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The hellingen are alive with the sound of Kapelmuur

Yeah, ok, it's not a very good title. It's been a long week. But we've got 'hellingen' and 'Kapelmuur' in the same sentence, so this must be good news, right? And oh, is it ever.


We all know that in his eternal quest for a better race more excitement a healthier sport mo' money Wouter Vandenhaute nixed our beloved, gorgeous, steep and cobbled Kapelmuur van Geraardsbergen from RVV, otherwise known as The Pinacle of Cycling.

Flanders cried, as did the organisers of the Tour of Belgium. So, on 23 May, coincidentally the day after my birthday so I shall be watching with a hangover, the ToB will be recreating the old RVV finish. The peloton will hit the Muur van Geraardsbergen, the Bosberg, and - new! - the Congoberg. Broerie will probably know every blade of grass besides this road, but a quick wiki - quiki? - says it's cobblesless - cobbless? - about a kilometer long, 5% average and depending from which side they hit it, 8 or 10% max.

The finish of the stage will be in Ninove, not Buggenhout which is the usual finish for ToB. The Muur will be ascended 'from the side'. I'm not sure what that means. I don't care. It's back!

Picture by Ukhh, used with permission