The classic race Liège-Bastogne-Liège, which was won last year by Philippe Gilbert, will again take place tomorrow, with a race route which is more similar to the 2010 edition, when the race was won by Alexandre Vinokourov, than to the one of the 2011 edition!
Philippe Gilbert didn't really succeed his classics season so far this year and this could thus give him an extra motivation to try and win the Doyenne. Let's not exclude however the possibility for Joaquin Rodriguez to take a double Ardennes victory of for Jelle Vanendert to do even better than his 2nd place which he obtained at the Amstel Gold Race before taking the 4th place on top of the Mur de Huy in the Flèche Wallonne on Wednesday. Other favorites will start and end off their Ardennes campaign with this race, for example Damiano Cunego who did quite well in the Tour of Trentino where he won a stage and finished at the 2nd spot in the general classification. Who will be tomorrow's winner?
We'll only know that at the end of the afternoon, but you can already find out all the details of Liège-Bastogne-Liège 2012, also called La Doyenne (since it's the oldest classics race), with the race route on Google Maps, with the profile of the race and its time- and route schedule and even the possibility to do a virtual fly-over of the race in Google Earth!
The Liège-Bastogne-Liège 2012 race route
The Liège-Bastogne-Liège race route is almost the same every year, but the organiser brings in some changes anyway. This year the race route is not really based on last year's, but more on the 2010 race route, but it does modify the way the riders get from the Côte de Stockeu to the Col du Rosier, by continuing straight in Stavelot and go through Francorchamps. Indeed, with this change, the race will be able to climb the Côte de la Haute-Levée which was part of it in 2011 but which wasn't accessible in 2010.
After the start from the Place Saint-Lambert in Liège at 10.25AM (the advertising caravan will leave at 9.05AM), the real start will be on the N30 around 10.40AM, at 6.9 km from the place where the riders gathered together for the start. The race route between the fictive and real start will be via the Rue de l'Université, Place du 20 Août, Quai Paul van Hoegaerden, Boulevard Frère Orban, Quai de Rome, Pont de Fragnée, Pont de Frétinne, Quai des Ardennes, Pont de Chênée, Rue des Grands-Prés and the Rue d'Embourg which ends on the N30.
The first difficulty of the race will be at 70 kilometers from the start: the Côte de La Roche-en-Ardenne (2.8 km @ 6.2%).
Once the riders make a U-turn in Bastogne on the Rond-point La Doyenne (one of the rare roundabouts which are completely ridden in a cycling race: indeed, it will not be possible to cut off the round about on the left side of the road here since this roundabout is dedicated to La Doyenne all year long!), they'll get in the feeding zone which will be followed by the succession of climbs: the Côte de Saint-Roch (1 km @ 11%), Côte de Wanne at 97.5 km from the finish (2.7 km @ 7.3%), the Côte de Stockeu 6.5 km further (1 km @ 12.2%), the Côte de la Haute-Levée (3.6 km @ 5.7%), the Col du Rosier at 72.5 km from the finish (4.4 km @ 5.9%), the Côte du Maquisard (2.5 km @ 5%), Mont-Theux (2.7 km @ 5.9%), the Côte de la Redoute at 34.5 km from the finish (2 km @ 8.8%), the Côte de la Roche aux Faucons at 19.5 km from the finish (1.5 km @ 9.3%) and finally the Côte de Saint-Nicolas (1.2 km @ 8.6%). 5,5 kilometers further the finish will as usual be in the Rue Jean-Jaurès in Ans.
The second feeding zone will be in Stavelot at 84.5 kilometers from the finish.
The finish will be between 4.01PM and 5.06PM.
The Liège-Bastogne-Liège 2012 race route on Google Maps, the profile and the time- and route schedule
Hereunder you'll find the race route on Google Maps, the profile and the time- and route schedule of Liège-Bastogne-Liège 2012. Click on the images to open them:
On a Sunday like this, you'll probably be able to watch La Doyenne on TV. If that's indeed the case, here's where to go:
- in France on Eurosport from 2.15PM till 5.00PM (also on Eurosport in 59 other countries) or on France 3 from 4.05PM till 5.15PM
- in Belgium on RTBF (la Une) and on Sporza at Canvas from 2.25PM till 5.25PM
- on TV2 in Denmark and Norway, on Teledeporte in Spain, on RAI in Italy, on RTL in Luxembourg, on Nederland 1 in The Netherlands, on RSI/RTS/SRF in Switzerland, on SBS in Australia, on RDS in Canada, on J Sports in Japan, on Sky TV in New-Zealand, on SuperSport in 45 African countries, on Eurosport Asia in 16 Asian countries and on Dubai Sports in 25 Middle-East countries
The team presentations
For those of you who are lucky to be in Liège right now, you might be interested to know that the team presentations will take place between 2.30PM and 4.30PM at the Palais des Princes-Evêques in the future start city of the Tour de France 2012! by Thomas Vergouwen
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