Susanne Andersen Articles
It was a long time coming but the first women’s Paris Roubaix finally took place in 2021. We’d been teased that Paris Roubaix Femmes was taking place after the COVID lockdown in 2020 but further measures derailed the race. It was the same story in the spring of 2021 but finally, in October 2021, we saw a women’s peloton on the cobbles.
The first Women’s Tour of Flanders took place in 2004. The route followed the last 55km of the men’s race with a bit before it to take the distance up to 94km. The finish parcours from that time is now used for Omloop het Nieuwsblad. Riders climb Kapelmuur before riding the tree-lined Bosberg. Zulfiya Zabirova won the first race with an attack on Kapelmuur itself.
The Women’s Gent Wevelgem has been running since 2012. Taking place on the same day as the men’s race, the women’s version starts from Ypres and finishes in Wevelgem. The route takes in the infamous Kemmelberg, although the women haven’t tackled the steepest Ossuary side until this year’s race.
Since the race’s inception in 2018, the race has seen 3 big bunch sprints and 1 notable solo win by Grace Brown last year. The parcours is super flat with nothing of note to worry about. The wind is about the only hazard for the riders but even that isn’t forecast to be too bad on Thursday.
Nokere Koerse is still a fairly new race on the women’s calendar. The first edition took place in 2019 and saw Lorena Wiebes power up the Nokereberg to take the overall win. Canyon SRAM’s Lisa Klein and Lotto Soudal’s Lotte Kopecky joined Wiebes on the podium.