Ronde van Vlaanderen Route Undergoes Minor Changes [Update: "Video"!]

Fotoreporter Sirotti

Hated last year's course? Hate again...

So my new Facebook friend, Ronde Van Vlaanderen, posted on my wall today. Something about a new trail, posted on line. Needless to say, I went in.

Ronde_medium

Here's the lineup of hills and cobbles sectors:

1. Tiegemberg, 91km -- new

2. Taaienberg, 113km

3. Eikenberg, 120km

Holleweg

Ruiterstraat

Kerkgate

Jagerij - new

4. Molenberg, , 135km

Paddestraat

5. Rekelberg

6. Berendries, 155km

7. Valkenberg, 160km

8. Oude Kwaremont, 183km

9. Paterberg, 185km

10. Koppenberg, 193km

Mariaborrestraat

11. Steenbekdries, 198km

Donderij

12. Kruisberg/Hotond, 210km

13. Oude Kwaremont, 220km

14. Paterberg, 223km

15. Hoogberg/Hotond, 230km

16. Oude Kwaremont, 240km

17 Paterberg, 243km

One new climb and one new cobbled sector. Out from last year's course are the Huisepontweg and Doorn sectors. This is a slight subtraction on the cobbles side. Adding the Jagerij is fine -- and if I ever open a Flemish deli I'm calling it "Slagerij op de Jagerij" -- but that's one middlin inclusion and two big subtractions. The Doorn sector is your basic bumpy, narrow lane; the Huisepontweg is noted for the lovely, boxy windmill by the road; and taken together that's over 3km of cobbles removed. But the cobbles total is hard to gauge; for all we know there are several extra patches of stonework in the early part of the race that aren't listed in the roadbook.

As for the hellingen, all the items from last year's menu are back, in the same order, for those of you who are still complaining about the subtraction of the Muur. [Goddammit.] Like stern parents imposing a punishment, Flanders Classics are acting in a clear and steadfast manner on this subject. Muur fans need to settle in for the long haul. This battle isn't over, not by a long shot. Anywho, adding the Tiegemberg is the only change, and that's about like taking in your car and getting a new gas cap. Is it better? Yes. Will anyone notice? No.

More RvV details to come. Trust me.

[Update] Like this! A 1970s-technology-style diagram of the finale:


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