The last event in the Belgian Ardennes series is also the most prestigious, the most painful, the most agonising, the hilliest and the longest.
With almost 260 km on the menu, the riders will be spending seven hours on their saddles. In general, after turning at Bastogne, it is on the way back to Liège that the tension mounts as they approach the final decisive struggle.
Taking a look into the long history of the race gives no sure-fire way of taming La Doyenne (the ‘Oldest’ in French) as this time-honoured race is nicknamed. Some have been betrayed by their feelings, others have misjudged the state of the competition, and then have learned from their mistakes.
In any case, it is best to show a good dose of humility when confronted with such a great dame.
Director of the Tour de France