Lesser known races 2024 edition

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Jul 4, 2023
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I agree they could certainly switch out some of the flat stages for mtn stages. But that final climb of the high mtn stage is indeed only about 6%, but it’s 30 km long and the last 6 km climb from 2200 m to 2800 m in elevation. That’s brutal and you don’t see that (or very rarely) in European races.
The last 6km do not climb from 2200 to 2800, that's fake news. The last 8.7km climb from 2329 to 2842 at 5.9%. Yes, it's 30km long and a hard climb but they could make it way harder. 6km from 2200 to 2800 would be 10% average which would be better. But the whole thing is only 5.7% average with no really steep sections. Plus there are no climbs before. And there is only one proper mountain stage. I said the route was ok but it's quite underwhelming
colombia-21-2024-stage-5-climb-b68f2692f7.jpg
colombia-21-2024-stage-5-profile-87c1028bbd.jpg
 
The route looks okay but surely they can do better in Colombia. Only 1 proper mountain stage and even in that there is hardly a km above 8%. I want to see proper scary mountains, ideally with some gravel, that are as hard as Angliru/Zoncolan, there must be some epic climbs in Colombia. Invest some money in this, turn it into a WT race and add 2 proper tough mountain stages (so it is 8 stages) and this could be epic especially with the fans over there. And I suspect the riders would love it; it could be the best stage race outside the grand tours
They can, but it would be murderous for the foreigners that go to that race at the beginning of the year. I have heard several times that the UCI gives them a strong recommendation about the race being balanced and not that hard. It is hard enough as it is now.

In fact, let's look at the circuit in Tunja in stage 3. The parcours says that it is flat. I am praying that Cavendish is not outside the time limit. 11 laps doing 2 climbs. Both account for 1.1 km @ 7.5% at 2700 m of altitude average. LOL. That's is like climbing the Liseran and doing a circuit up there!!!
 
The last 6km do not climb from 2200 to 2800, that's fake news. The last 8.7km climb from 2329 to 2842 at 5.9%. Yes, it's 30km long and a hard climb but they could make it way harder. 6km from 2200 to 2800 would be 10% average which would be better. But the whole thing is only 5.7% average with no really steep sections. Plus there are no climbs before. And there is only one proper mountain stage. I said the route was ok but it's quite underwhelming
colombia-21-2024-stage-5-climb-b68f2692f7.jpg
colombia-21-2024-stage-5-profile-87c1028bbd.jpg
I didn’t have a very readable profile map so the elevations were rough—thanks for providing a more detailed profile and data. Although it would be great if folks (not just you) could stop with the “fake news” phrase in their his forum, since that term has become completely politicized in the US.
Otherwise no argument with assessment of the overall route.
 
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Jul 4, 2023
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They can, but it would be murderous for the foreigners that go to that race at the beginning of the year. I have heard several times that the UCI gives them a strong recommendation about the race being balanced and not that hard. It is hard enough as it is now.

In fact, let's look at the circuit in Tunja in stage 3. The parcours says that it is flat. I am praying that Cavendish is not outside the time limit. 11 laps doing 2 climbs. Both account for 1.1 km @ 7.5% at 2700 m of altitude average. LOL. That's is like climbing the Liseran and doing a circuit up there!!!
Well the UCI just need to **** off and let them do what they want and give us what the people want. Also, if this beginning of the season thing is a problem they can move the race. It seems sad that there is so much potential there and they are missing out. I know it would be murderous for them but that's what I want to see. Top riders being destroyed by the route

"could stop with the “fake news” phrase in their his forum, since that term has become completely politicized in the US"
Sorry I'm very much not a Republican I just find the term kinda funny
 
The route looks okay but surely they can do better in Colombia. Only 1 proper mountain stage and even in that there is hardly a km above 8%. I want to see proper scary mountains, ideally with some gravel, that are as hard as Angliru/Zoncolan, there must be some epic climbs in Colombia. Invest some money in this, turn it into a WT race and add 2 proper tough mountain stages (so it is 8 stages) and this could be epic especially with the fans over there. And I suspect the riders would love it; it could be the best stage race outside the grand tours
Of course there are monster climbs in Colombia, but it's a February race. If you want those and are willing/able to deal with the commentary being in Spanish (and specifically the rather overexcitable Latin American style so familiar from soccer), tune in for the Vuelta a Colombia and the Clásico RCN, those get televised. I wish that they could give us a race that had the top stars and the best climbers of the South American péloton going all out, but it's not the early 80s anymore so we don't get strong fields at those 10-15 day races anymore sadly. And when we do get climbing races early season they tend to be Unipuerto. Could they do much better with the towns and cities that they're using while still not making the race too hard for a February race? Sure, definitely. But I'm afraid stages that look like queen stages at a Grand Tour or climbing monoliths like Letras are unlikely to ever be seen here. Vino as an MTF, being a legit HC climb, is a solid option in the circumstances.

As for monster climbs in Colombia - paved well enough to use in road racing - I can give you (I've bolded the true wall ones that seem to be particularly of interest to you):

Águila (22km, 6,5%)
Anzoátegui (31km, 5,1%)
Bocademonte (35km, 5,9%)
Boquerón (35km, 5,7%)
Boquerón de Chipaqué (27,7km, 6,1%)
Concordia (22km, 6,3%)
Crucero (28km, 6,2%)
Daza (39,5km, 5%)
El Pórtico (28km, 6,1%)
El Vino (30km, 5,7%)
Jericó (22km, 6,5%)
La China (12km, 9,2%)
La Coba Negra (25km, 5,8%)
La Cuchilla de Guasca (36km, 4,5%)
La Línea (22km, 7,7% OR 23km, 6,1%)
La Tribuna (29km, 5,6%)
La Uvita (25km, 5,9%)
Las Palmas (10km, 9,6%)
Letras (80km, 4% OR 31km, 5,7%)
Limonar (8,5km, 12,8%)
Loma del Escobero (9,6km, 9,7%)
Minas (42km, 4,3%)
Mondoñedo (26km, 5,7%)
Murillo (56km, 4,8%)
Nevado del Ruíz (36km, 5,5%)
Paramó del Berlin (57km, 4,7%)
Paramó del Verjón (33km, 5,3%)
San José de Miranda (33km, 5,4%)
Tequendama (37km, 5%)
Ventanas (34km, 5,4%)
Vilagarzón (19km, 7,8%, sterrato)
Zapatoca (14,4km, 7,7%)

There are also plenty of options they could use for shorter, super steep climbs, such as Cerro El Santísimo, on the shoulder of Paramó del Berlin. You could make a tougher version of Berlin by climbing all the way to the top from there but it's 8,4km at 9,4% to reach the junction where it links up to the main climb to Berlin, and the first 3km average 12,6%.
 
Jul 4, 2023
55
84
280
Of course there are monster climbs in Colombia, but it's a February race. If you want those and are willing/able to deal with the commentary being in Spanish (and specifically the rather overexcitable Latin American style so familiar from soccer), tune in for the Vuelta a Colombia and the Clásico RCN, those get televised. I wish that they could give us a race that had the top stars and the best climbers of the South American péloton going all out, but it's not the early 80s anymore so we don't get strong fields at those 10-15 day races anymore sadly. And when we do get climbing races early season they tend to be Unipuerto. Could they do much better with the towns and cities that they're using while still not making the race too hard for a February race? Sure, definitely. But I'm afraid stages that look like queen stages at a Grand Tour or climbing monoliths like Letras are unlikely to ever be seen here. Vino as an MTF, being a legit HC climb, is a solid option in the circumstances.

As for monster climbs in Colombia - paved well enough to use in road racing - I can give you (I've bolded the true wall ones that seem to be particularly of interest to you):

Águila (22km, 6,5%)
Anzoátegui (31km, 5,1%)
Bocademonte (35km, 5,9%)
Boquerón (35km, 5,7%)
Boquerón de Chipaqué (27,7km, 6,1%)
Concordia (22km, 6,3%)
Crucero (28km, 6,2%)
Daza (39,5km, 5%)
El Pórtico (28km, 6,1%)
El Vino (30km, 5,7%)
Jericó (22km, 6,5%)
La China (12km, 9,2%)
La Coba Negra (25km, 5,8%)
La Cuchilla de Guasca (36km, 4,5%)
La Línea (22km, 7,7% OR 23km, 6,1%)
La Tribuna (29km, 5,6%)
La Uvita (25km, 5,9%)
Las Palmas (10km, 9,6%)
Letras (80km, 4% OR 31km, 5,7%)
Limonar (8,5km, 12,8%)
Loma del Escobero (9,6km, 9,7%)

Minas (42km, 4,3%)
Mondoñedo (26km, 5,7%)
Murillo (56km, 4,8%)
Nevado del Ruíz (36km, 5,5%)
Paramó del Berlin (57km, 4,7%)
Paramó del Verjón (33km, 5,3%)
San José de Miranda (33km, 5,4%)
Tequendama (37km, 5%)
Ventanas (34km, 5,4%)
Vilagarzón (19km, 7,8%, sterrato)
Zapatoca (14,4km, 7,7%)

There are also plenty of options they could use for shorter, super steep climbs, such as Cerro El Santísimo, on the shoulder of Paramó del Berlin. You could make a tougher version of Berlin by climbing all the way to the top from there but it's 8,4km at 9,4% to reach the junction where it links up to the main climb to Berlin, and the first 3km average 12,6%.
Thanks for all the detail! I don't speak Spanish but I actually kinda like listening to commentary in a language I don't understand as somehow it makes it more exciting! I honestly think they just need to be brave with this and do it! However, to be honest the problem is the lack of money. If they had lots of money then they could get the big names and it would be great. Someone needs to invest in this I think. If they had money then I could see it being almost like the Strade Bianche of stage racing. It would have crazy passionate fans and an awesome route that could become iconic very quickly as I think most European cycling fans would love it! And over the winter it's actually a good place to go for altitude training anyway since it is away from the snow. I think someone just needs to be brave and invest and also to be brave with the route
 
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Jul 4, 2023
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I didn’t have a very readable profile map so the elevations were rough—thanks for providing a more detailed profile and data. Although it would be great if folks (not just you) could stop with the “fake news” phrase in their his forum, since that term has become completely politicized in the US.
Otherwise no argument with assessment of the overall route.
Oh I think your description of the climb is accurate for the other side so maybe that's why you were getting confused? Just makes the route setting even worse though. Sorry I know the term fake news is massively over the top but I find that kind of funny and it's sorta why I use it
 
The last 6km do not climb from 2200 to 2800, that's fake news. The last 8.7km climb from 2329 to 2842 at 5.9%. Yes, it's 30km long and a hard climb but they could make it way harder. 6km from 2200 to 2800 would be 10% average which would be better. But the whole thing is only 5.7% average with no really steep sections. Plus there are no climbs before. And there is only one proper mountain stage. I said the route was ok but it's quite underwhelming
colombia-21-2024-stage-5-climb-b68f2692f7.jpg
colombia-21-2024-stage-5-profile-87c1028bbd.jpg
Here's the profile from Gustavo Duncán and Asier Bilbao, who run the altimetriascolombia site, blog and Twitter. Gustavo posted here for a while a few years back. This is from direct personal data they've collected rather than using the GPS so should be a good detailed profile.

VINO+por+La+Vega.jpg
 
he's on the provisional start list (for Corratec), available on the website of the race:


I guess they somehow mixed him up with Antoine Debons, and PCS just copied it without double checking.

Just had a closer look at the startlist, and I'm starting to think it's not entirely up-to-date - looks like it's from 19/1 - not only the above-mentioned inclusion of the very much retired Duchesne, but also several riders who have been confirmed to be in other races.
 
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Of course there are monster climbs in Colombia, but it's a February race. If you want those and are willing/able to deal with the commentary being in Spanish (and specifically the rather overexcitable Latin American style so familiar from soccer), tune in for the Vuelta a Colombia and the Clásico RCN, those get televised. I wish that they could give us a race that had the top stars and the best climbers of the South American péloton going all out, but it's not the early 80s anymore so we don't get strong fields at those 10-15 day races anymore sadly. And when we do get climbing races early season they tend to be Unipuerto. Could they do much better with the towns and cities that they're using while still not making the race too hard for a February race? Sure, definitely. But I'm afraid stages that look like queen stages at a Grand Tour or climbing monoliths like Letras are unlikely to ever be seen here. Vino as an MTF, being a legit HC climb, is a solid option in the circumstances.

As for monster climbs in Colombia - paved well enough to use in road racing - I can give you (I've bolded the true wall ones that seem to be particularly of interest to you):

Águila (22km, 6,5%)
Anzoátegui (31km, 5,1%)
Bocademonte (35km, 5,9%)
Boquerón (35km, 5,7%)
Boquerón de Chipaqué (27,7km, 6,1%)
Concordia (22km, 6,3%)
Crucero (28km, 6,2%)
Daza (39,5km, 5%)
El Pórtico (28km, 6,1%)
El Vino (30km, 5,7%)
Jericó (22km, 6,5%)
La China (12km, 9,2%)
La Coba Negra (25km, 5,8%)
La Cuchilla de Guasca (36km, 4,5%)
La Línea (22km, 7,7% OR 23km, 6,1%)
La Tribuna (29km, 5,6%)
La Uvita (25km, 5,9%)
Las Palmas (10km, 9,6%)
Letras (80km, 4% OR 31km, 5,7%)
Limonar (8,5km, 12,8%)
Loma del Escobero (9,6km, 9,7%)

Minas (42km, 4,3%)
Mondoñedo (26km, 5,7%)
Murillo (56km, 4,8%)
Nevado del Ruíz (36km, 5,5%)
Paramó del Berlin (57km, 4,7%)
Paramó del Verjón (33km, 5,3%)
San José de Miranda (33km, 5,4%)
Tequendama (37km, 5%)
Ventanas (34km, 5,4%)
Vilagarzón (19km, 7,8%, sterrato)
Zapatoca (14,4km, 7,7%)

There are also plenty of options they could use for shorter, super steep climbs, such as Cerro El Santísimo, on the shoulder of Paramó del Berlin. You could make a tougher version of Berlin by climbing all the way to the top from there but it's 8,4km at 9,4% to reach the junction where it links up to the main climb to Berlin, and the first 3km average 12,6%.
Wow. Several climbs of over 50km at over 4% gradient meaning approaching 2 hours of climbing. RoboBasso in his prime would just melt everyone off his wheel and grind them into the dust.
 
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