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5 Must-Watch Cycling Races 2023

5 Cycling Races 2023 You unbelievable, the 2023 season has already lasted more than a month, with competition taking place in Southern Europe. The Middle East, Australia, and South America.

Though some of the greatest names in the sport have already begun their seasons with victories. we are thrilled to see the top men and women in the sport back in action. However, these races are just the appetizer, teasing our palates for greater races to come.

Het Nieuwsblad Omloop

5 Must-Watch Cycling Races 2023

Since we're purists, we don't think the racing season officially began until the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad. Which is the first race held in Belgium, even though it officially began in mid-January. The "Omloop," as it's lovingly nicknamed, delivers everything. We love about the spring Classics: rain, wind, cobblestones, and lots of the short, steep "bergs" that dot the Flemish countryside. There are events for both men and women.

Belgian riders and teams frequently lead the men's division. Wout van Aert of Jumbo-Visma won the race last year following an assault shortly before the Bosberg, the day's last hill. However, he will not be returning to defend his title. Which means that one of Soudal-Quick Step's many talents has a chance to lead the Belgian superteam to a significant victory at home.

The Netherlands' Annemiek Van Vleuten (Movistar), who defeated her countrymate Demi Vollering (SD Worx) in the previous year's race, ought to be the main attraction in the women's division. Additionally, Van Vleuten utilized the Bosberg as a springboard for success, outlasting everyone on the cobbled climb save for Vollering. Van Vleuten, who is competing in her last season, will be back to defend her championship. Riders from Trek-Segafredo and SD Worx (final start list to be announced) will be looking to ruin her Omloop swan song.

Road Bianche

5 Must-Watch Cycling Races 2023

One of the hardest and most stunning races of the year is the Strade Bianche, which is held on the white gravel roads of Tuscany. It makes logical that the event's victory list is a Who's Who of the top riders in the sport, since this is a race in which the strongest rider always prevails.

For instance, only a rider as courageous as Slovenia's Tadej Pogaar (UAE Team Emirates) would attempt (and pull off) the extremely risky single attack that won the race 50 kilometers from the finish line in Siena last year. Prior to Pog, Mathieu van der Poel (2021), van Aert (2020), and Julian Alaphilippe (2019) of France had won the previous editions. Obviously, only the best can win in this event.

Having won the race in 2019 and 2020 and placed second to Belgium's Lotte Kopecky (SD Worx) last year, van Vleuten is once again the overwhelming favorite in the women's division. Along with Poland's Katherine Niewiadoma (Canyon-SRAM Cycling), a four-time third finisher who is still chasing the top step, and Italy's Elisa Longo Borghini (Trek-Segafredo), who won the event in 2017, should also be observed.

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The Sanremo – Milan

5 Must-Watch Cycling Races 2023

Milan-Sanremo (294 km), the first of cycling's five Monuments, is the longest race held in a single day. The riders claim that it's the simplest race to finish but the hardest event to win because the result is nearly always decided in the final 10K.

We adore the gradual build-up to the finish line of Milan-Sanremo, where riders head south from Milan towards the coast and then meander along the sea toward the climbs that comprise the Monument's classic finale. Of particular note is the Poggio. A brief but powerful climb that occurs just a few kilometers from the finish line and whose perilous descent frequently leaves more gaps than the climb itself. As an example. Matej Mohori of Slovenia (Bahrain Victorious) used a dropper post to overtake the others on the descent and risk all to earn his greatest victory to date.

Although there isn't a women's Milan-Sanremo. There is a prominent women's World Tour event the following day called. The Trofeo Alfredo Binda, which is a mainstay. The previous women's World Cup series and can be broadcast live on GCN. Elisa Balsamo (Trek-Segafredo) of Italy won. The event the previous year by outpacing her fellow countrymen Sofia Bertizzolo (UAE Team ADQ) and Soraya Paladin (Canyon-SRAM).

The Flanders Tour

5 Must-Watch Cycling Races 2023

The Tour of Flanders, sometimes referred to as the "Ronde van Vlaanderen". The region, is regarded by many riders as the most difficult one-day race on the schedule. Over 250 kilometers of the most difficult terrain in Belgium's Flemish region—cobblestones, narrow, tortuous roads, and brief. Steep climbs known as "bergs"—will be encountered in the men's competition. It can take years for a rider to become proficient enough in the course's subtleties to seriously compete for the victory because it is such a difficult course.

Van der Poel emerged victorious in the men's race last year, overcoming a slow start to the season and a formidable battle from Pogaar to win the Ronde for the second time in three years. Along with van Aert, who was in the best shape of his life but had to miss the competition due to a positive COVID-19 test, both riders are anticipated back this year. 

Expect another contest between the Dutch and the Italians in the women's division. With van Vleuten leading a field that should include her fellow countrymen Chantal van den Broek-Blaak (SD-Worx) and Marianne Vos (Jumbo-Visma), both of whom have won the competition in the past. It is Longo Borghini's turn to captain the Italians. Last year, Kopecky, the Belgian champion, won after SD Worx overcame van Vleuten, working over the Dutch superstar in the final.

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The Roubaix – Paris

5 Must-Watch Cycling Races 2023

 "Northern Hell" "Queen of the Classics," as it were. Paris-Roubaix is undoubtedly our favorite race of the year, whatever you want to name it. This 255km Monument's last section, which is composed of approximately 55km of the worst cobblestone roads in Northern France (spread over 29 "sectors"), is full of drama and always yields a deserved winner, even if it's a dark horse. The event this year was pushed back one week to suit the French national election of the previous year, However, it has returnd to its usual spot on the schedule, one week following the Tour of Flanders.

The third-ever women's Paris-Roubaix (145 km) will take place on Saturday. It will begin in Denain and follow the men's race's last 17 cobbled sectors all the way to the Roubaix velodrome finish line on Sunday. Both races have been won by one person: Long-Borghini won last year with a potent counterattack in the last hour when the lead group reunited, while Great Britain's Lizzy Deignan (Trek-Segafredo) won the first race with a long-distance attack in muddy, rainy conditions. Despite his lack of victory in this race, Van Vleuten is aiming for the hillier Ardennes Classics two weeks later. The Dutch will have Vos to cheer for in her place, and she would undoubtedly love to have a Roubaix cobble added to her palmares.

Dylan van Baarle of the Netherlands (INEOS-Grenadiers) won the first cobbled Monument in the history of his team in the men's race last year. He did it after attacking the lead group approximately 20 kilometers from the finish line in Roubaix. Additionally, this past off-season. The Dutchman relocated to Jumbo-Visma, providing van Aert with one of the most capable and seasoned partners imaginable.

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