Oh Flanders! Yesterday was one of the biggest days of the women’s cycling calendar, the Ronde van Vlaanderen, and I still can’t believe I got to commentate it! I have always wanted to watch it live, of course, and last year we came so close – but this year I saw the last 40km from the commentary box on the finish-line at Oudenaarde, so I could be biased when I say this was a hugely thrilling edition – but really, this had so much drama, fantastic racing, and a really interesting tactical decision I think we’ll be talking about for ages.
Here’s the full replay, with commentary from Rochelle Gilmore and me. You can’t watch it from Belgium, I’m afraid, and you may need to be logged into facebook – but if you can, please give it the hits – not because it’s me, but because it’s the official stream, and demonstrating the audience really makes a difference.
There’s also an unofficial video here, for people not in Belgium/without facebook.
Dan and I podcasted about what it was like commentating the race, with photos I took on my twitter.
Sporza’s official highlights (please do click for the stats) and another highlights:
There’ll be more videos to come, which I’ll edit in (and please do share anything else you see, in the comments below or on my twitter) and I have a load of great photo galleries and race reports – I definitely recommend reading these because the post-race quotes are great.
1. Coryn Rivera (USA) Sunweb, 4:02:38
2. Gracie Elvin (Aus) ORICA-Scott, s.t.
3. Chantal Blaak (Ned) Boels-Dolmans, s.t.
4. Annemiek van Vleuten (Ned) ORICA-Scott, s.t.
5. Lotte Kopecky (Bel) Lotto-Soudal, s.t.
6. Elena Cecchini (Ita) Canyon-SRAM, s.t.
7. Rasa Leleivyte (Ltu) Vaiano, s.t.
8. Katarzyna Niewiadoma (Pol) WM3 Procycling, s.t.
9. Janneke Ensing (Ned) Alé Cipollini, s.t.
10. Elisa Longo Borghini (Ita) Wiggle-High5, s.t.
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OMG – I just won Flanders. Wuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuut?! . . . . . . . #keepchallenging #creatingmemories #firstamerican #toeverwinflandersmanorwoman #derondevanvlaanderen #vlaanderen #deronde #rvvwomen #SCH #unbelievable #springclassics #flanders #teamworkmakesthedreamwork #cycling #womenscycling #uciwwt #uciworldtour #uci #frites #beer
Of course, the big question is what could have happened if Anna van der Breggen, who was looking so strong in that break of four, had been allowed to work. Elisa Longo Borghini talks about that in the Wiggle High5 team video:
If you enjoyed the race, please do go to the race sponsors page, click on them, and tell them on social media that you appreciate them. It really makes a difference – and there are more examples of small actions we can all take to help grow women’s cycling here.
VéloConcept‘s team video:
Two more videos – UCI focus on the race, and a 20 minute video backstage at the race
Gracie Elvin‘s second place was most definitely the result of her career so far.
HUGE thanks to my wonderful Patreon supporters, and everyone who believes in me and enables me to do women’s cycling work. Join my Patreon supporters over here, for as little as $/£/€ 2 a month