Ronde van Vlaanderen – Tour des Flandres 2024

From Antwerpen to Oudenaarde. The toughest one day race of them all. In recent editions, Mathieu van der Poel has been the rider to beat. The first win was against Wout van Aert in 2020. In 2021, he was beaten in the sprint by Asgreen. In 2022, he took his second win after a fantastic duel between him and Pogacar. Last year, he was distanced on the climbs. That had not happened since 2019 where Alberto Bettiol won. Who can challenge him in 2024?


There are some changes to this year’s edition. The changes are between the first ascent of Oude Kwaremont and the second ascent that includes the Paterberg. Overall, it shouldn’t change much.

Starting in Anterwerpen and just south of Oudenaarde


It is difficult to tell, when the finale begins. Is it the first ascent up Oude Kwaremont? I would argue that statement. Here, we will see moves from many teams. The reason it starts so far out is fairly simple; in the past few editions the big three (there is no big four with Pidcock, I’m sorry to say) have all been present. Wout van Aert, Mathieu van der Poel and Pogacar. And they really love to give it full gas on the second ascent of Oude Kwaremont 55 km out. The stage beforehand is to get up the road beforehand.

This edition is different. No Pogacar. No Visma-Lab numirical dominicance. You could argue it is everyone against Mathieu van der Poel. Therefore, we will likely see him follow the same script as the past years. With roughly 57 km left, the Oude Kwaremont and Paterberg will cause the big split. From here on out, we know the losers and we’re yet to find the winner.

Koppenberg follows just after, and it is tough to organize a strong chase after riding 230 kilometers. Taainberg doesn’t make that easier and people in the second group start thinking more about the podium than winning. That is just how racing goes. A second time up Oude Kwaremont and Paterberg usually create the final selection. Either a solo winner or a very, very reduced group (a pair) often make it to the line.

Here you have Oude Kwaremont (57 km left & 18.5 km left)

Paterberg (52 km left & 13.5 km left)

Kopenberg (45 km left)

Taainberg (37 km left)

Kruisberg-Hotondberg (28.5 km left)

Then do remember, we have another Oude Kwaremont + Paterberg. And then, the ride home.


We might see echelons near the first ascent of Oude Kwaremont. It does look like the wind peaks here. Then, it seems the wind wears off as it often does before rain. It will start raining roughly 100 km from the line, it will make it a much more selective.

How will the race unfold?

This preview would have a different ending, had it not been for the crash on Wednesday. A tough winter and dreams got lost that day. This is more a rambling about, can you beat Van der Poel?

It will be a no. This race is a different beast than anything else we’ve seen this year. This distance. The repeated efforts. You can’t compare it to anything else. Visma-LAB and LIDL-Trek are both hindered and both are without very important names (Laporte + Stuyven). It makes beating the Dutchman very, very difficult.


Mathieu van der Poel – I think he will take a third win.

Jorgensen – He is the underdog. What a spring. The thing going in his favor will be the amount of climbing. The way he just sat on Evenepoel’s wheel in Paris-Nice, on a rainy day too, on a steep incline. It almost makes you wonder, can he follow the accelerations tomorrow?

Van Baarle – never write him off. 2nd in De Ronde and 1st at Paris-Roubaix in 2022. He is an elite rider who on his best days can win. His result in E3 was mainly due to a poorly-timed mechanical.

Benoot – a rainy edition is good news for him. Still, he has always struggled with the two monuments.

Mohoric – a different approach. He has not been able to follow the very best this year, the results show that. However, he tends to have an engine that is matched by few on a long day. I’d imagine he can top-10 tomorrow.

Bettiol – a romantic rider. When you have cramps in Dwars Door Vlaanderen, it is difficult to imagine him winning Ronde van Vlaanderen.

Küng – he has the engine for this stuff. A top-10 as usual.

Mads Pedersen – We will have to see. It is difficult not being biased right here. It is almost like trying to predict the weather, we will just have to see how it turns out for him. Hopefully, he turns out better than I expect and can be a threat for Paris-Roubaix.

Skujins – I’m very impressed with him this spring. A top-10.

Wellens – A top-10. He is a very good rider, who doesn’t mind the rain.

Who will win?

It feels wrong giving Ronde van Vlaanderen such little effort from myself. The race just lost the excitement a few days ago from me, when his two biggest rivals this year hit the deck.

It should be a win for Mathieu van der Poel. Jorgensen and Küng for second and third.

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