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The Ardennes classics are three cycling classics held in mid-April in the Belgian Ardennes and southern Limburg in the Netherlands: Amstel Gold Race, La Flèche Wallonne and Liège–Bastogne–Liège.[1] The races are notable for their hilly courses, and often have similar riders competing for the top positions as the races are held close after each other. In recent years, the three classics are held within an 8-day timeframe.

Contents

HistoryEdit

The only male winners of the "triple" are Davide Rebellin in 2004 and Philippe Gilbert in 2011. Gilbert also won the Brabantse Pijl, another important hill classic in mid-April, winning the "quadruple" that year. Other riders to win all three races, though not in a single year, are Danilo Di Luca, Michele Bartoli, Eddy Merckx and Bernard Hinault.

In 2017, women's races for all three of the Ardennes classics were held for the first time, with a women's Liège–Bastogne–Liège making its debut alongside a revival of the Women's Amstel Gold Race, which had previously been held from 2001 to 2003, and La Flèche Wallonne Féminine, which has been held since 1998.[2][3][4] Anna van der Breggen immediately clinched the triple by winning all three races, being followed by team-mate Lizzie Deignan in second and Katarzyna Niewiadoma in third in all three events.[2]

There is no official competition connecting the three races, although there have been classifications in the past for the two Walloon races.

In recent years, these three hill classics are held in the second half of April, following a similar set of the Cobbled classics.

Later in the year, there are two similar 'trebles' in Italy: the Trittico Lombardo with the Tre Valli Varesine, Coppa Ugo Agostoni and Coppa Bernocchi in the Lombardy Region, and the Trittico di Autunno (Autumn Triptych) with Milano–Torino, Giro del Piemonte and Giro di Lombardia.

Winners since 1990Edit

Year Amstel Gold Race La Flèche Wallonne Liège–Bastogne–Liège
1990   Adri van der Poel (NED)   Moreno Argentin (ITA)   Eric van Lancker (BEL)
1991   Frans Maassen (NED)   Moreno Argentin (ITA)   Moreno Argentin (ITA)
1992   Olaf Ludwig (GER)   Giorgio Furlan (ITA)   Dirk de Wolf (BEL)
1993   Rolf Järmann (SUI)   Maurizio Fondriest (ITA)   Rolf Sørensen (DEN)
1994   Johan Museeuw (BEL)   Moreno Argentin (ITA)   Evgeni Berzin (RUS)
1995   Mauro Gianetti (SUI)   Laurent Jalabert (FRA)   Mauro Gianetti (SUI)
1996   Stefano Zanini (ITA)   Lance Armstrong (USA)   Pascal Richard (SUI)
1997   Bjarne Riis (DEN)   Laurent Jalabert (FRA)   Michele Bartoli (ITA)
1998   Rolf Järmann (SUI)   Bo Hamburger (DEN)   Michele Bartoli (ITA)
1999   Michael Boogerd (NED)   Michele Bartoli (ITA)   Frank Vandenbroucke (BEL)
2000   Erik Zabel (GER)   Francesco Casagrande (ITA)   Paolo Bettini (ITA)
2001   Erik Dekker (NED)   Rik Verbrugghe (BEL)   Oscar Camenzind (SUI)
2002   Michele Bartoli (ITA)   Mario Aerts (BEL)   Paolo Bettini (ITA)
2003   Alexander Vinokourov (KAZ)   Igor Astarloa (ESP)   Tyler Hamilton (USA)
2004   Davide Rebellin (ITA)   Davide Rebellin (ITA)   Davide Rebellin (ITA)
2005   Danilo Di Luca (ITA)   Danilo Di Luca (ITA)   Alexander Vinokourov (KAZ)
2006   Fränk Schleck (LUX)   Alejandro Valverde (ESP)   Alejandro Valverde (ESP)
2007   Stefan Schumacher (GER)   Davide Rebellin (ITA)   Danilo Di Luca (ITA)
2008   Damiano Cunego (ITA)   Kim Kirchen (LUX)   Alejandro Valverde (ESP)
2009   Sergei Ivanov (RUS)   Davide Rebellin (ITA)   Andy Schleck (LUX)
2010   Philippe Gilbert (BEL)   Cadel Evans (AUS)   Alexander Vinokourov (KAZ)
2011   Philippe Gilbert (BEL)   Philippe Gilbert (BEL)   Philippe Gilbert (BEL)
2012   Enrico Gasparotto (ITA)   Joaquim Rodríguez (ESP)   Maxim Iglinsky (KAZ)
2013   Roman Kreuziger (CZE)   Daniel Moreno (ESP)   Dan Martin (IRL)
2014   Philippe Gilbert (BEL)   Alejandro Valverde (ESP)   Simon Gerrans (AUS)
2015   Michał Kwiatkowski (POL)   Alejandro Valverde (ESP)   Alejandro Valverde (ESP)
2016   Enrico Gasparotto (ITA)   Alejandro Valverde (ESP)   Wout Poels (NED)
2017   Philippe Gilbert (BEL)   Alejandro Valverde (ESP)   Alejandro Valverde (ESP)
2018   Michael Valgren (DEN)   Julian Alaphilippe (FRA)

StatisticsEdit

  • Active cyclists marked in bold.

Most Ardennes classics wins per male riderEdit

Rank Name Total wins Amstel Gold Race La Flèche Wallonne Liège–Bastogne–Liège
1 Eddy Merckx 10 2 (1973, 1975) 3 (1967, 1970, 1972) 5 (1969, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975)
2 Alejandro Valverde 9 0 5 (2006, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017) 4 (2006, 2008, 2015, 2017)
3 Moreno Argentin 7 0 3 (1990, 1991, 1994) 4 (1985, 1986, 1987, 1991)
4 Philippe Gilbert 6 4 (2010, 2011, 2014, 2017) 1 (2011) 1 (2011)
5 Bernard Hinault 5 1 (1981) 2 (1979, 1983) 2 (1977, 1980)
Jan Raas 5 5 (1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1982) 0 0
Davide Rebellin 5 1 (2004) 3 (2004, 2007, 2009) 1 (2004)
8 Ferdi Kübler 4 0 2 (1951, 1952) 2 (1951, 1952)
Michele Bartoli 4 1 (2002) 1 (1999) 2 (1997, 1998)
10 Marcel Kint 3 0 3 (1943, 1945, 1945) 0
Léon Houa 3 0 0 3 (1892, 1893, 1894)
Alfons Schepers 3 0 0 3 (1929, 1931, 1935)
Fred De Bruyne 3 0 0 3 (1956, 1958, 1959)
Alexander Vinokourov 3 1 (2003) 0 2 (2005, 2010)

Most Ardennes classics wins per female riderEdit

Rank Name Total wins Amstel Gold Race La Flèche Wallonne Féminine Liège–Bastogne–Liège
1 Anna van der Breggen 6 1 (2017) 4 (2015, 2016, 2017, 2018) 1 (2017)
2 Marianne Vos 5 0 5 (2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2013) 0
3 Nicole Cooke 4 1 (2003) 3 (2003, 2005, 2006) 0
4 Fabiana Luperini 3 0 3 (1998, 2001, 2002) 0

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Ardennes Classics". Cycling Weekly. Retrieved 19 April 2015. 
  2. ^ a b "The UCI Women's WorldTour Chronicle". Union Cycliste Internationale. 24 April 2017. Retrieved 29 April 2017. 
  3. ^ O'Shea, Sadhbh (13 April 2017). "Amstel Gold Race Women - Preview". cyclingnews.com. Retrieved 29 April 2017. 
  4. ^ O'Shea, Sadhbh (17 April 2017). "Fleche Wallonne preview: Can anyone catch Van der Breggen?". cyclingnews.com. Retrieved 29 April 2017.