LAST YEAR'S WIN­NER ON…

Procycling - - The Guide - Chan­tal Blaak

is spe­cial be­cause it’s un­pre­dictable. It’s a kind of Clas­sic be­cause it’s al­ways cold and windy and there are cob­ble­stones and the Vam­berg. You can’t re­ally call the Vam­berg, which is an old refuse tip, a climb, but it’s short and steep so you need power there. What’s re­ally dif­fi­cult about it is po­si­tion­ing. There’s a re­ally sharp corner to the left to ac­cess it and the tar is nar­row – it’s a bike path, ba­si­cally – so you can fit just three rid­ers side by side. You have to be in the first 10. The cob­bles aren’t like in Flan­ders. There are much big­ger gaps be­tween the stones and the gaps are filled with sand. They are dif­fi­cult to ride be­cause you can’t pick a good line. They’re also un­der woods so that can make them slip­pery. The course changes a bit which also makes it un­pre­dictable. My ex­pe­ri­ence of this race is that it suits me, but there were also years when I hated it be­cause you never know what can hap­pen. Mostly, I love it.

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