replace the above one...
 
Reactions: Sandisfan
Why not? :p They become pretty nasty and tiring when ridden at a high speed over and over again. No rhythm, intervals way above the threshold. Last weekend I did 200 km on a hilly terrain and negotiated probably over hundred of such steep "monsters". Legs feel it. I would prefer a few steady longer climbs a few hunder meters of rise each.
I don't really like compare these riders to you or I.
 
Reactions: Sciatic
Odds on the break taking the wrong loop at some point in the race?
That's the point members like Red Rick keep missing: This race is mostly supposed to be a mental challenge, not a physical one. You have to keep track of where you are and where you are supposed to go all the time. But wasn't there this video with van Aert blindfolded in the car and he still could tell exactly where he was...? So, probably doesn't change much...
 
Oct 31, 2018
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Though race to predict.

A few guys can win in a sprint of a small peleton; WVA, Colbrelli, M. Pedersen, MVP, Sagan. MVP not being 100%, that might be his biggest chance to win.

Then there are the guys that will want to break away; all the Slovenians (Pogacar, Roglic and Mohoric), Evenepoel, Asgreen. Problem for those guys is that WVA and Colbrelli seem to be flying, so it woun't be easy to get rid of them.

My money is on an outsider winning it from a big break away in the middle of the race that has all the big countries represented so nobody rides to close the gap. Names like Stuyven, Cort Nielsen or Trentin spring to mind.

Obviously there's always the chance Remco attacks with 70k's to go and nobody wants to close the gap with WVA in their wheels. Would love to see the forum explode if that happens. :eek:
 
Though race to predict.

A few guys can win in a sprint of a small peleton; WVA, Colbrelli, M. Pedersen, MVP, Sagan. MVP not being 100%, that might be his biggest chance to win.

Then there are the guys that will want to break away; all the Slovenians (Pogacar, Roglic and Mohoric), Evenepoel, Asgreen. Problem for those guys is that WVA and Colbrelli seem to be flying, so it woun't be easy to get rid of them.

My money is on an outsider winning it from a big break away in the middle of the race that has all the big countries represented so nobody rides to close the gap. Names like Stuyven, Cort Nielsen or Trentin spring to mind.

Obviously there's always the chance Remco attacks with 70k's to go and nobody wants to close the gap with WVA in their wheels. Would love to see the forum explode if that happens. :eek:
A bit funny that you don't include Asgreen in the guys that can win a reduced bunch sprint, but do include a non 100% fit MvdP.
I remember Asgreen outsprinting a 100% fit MvdP after a tough race, not so long ago ;-)
 
I just hope for Van Aert that he doesn't bite off more than he can chew. He tends to do that when he's in top form and feeling good.
An Evenepoel in front could be Van Aert's best friend in this respect, forcing him to take it easy so not to chase down his teammate.

Then again, we all know Evenepoel rides for himself, so it will be an interesting balancing act to see.
 
Reactions: noob and Sandisfan
A bit funny that you don't include Asgreen in the guys that can win a reduced bunch sprint, but do include a non 100% fit MvdP.
I remember Asgreen outsprinting a 100% fit MvdP after a tough race, not so long ago ;-)
A 2 up sprint is a very different beast to a small group sprint. Pidcock beat Van Aert in a 2 up sprint by the tiniest of margins but there is no chance he would feature on the final sprint in Paris as Wout did so brilliantly.
 
Reactions: Sandisfan
Though race to predict.

A few guys can win in a sprint of a small peleton; WVA, Colbrelli, M. Pedersen, MVP, Sagan. MVP not being 100%, that might be his biggest chance to win.

Then there are the guys that will want to break away; all the Slovenians (Pogacar, Roglic and Mohoric), Evenepoel, Asgreen. Problem for those guys is that WVA and Colbrelli seem to be flying, so it woun't be easy to get rid of them.

My money is on an outsider winning it from a big break away in the middle of the race that has all the big countries represented so nobody rides to close the gap. Names like Stuyven, Cort Nielsen or Trentin spring to mind.

Obviously there's always the chance Remco attacks with 70k's to go and nobody wants to close the gap with WVA in their wheels. Would love to see the forum explode if that happens. :eek:
I think you have summed it up very well. The mid-liners could well prosper from getting out ahead as satellite riders who never get reeled in as no team commits all out to a chase.

Italy, Belgium, Denmark, France and Slovenia all have at least 2 and In most cases 3+ credible cards to play where a hard race suits them and should look to follow or initiate every move in the last 100km. Slovenia and France especially don't have a true sprinter type to finish it off like a Colbrelli or WVA so should be looking to dynamite the race early and force everyone to work to their limits.
 
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A 2 up sprint is a very different beast to a small group sprint. Pidcock beat Van Aert in a 2 up sprint by the tiniest of margins but there is no chance he would feature on the final sprint in Paris as Wout did so brilliantly.
Yeah, van Aert is actually amazing in positioning in a bunch sprint, he seems to have more problems with timing in a 1 on 1 sprint.
That being said I think van Aert was simply not at his very best during the whole spring.
 
Reactions: Sandisfan
I think you have summed it up very well. The mid-liners could well prosper from getting out ahead as satellite riders who never get reeled in as no team commits all out to a chase.

Italy, Belgium, Denmark, France and Slovenia all have at least 2 and In most cases 3+ credible cards to play where a hard race suits them and should look to follow or initiate every move in the last 100km. Slovenia and France especially don't have a true sprinter type to finish it off like a Colbrelli or WVA so should be looking to dynamite the race early and force everyone to work to their limits.
In my eyes Cosnefroy in the form he showed a few times and might now still be in, has as good a chance to win a sprint as Colbrelli - only I think Colbrelli has better chances to be there after a long, hard race, but when it comes to that sprint, I don't think Colbrelli has the edge. The French also have Démare. With Alaphilippe not sprinting well recently I think they should not put all hopes on him and honestly the way the team looks I suppose they won't (I believe Démare, Cosnefroy, Laporte and also Sénéchal are not there as big work-horses, and Turgis has an outsider chance of his own.)
About Slovenia I agree, they should try with attacks.
 
Reactions: Sandisfan

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