Liège–Bastogne–Liège [ljɛʒ.bas.tɔɲ.ljɛʒ] , also known as La Doyenne ("The Old Lady"),[N 1] is a one-day classic cycling race in Belgium.[1][2][3] First run in 1892, it is the oldest of the five Monuments of the European professional road cycling calendar;[4] usually coming as the last of the spring classics. It is held annually in late April, in the Ardennes region of Belgium, from Liège to Bastogne and back.

Race details
DateLate April
RegionWallonia, Ardennes, Belgium
English nameLiège–Bastogne–Liège
Local name(s)Liège–Bastogne–Liège (in French)
Nickname(s)La Doyenne ("The Old Lady")
CompetitionUCI World Tour
TypeOne-day Classic
OrganiserAmaury Sport Organisation
Race directorChristian Prudhomme
Web Edit this at Wikidata
First edition1892 (1892)
Editions110 (as of 2024)
First winner Léon Houa (BEL)
Most wins Eddy Merckx (BEL) (5 wins)
Most recent Tadej Pogačar (SLO)

It is considered one of the most arduous one-day cycling events in the world because of its length and demanding course.[5] The most successful rider with five victories is Belgian rider Eddy Merckx, trailed by Italian Moreno Argentin in the 1980s and Spaniard Alejandro Valverde in the 2000s, who both won the race four times.[6]

Liège–Bastogne–Liège is part of the UCI World Tour competition. It is the concluding race of the Ardennes Classics series, which includes the Amstel Gold Race (not technically in the Ardennes, but treated as part of the series) and La Flèche Wallonne ('The Walloon Arrow'). Both Liège and La Fleche are organised by French owner Amaury Sport Organisation, which also organises the Tour de France and Paris–Roubaix.

It generally marks the end of the entire spring classics season, as the one-day races give way to the stage races and grand tours; Liège is generally followed almost immediately by the week-long Giro d'Italia warm-up, the Tour de Romandie. The parcours, with its multiple short, hard climbs, is seen as friendlier terrain for general classification riders and climbers than the gravelled and cobbled classics of early spring.

In 2017, the Liège–Bastogne–Liège Femmes was inaugurated and added to the UCI Women's World Tour,[7][8] becoming the second of the cycling monuments to introduce a women's edition after the Tour of Flanders in 2014. In 2020 a third women's 'monument', Paris-Roubaix Femmes was added, creating a triple crown of women's monuments.

History edit

Spa-Bastogne-Spa edit

Like many of cycling's classics, Liège–Bastogne–Liège was first organized by a French-Belgian newspaper (L'Express). The route has always stayed in the southern, French-speaking (and hillier), part of Belgium where Liège and Bastogne are located.[9]

Léon Houa won the first three editions of Liège–Bastogne–Liège in the late 19th century.

The race had its first running for amateurs in 1892, from Spa to Bastogne and back, over a 250 km distance.[2] As bicycles were expensive in the late 19th century, cycling was considered an exclusive sport for the wealthy, and the event was considered a "gentlemen's affair". 33 riders from the Liège cycling union and the Pesant Club Liégois, all Belgians and most of them from Liège, took the start. Only 17 finished. The course halfway turn point was the train station in Bastogne, chosen because of its convenience for race officials. Some tired riders abandoned the race in Bastogne and took the train back to Spa.[9] Léon Houa, a Liège native, won the race after 10 hours and 48 minutes on the bike. The second-place finisher, Léon Lhoest, came in at 22 minutes, the third, Louis Rasquinet, at 44 minutes.[10] Riders kept arriving for another five hours.

Houa won again the next year, over the same course, this time by a margin of a half hour. In 1894 the first race for professionals was held, and the average speed rose from 23.3 km/h (14.5 mph) to 25 km/h (16 mph). Houa concluded his third win, by seven minutes over Rasquinet. Frenchman Maurice Garin, who would later become the first winner of the Tour de France, finished fourth. After the inaugural three editions, the race was not organized for another 14 years, after which it was sometimes open only to amateurs and semi-professionals.

The race was resumed in 1908, with a start and finish in Liège for the first time. It was won by Frenchman André Trousselier. In 1909 the winner, Eugène Charlier, was disqualified because he had changed bikes. Victor Fastre was declared winner.[10] The event was cancelled during World War I but resumed in 1919. The race was mainly won by Belgians, but started to attract more riders from Flanders, the bike-crazed northern part of Belgium, who began to dominate the event. Fleming Alfons Schepers gained three victories in the Interwar period.

Ardennes Classic edit

Liège–Bastogne–Liège had some interruptions during World War II, but was again a calendar-fixture as from 1945 and began to attract some of the stars of European cycling. In 1951 the race was added to the Challenge Desgrange-Colombo, the competition that combined cycling's greatest races at the time. Swiss Ferdinand Kübler won the race in 1951 and 1952. Belgian favourite Raymond Impanis became the race's eternal runner-up, with four second places but never a victory.

In the late 1950s Fred De Bruyne won the race three times in his first three participations, equalling the former record of Houa and Schepers. In 1957 two riders were declared winner. Germain Derijcke was first over the finish line, but he had crossed a closed level crossing. Derijcke had won by a three-minute lead and judges felt he had not gained that much time from illegally crossing the railway, thereby not disqualifying him. Officials compromised to promote second-place rider Frans Schoubben to first as well.[11] In 1959 Liège–Bastogne–Liège became part of the Super Prestige, successor of the Desgrange-Colombo competition and early precursor of the UCI World Tour, making the Ardennes Classic one of the main cycling events of the year.

Record winner Eddy Merckx won Liège–Bastogne–Liège five times.

In 1969 began the era of cycling icon Eddy Merckx, who gained five victories, three of which consecutive, and a total of seven podium finishes. The 1971 race was run in appalling conditions, with snow and cold ravaging the peloton. Merckx gained one of his most memorable victories. The Belgian attacked in solo at 92 kilometers from the finish and soon had a five-minute advantage over his pursuiters. In a rare display, he suffered a sudden fatigue near the end and was joined by Georges Pintens. Pintens failed to distance a tired Merckx, and Merckx managed to outsprint his fellow Belgian to his second victory in the classic.[12] [13] In 1972 the finish moved to Verviers, 15 km from Liège, but because of fans' protest, this was a one-year occasion. The edition was again won by Merckx. In 1975 The Cannibal sealed his fifth and final victory, making him the sole record-holder of La Doyenne.

French cycling great, Bernard Hinault won the race twice, both times in harrowing weather conditions. In 1977 Hinault made a late escape from a six-strong group including a faltering Eddy Merckx; three years later he won the epic contest of 1980 in torrential snowfall and glacial temperatures (see below).[14]

In the 1980s, Italian classics specialist Moreno Argentin won the race four times, narrowly missing Merckx' record. Argentin also gained three victories in the sister classic La Flèche Wallonne, earning him the title of King of the Ardennes in his day.

Finish in Ans edit

In 1990, the Pesant Club Liégeois partnered with the Société du Tour de France, the organizer of cycling's flagships the Tour de France and Paris–Roubaix.[15] The partnership led to a more professional organization, resulting in a complete overhauling of the race course: the start and finish moved to different locations in Liège and five new climbs were included.[16]

In the late 1990s, Italians Michele Bartoli and Paolo Bettini continued a tradition of Italian victories in La Doyenne, with two wins each. In 1997, Bartoli and Laurent Jalabert made a decisive breakaway on the climb of La Redoute, 40 km from the finish. Both riders worked together and Bartoli broke away from the Frenchman on the steep slopes in the final kilometer of the race. Jalabert, a specialist of the Ardennes races, finished second two years in a row but failed to win the Doyenne. In 1999, Bartoli sought a third consecutive win, but his effort was thwarted by young Belgian Frank Vandenbroucke who controlled the race and stunned followers with his victory.[17]

Peloton in Liège–Bastogne–Liège 2007 near Tavigny.

In 2005, Kazakh Alexander Vinokourov and German Jens Voigt broke away from the peloton 80 km from the end. Although the escape seemed unlikely to stay away in modern cycling, the two riders made it to the finish ahead of the peloton, with Vinokourov beating Voigt in the sprint.[18][19]

Other memorable editions were the races of 2009 and 2010. In 2009, young Luxembourger Andy Schleck produced a solo breakaway to beat a strong field and win the race.[20] In 2010, Alexander Vinokourov concluded his second victory by outsprinting his breakaway companion Alexander Kolobnev.[21] The victory was controversial, not only because Vinokourov had recently returned to cycling after a doping ban, but also because it was suggested he had 'bought' the victory. Swiss magazine L'Illustré published e-mail correspondence between the winner and runner-up that suggests Vinokourov paid Kolobnev €100,000 not to contest the final sprint. Both riders were later charged with bribery by Belgian authorities.[22][23]

In recent years, Spanish allrounder Alejandro Valverde won four times, all sprint victories of a select group at the finish.[6][24]

Route edit

Present course edit

Route map of the 2011 edition.

The route of Liège–Bastogne–Liège crosses the two eastern Walloon provinces, Liège and Luxembourg, from north to south and back. Its distance is more or less fixed at 250–260 km. The race starts in the center of Liège, after which the course follows a straightforward 95 km (59 mi) route southwards to Bastogne, and a winding 163 km (101 mi) route back to Liège.

The second half of the course contains numerous climbs, such as the Stockeu, Haute-Levée, La Redoute, and the Côte de la Roche-aux-Faucons, before finishing in Liège. In the final 15 km of the race, the course makes a remarkable transition from the meadowy and agrarian landscapes in the Ardennes to the post-industrial urban scenery of Liège.

Course changes edit

Until 1991, the race finished in Liège's city center. In 1992, the finish moved to the industrial suburb of Ans, on the northwestern side of the city. The steep Côte de Saint-Nicolas was included in the final kilometres, along with a final climb to the finish in Ans.[25] The move implied profound changes to the character of the race, as climbers with a strong uphill-sprint in recent years often wait until the final stretches to launch their ultimate attack.

The route usually has some minor changes every year, with some climbs skipped and others added, but the traditional finale containing the Côte de La Redoute, Côte de la Roche-aux-Faucons and Côte de Saint-Nicolas was a fixture for 27 years.[N 2]

In 2019, the finish line moved back into the centre of Liège, with a flat run-in towards the finish. Both the Côte de Saint-Nicolas and the final climb to Ans were thereby removed from the route. The Côte de la Roche-aux-Faucons is the final named climb, topping out at 13 km from the finish[26] but the climbing continues after a short descent off of La Roche, with the final uphill topping out approximately 10.5 km from the finish line.[27]

Race characteristics edit

Demands edit

Profile of the 2012 edition

Liège–Bastogne–Liège is considered one of the most arduous one-day races in the world because of its length and succession of steep climbs. Every edition, about a dozen climbs – ranging in length, gradient and difficulty – are addressed, offering opportunities to attack. The British magazine Cycling Weekly stated:

In purely physical terms, this is probably the toughest classic: the climbs are long, most of them are pretty steep as well, and they come up with depressing frequency in the final kilometres.[2]

Four-times winner Moreno Argentin said:

Riders who win in Liège are what we call fondisti – men with a superior level of stamina. [The climb of] La Redoute is like the Mur de Huy in that it has to be tackled at pace, from the front of the peloton. The gradient is about 14 or 15 per cent, and it comes after 220 or 230 kilometers, so you don't have to be a genius to work out how tough it is. I remember that we used to go up with a maximum of 39 x 21 – it's not quite as steep as the Mur de Huy. A lot of riders mistakenly think you should attack on the hardest part, but in reality you hurt people on the slightly flatter section that comes after this.
Liège is a race of trial by elimination, where it's very unlikely that a breakaway can go clear and decide the race before the final 100 km [62 mi]. You need to be strong and at the same time clever and calculating — in this sense it's a complete test of a cyclist's ability.[28]

Climbs edit

The foot of the Côte de La Redoute in Aywaille.
The climbs in the 2012 edition

The most iconic hill is the Côte de La Redoute, the 2.0 km climb in Aywaille at an average gradient of 8.9% with slopes of over 20%. For a long time in the 1980s and 1990s La Redoute, at ca. 40 km from the finish, was the breaking point of the race and often the place where decisive breakaways were launched. In recent years the climb seems to have lost that particular role, as many riders are able to keep up with the pace on the climb and race favourites often wait until the last stages of the race to make a break.

In modern cycling, as in many bike races, the decisive stretches have evolved towards the final climbs of the day. The Côte de Saint-Nicolas is the last categorized climb of the race, with the top at 6 km from the finish in Ans. It is a precipitous and atypical climb because it is not part of the forested hills in the Ardennes, but located in the middle of the industrial suburbs of Liège along the Meuse river. In 2016, the organisers inserted the 600 m cobbled Côte de la Rue Naniot following the Côte de Saint-Nicolas, but preceding the finish in Ans. This turned out to be a one-off, however, as the race has not used the climb since.

Since the finish returned to Liège in 2019, the Côte de Saint-Nicolas has been removed from the route, and the decisive climbs are once again the Côte de la Redoute, Côte des Forges and Côte de la Roche-aux-Faucons.

Course changes are frequent from year to year. Climbs are sometimes cut or others included. These are the climbs in recent editions:[29]

Climbs of the 2019 Liège–Bastogne–Liège
km mark Name Distance Slope
75.0 Côte de la Roche-en-Ardenne 2.8 km 6.2%
121.0 Côte de Saint-Roch 1.0 km 11.2%
161.0 Côte de Mont-le-Soie 1.7 km 7.9%
169.5 Côte de Wanne 3.6 km 5.1%
176.0 Côte de Stockeu 1.0 km 12.5%
181.5 Côte de la Haute-Levée 3.6 km 5.6%
194.5 Côte du Rosier 4.4 km 5.9%
207.0 Col du Maquisard 2.5 km 5.0%
219.0 Côte de la Redoute 2.0 km 8.9%
231.0 Côte des Forges 1.3 km 7.8%
241.0 Côte de la Roche-aux-Faucons 1.3 km 11.0%

Weather edit

The weather in April is often unpredictable and the race has repeatedly been affected by harsh weather conditions. In 1919, 1957, 1980, and 2016 there was severe snowfall. The edition of 1980 was exceptionally hard: snow fell from the start and temperatures were near freezing point, leading commentators to call it 'Neige-Bastogne-Neige' (Snow-Bastogne-Snow). Bernard Hinault attacked with 80 km (50 mi) to go and finished nearly 10 minutes ahead.

A feature published by the British magazine, Procycling in 2000, described the infamous race:

A cold wind that blew across Belgium brought snow flakes and then a heavy fall within moments of the race starting. (...) Riders struggled on, with hands to faces to keep a view of the road. The race was an anonymous mass of plastic jackets and windcheaters. Spectators stood in goggles like upmarket snowmen, red-faced in the bitterness. Within the hour some teams had barely a man left on the road. They pulled out two dozen at a time, men like Gibi Baronchelli and Giuseppe Saronni, Lucien Van Impe and Jean-René Bernaudeau.[11]

Bernard Hinault, the winner, was one of just 21 riders to finish the race of 174 starters. It took three weeks for proper movement to return to two fingers of his right hand.[11]

Ardennes Classics edit

Liège–Bastogne–Liège is the concluding race of the Ardennes Classics series, which includes La Flèche Wallonne. Both are organised by ASO.

The Flèche Wallonne ("Walloon Arrow"), although younger than Liège–Bastogne–Liège, was longtime considered the more prestigious event of the two Ardennes Classics, showing how prestige and importance of a race can sometimes change over time. At one time, Flèche Wallonne and Liège–Bastogne–Liège were run on successive days known as Le Weekend Ardennais, with Liège–Bastogne–Liège organized on Saturday and the Flèche Wallonne on Sunday.

Only seven riders have won both races in the same year: Spaniard Alejandro Valverde three times (2006, 2015 and 2017), Swiss Ferdinand Kübler twice (in 1951 and 1952), Belgians Stan Ockers (1955), Eddy Merckx (1972), and Philippe Gilbert (2011) and Italians Moreno Argentin (1991) and Davide Rebellin (2004).

In 2011 Belgian Philippe Gilbert won Liège–Bastogne–Liège, completing a unique streak of classics victories in a span of ten days. Gilbert had previously won the Brabantse Pijl, Amstel Gold Race and La Flèche Wallonne, thus achieving a historic quadruple of victories in the hilly classics of April. Gilbert beat Luxembourg brothers Fränck and Andy Schleck in a sprint of three.[30]

Winners edit

Year Country Rider Team
1892   Belgium Léon Houa
1893   Belgium Léon Houa
1894   Belgium Léon Houa
1895–1907 No race
1908   France André Trousselier
1909   Belgium Victor Fastre
1910 No race
1911   Belgium Joseph Van Daele
1912   Belgium Omer Verschoore
1913   Belgium Maurits Moritz
1914–1918 No race
1919   Belgium Léon Devos
1920   Belgium Léon Scieur La Sportive
1921   Belgium Louis Mottiat La Sportive
1922   Belgium Louis Mottiat Alcyon–Dunlop
1923   Belgium René Vermandel Alcyon–Dunlop
1924   Belgium René Vermandel Alcyon–Dunlop
1925   Belgium Georges Ronsse
1926   Belgium Dieudonné Smets
1927   Belgium Maurice Raes
1928   Belgium Ernest Mottard
1929   Belgium Alfons Schepers
1930   Germany Hermann Buse Duerkopp
1931   Belgium Alfons Schepers La Française
1932   Belgium Marcel Houyoux
1933   Belgium François Gardier Cycles De Pas
1934   Belgium Theo Herckenrath La Française
1935   Belgium Alfons Schepers Dilecta
1936   Belgium Albert Beckaert Alcyon–Dunlop
1937   Belgium Éloi Meulenberg Alcyon–Dunlop
1938   Belgium Alfons Deloor Helyett–Hutchinson
1939   Belgium Albert Ritserveldt Dilecta–De Dion
1940–1942 No race
1943   Belgium Richard Depoorter Helyett–Hutchinson
1944 No race
1945   Belgium Jean Engels Alcyon–Dunlop
1946   Belgium Prosper Depredomme Dilecta–Wolber–Garin
1947   Belgium Richard Depoorter Garin–Wolber
1948   Belgium Maurice Mollin Mercier–Hutchinson
1949   France Camille Danguillaume Peugeot–Dunlop
1950   Belgium Prosper Depredomme Girardengo
1951    Switzerland Ferdinand Kübler Fréjus–Ursus
1952    Switzerland Ferdinand Kübler Fréjus
1953   Belgium Alois De Hertog Alcyon–Dunlop
1954   Luxembourg Marcel Ernzer Terrot–Hutchinson
1955   Belgium Stan Ockers Elvé–Peugeot
1956   Belgium Fred De Bruyne Mercier–BP–Hutchinson
1957   Belgium Frans Schoubben (victory shared with Germain Derycke) Elvé–Peugeot
1957   Belgium Germain Derycke (victory shared with Frans Schoubben) Faema–Guerra
1958   Belgium Fred De Bruyne Carpano
1959   Belgium Fred De Bruyne Carpano
1960   Netherlands Albertus Geldermans Saint-Raphaël–R. Geminiani–Dunlop
1961   Belgium Rik Van Looy Faema
1962   Belgium Jef Planckaert Flandria–Faema–Clément
1963   Belgium Frans Melckenbeeck Mercier–BP–Hutchinson
1964   Belgium Willy Blocklandt Flandria–Romeo
1965   Italy Carmine Preziosi Pelforth–Sauvage–Lejeune
1966   France Jacques Anquetil Ford France–Hutchinson
1967   Belgium Walter Godefroot Flandria–De Clerck
1968   Belgium Valere Van Sweevelt Smith's
1969   Belgium Eddy Merckx Faema
1970   Belgium Roger De Vlaeminck Flandria–Mars
1971   Belgium Eddy Merckx Molteni
1972   Belgium Eddy Merckx Molteni
1973   Belgium Eddy Merckx Molteni
1974   Belgium Georges Pintens MIC–Ludo–de Gribaldy
1975   Belgium Eddy Merckx Molteni–RYC
1976   Belgium Joseph Bruyère Molteni–Campagnolo
1977   France Bernard Hinault Gitane–Campagnolo
1978   Belgium Joseph Bruyère C&A
1979   West Germany Dietrich Thurau IJsboerke–Warncke Eis
1980   France Bernard Hinault Renault–Gitane
1981    Switzerland Josef Fuchs Cilo–Aufina
1982   Italy Silvano Contini Bianchi–Piaggio
1983   Netherlands Steven Rooks Sem–France Loire–Reydel–Mavic
1984   Ireland Sean Kelly Skil–Reydel–Sem–Mavic
1985   Italy Moreno Argentin Sammontana–Bianchi
1986   Italy Moreno Argentin Sammontana–Bianchi
1987   Italy Moreno Argentin Gewiss–Bianchi
1988   Netherlands Adri van der Poel PDM–Ultima–Concorde
1989   Ireland Sean Kelly PDM–Ultima–Concorde
1990   Belgium Eric Van Lancker Panasonic–Sportlife
1991   Italy Moreno Argentin Ariostea
1992   Belgium Dirk De Wolf Gatorade–Chateau d'Ax
1993   Denmark Rolf Sørensen Carrera Jeans–Tassoni
1994   Russia Eugeni Berzin Gewiss–Ballan
1995    Switzerland Mauro Gianetti Polti–Granarolo–Santini
1996    Switzerland Pascal Richard MG Maglificio–Technogym
1997   Italy Michele Bartoli MG Maglificio–Technogym
1998   Italy Michele Bartoli Asics–CGA
1999   Belgium Frank Vandenbroucke Cofidis
2000   Italy Paolo Bettini Mapei–Quick-Step
2001    Switzerland Oscar Camenzind Lampre–Daikin
2002   Italy Paolo Bettini Mapei–Quick-Step
2003   United States Tyler Hamilton Team CSC
2004   Italy Davide Rebellin Gerolsteiner
2005   Kazakhstan Alexandre Vinokourov T-Mobile Team
2006   Spain Alejandro Valverde Caisse d'Epargne–Illes Balears
2007   Italy Danilo Di Luca Liquigas
2008   Spain Alejandro Valverde Caisse d'Epargne
2009   Luxembourg Andy Schleck Team Saxo Bank
2010   Kazakhstan Alexandre Vinokourov Astana
2011   Belgium Philippe Gilbert Omega Pharma–Lotto
2012   Kazakhstan Maxim Iglinsky Astana
2013   Ireland Dan Martin Garmin–Sharp
2014   Australia Simon Gerrans Orica–GreenEDGE
2015   Spain Alejandro Valverde Movistar Team
2016   Netherlands Wout Poels Team Sky
2017   Spain Alejandro Valverde Movistar Team
2018   Luxembourg Bob Jungels Quick-Step Floors
2019   Denmark Jakob Fuglsang Astana
2020   Slovenia Primož Roglič Team Jumbo–Visma
2021   Slovenia Tadej Pogačar UAE Team Emirates
2022   Belgium Remco Evenepoel Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl Team
2023   Belgium Remco Evenepoel Soudal–Quick-Step
2024   Slovenia Tadej Pogačar UAE Team Emirates

Multiple winners edit

Active riders are in italic.

Wins Rider Years
5   Eddy Merckx (BEL) 1969, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975
4   Moreno Argentin (ITA) 1985, 1986, 1987, 1991
  Alejandro Valverde (ESP) 2006, 2008, 2015, 2017
3   Léon Houa (BEL) 1892, 1893, 1894
  Alphonse Schepers (BEL) 1929, 1931, 1935
  Fred De Bruyne (BEL) 1956, 1958, 1959
2   Louis Mottiat (BEL) 1921, 1922
  René Vermandel (BEL) 1923, 1924
  Richard Depoorter (BEL) 1943, 1947
  Prosper Depredomme (BEL) 1946, 1950
  Ferdinand Kübler (SUI) 1951, 1952
  Joseph Bruyère (BEL) 1976, 1978
  Bernard Hinault (FRA) 1977, 1980
  Seán Kelly (IRL) 1984, 1989
  Michele Bartoli (ITA) 1997, 1998
  Paolo Bettini (ITA) 2000, 2002
  Alexander Vinokourov (KAZ) 2005, 2010
  Remco Evenepoel (BEL) 2022, 2023
  Tadej Pogačar (SLO) 2021, 2024

Wins per country edit

Wins Country
61   Belgium
12   Italy
6   Switzerland
5   France
4   Netherlands
3   Ireland
2   Denmark
1   Australia
  United States

Liège–Bastogne–Liège Femmes edit

In 2017, Liège–Bastogne–Liège Femmes in the UCI Women's World Tour was inaugurated, following the example of La Flèche Wallonne Féminine and Women's Amstel Gold Race.[31] The first Liège–Bastogne–Liège Femmes, run on 23 April 2017, was won by Olympic champion Anna van der Breggen of the Netherlands.[32]

At 135.5 km, the race is approximately half the distance of the men's event. Hence, it does not start in Liège but in Bastogne, from where it heads north past Liège to finish in Ans on the same location as the men's race. The route features four categorized climbs: the Côte de la Vecquée, Côte de La Redoute, Côte de la Roche aux faucons and Côte de Saint-Nicolas. The top of the last climb of Saint-Nicolas comes at 5.5 km from the finish.[33]

Notes edit

  1. ^ Doyenne is the female form of doyen, a French word literally meaning "dean". In its metaphorical meaning it denotes the most respected or prominent person in a particular field, usually the most senior person. Hence, la doyenne [la dwa.jɛn] roughly translates as "the oldest, most respected lady".
  2. ^ Because of the composition of its immigrant population, and the many Italian flags hanging out the windows, Saint-Nicolas is nicknamed the "Italian hill".

References edit

  1. ^ "Tour de France 2015". Archived from the original on 2005-11-08. Retrieved 2011-02-26.
  2. ^ a b c Cycling Weekly, UK, 13 March 1993
  3. ^ Cycling Weekly, UK, 7 March 1992
  4. ^ The title "monument" has no official significance; it was first used by French daily L'Équipe, to indicate a race's unchanging place on the calendar but the term has become more widespread because of television commentaries, especially in the USA
  5. ^ "Spring Classics: How to win cycling's hardest one-day races". BBC Sport. Retrieved 27 March 2015.
  6. ^ a b "Alejandro Valverde takes Liege-Bastogne-Liege". Retrieved 3 October 2016.
  7. ^ "UCI announce 2017 Women's WorldTour calendar". 15 October 2016. Retrieved 17 October 2016.
  8. ^ "UCI unveils 2017 Women's WorldTour". VeloNews. 15 October 2016. Retrieved 17 October 2016.
  9. ^ a b Cycling Weekly, UK, 13 April 2002
  10. ^ a b "Liège–Bastogne–Liège". Bike Race Info. Retrieved 22 April 2012.
  11. ^ a b c Procycling, UK, May 2000
  12. ^ Bouvet, Philippe (2007), De Klassiekers, Lannoo, Belgium, ISBN 978-90-811691-10, p25
  13. ^ "1971 Liège-Bastogne-Liège".
  14. ^ "Liège–Bastogne–Liège's cold memories". Retrieved 2008-04-24.
  15. ^ "Liège favorite du Tour 2004". 20 April 2002. Retrieved 27 February 2012.
  16. ^ Fabien, Wille (2003). Le Tour de France : un modèle médiatique. Presses universitaires du Septentrion. ISBN 2-85939-797-3.
  17. ^ "presents the Luik-Bastenaken-Luik 1999".
  18. ^ Hedwig Kröner (24 April 2005). "Vino the Vainqueur". Cycling News. Retrieved 23 August 2011.
  19. ^ "sporza video: 2005: Aleksander Vinokoerov". sporza. Archived from the original on 2016-08-07. Retrieved 2015-05-26.
  20. ^ "Schleck takes impressive Liege win". BBC Sport. 2009-04-26. Archived from the original on April 28, 2009. Retrieved 2009-04-26.
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