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Question What's your favorite race course (to watch)...

Is race course design a factor for the viewers / spectators or is it really down to the individual riders' participating, the competition and the race dynamics? Or is it the race conditions on the race day that determines the excitement and attractiveness of a race? Or maybe all in a mix?

Personally I find some race courses more interesting to watch than others and some are also talked about as "classic" and "epic". We have some very famous race courses that always seems to produce interesting races such as Namur, Heusden Zolder and Zonhoven. Then there are courses race with interesting attributes such as tricky off-cambers, stairs, bridges, pump tracks etc to make them interesting e.g. Sven Nys GP / Baal, Leuven / Rectavit and Loenhout. Then again some race courses seem less inspiring (albeit still with their own merits) e.g. Dendermonde.

Ranking the different overall components I would have it 1) participating riders, 2) race dynamics, 3) course conditions and 4) course design while if focusing only on course design my preferences would be either a difficult sand course (e.g. Zonhoven) or very technical and demanding mud course (Namur).

What is your favorite race course to watch and why?

ps. What do we know about riders preferences? It is said that Van der Poel does not favor Koppenberg?
Good question/ discussion!!
I like to think of CX as an off road discipline, and like to see technical courses for the top tier races (World Cup, World Championship). I'm also not a big fan of mud, yes we have it in winter, but CX has to be more than just mud.
Saying that, in a season, you'd like to see a mix of course types, that favour different riders skillsets, etc

My favourites are: Namur (I'd love to see it in October/November), Gavere, Overijse, Beringen, Iowa City, Koksijde, Zonhoven , Zolder - I also liked the new course in Herentals, a good mix of features. Some of the EKZ Crosstour courses in Switzerland are quite nice.

My least favourites are some of the recent World Championship courses, which haven't been particularly brilliant; mainly flat & featureless, with bridges put in for any climbs. Dubendorf was pretty average - they picked the only flat part of Switzerland.

And another moan; the same courses seem to get used for the World Championships; haven't the Czech Rep got anywhere else apart from Tabor? It's not a bad course, but how many times has it been used now?
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Shame we can't vote multiple times as I have more than one favourite course. I enjoy any of the Kerstperiode races, although my favourite course from that is the Zolder race. The Koppenberg old course for me was better than the new one, as a spectacle, but from that series I prefer the Lille race. Always good action in the weeks after the worlds. Over the past couple of years of its presence, I quite like the Hulst course in the Ethias series.

  • Gieten
  • Hulst
  • Lille
  • Zolder
  • Namur
  • Overijse
Favourite old raced course:
  • Ronse
  • Old Koppenberg
  • Milton Keynes
  • Spa Francorchamps
  • Hoogerheide
  • Hasselt
Favourite uci courses raced:
  • Bradford (uk)
  • Ipswich (uk)
  • Pembrey (uk)
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