After we had livestreaming of the first three round of the 2017 Women’s WorldTour, Strade Bianche, the Ronde van Drenthe and Trofeo Alfredo Binda, unfortunately we won’t get much for Round 4, Gent-Wevelgem. But I’ve collected videos, photos and race reports from the WorldTour, and also some snippets from Round 2 of the Junior Nations Cup, and the U17 women’s races.
First, the WorldTour – please click on the Sporza highlights, to show that there is an audience for the sport. And here are the UCI highlights:
The 2017 Women’s World Tour and season in general have already shown us an increase in live women’s racing – from streams from the Australian 2017 openers, the Mitchelton Bay Crits and Deakin Women’s Race at the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race, to the entirely live Omloop van het Hageland, and the live last parts of the WorldTour races Strade Bianche, Ronde van Drenthe and Trofeo Aldredo Binda, we’ve been able to watch some amazing racing.
But the season won’t continue like that. There will be some fantastic live racing at the Healthy Ageing Tour and maybe at the Ronde van Vlaanderen, but what about at the Ardennes Week?
Just having an Ardennes Week is fantastic. The three races, Amstel Gold on 16th April, Flèche Wallonne Femmes on 19th, and the first ever Liège-Bastogne-Liège Femmes on 23rd, will each have a women’s race that’s part of the Women’s WorldTour – but as yet, we’ve had no news about whether we’ll be able to see them live, or even a good length of highlights, beyond 10 minutes on the UCI YouTube.
Sunday 26th March 2017
So far, the 2017 Women’s WorldTour has been fantastic for fans, with the first three rounds, Strade Bianche, the Ronde van Drenthe and Trofeo Alfredo Binda all being streamed live. But all good things must come to an end, and the run of live racing stops here. No stream for Gent-Wevelgem, I’m afraid. But we can still follow the race live on twitter, and hopefully there will be highlights too. I’ll tell you all about that, as well as how to follow the women’s Junior Nations Cup and U17 races as well. But first, a little bit about the race.
The Trofeo Alfredo Binda, the longest-running race in the UCI Women’s World Tour, is always a fan favourite, but this year even better than usual, because we could watch it all live – and there are also highlights of the Trofeo da Moreno, the junior Nations Cup race that runs on the same roads before the elite women.
Binda lived up to expectations – and with a surprise winner! The 2017 Classics season have been amazing so far, and if you’re worried that it couldn’t live up to the Strade Bianche and the Ronde van Drenthe, don’t – it was another unpredictable race, despite the unseasonable sunshine!
There will be a lot more highlights to come, but as we have some good things to watch already, I’ll put this up now, and then edit more in as I see it. I’ll start with the 9 min highlights from the UCI and 45min highlights from RAI, then some explanation about the livestream, as it was definitely idiosyncratic!
Sunday 19th March 2017
Round 3 of the 2017 Women’s WorldTour, and we’re back in Italy, in one of the cycling heartlands – the Varese Province in Lombardy. After the gravel roads of Strade Bianche, and the Dutch cobbles and man-made hill of Ronde van Drenthe, it’s a race for Classics riders with climbing skills – and even more importantly, descending abilities. And one of the special things about this race is that the junior stars of the future also get to ride on some of the same roads as their elite heroines, before the WorldTour race.
UPDATE! And the last 4 laps – 68km – will be LIVE, with the stream showing part of the race as well as highlights of the Junior race before the elites go fully live.
I’ll tell you how to watch the WWT Trofeo Binda, and follow the Junior Nations Cup Trofeo da Moreno below, but first a bit more about the race…
Every year I’m excited for the Ronde van Drenthe, and it never fails to disappoint! Of course, having around 50km of live streams and all the great highlights from different sources makes it easy to love, but really, this course sets us up for exciting racing, even on a day with absolutely no wind.
It’s all about positioning, as the roads are very narrow, with tight corners, so the race to the major course obstacles are full-on sprints. And these obstacles are tough, too: the unique cobbled paths in the forests, with mossy and sharp-edged rocks, rather than well-laid cobbles, and the three ascents of the VAM-berg, and artificial hill entirely made from landfill (read about it in Rouleur). And while the rest of it is flat, it’s know for tactical attacking throughout the race, but especially through the last 20k.
This year was fantastic, nail-biting right to the finish. Here’s the videos – UCI highlights, last half hour, and full replay.
OH MY GOODNESS!!!!! This was one of my all-time, ultra-favourite races, ever, ever, ever. That finale! Can you believe it? I adored it!
Three videos, to choose which you want to watch: The full hour of tv; the last 11 km; and the UCI’s highlights