How Did Quick-Step Really Win The Tour Of Flanders? | The GCN Show Ep. 273

Published on April 3rd 2018


This week in the world of cycling, we learnt that buying a bike can actually make you money. Not by racing or delivering post or someone's dinner, actually just buying a bike, and then selling it. Subscribe to GCN: Register your interest in the GCN Club: Get exclusive GCN gear in the GCN shop! Enter our Orbea Orca M20 Team-D Give Away here The GCN Show's Wiggle of Fortune now CLOSED for this week. Check out the latest GCN Show to enter now. We also learnt this week that Quickstep are the kings of the classics. Did we learn that this week? There’ve been one or two clues over the years… OK, we’d kind of already learned that weeks, or even years ago, but Sunday reaffirmed it, with a second consecutive win at the Tour of Flanders, two riders on the podium and three in the top ten. So how did they do it? How do they do it? To find out more about Flanders we probably need to look at the bigger picture, this was not an anomaly was it. This year alone, they have won Le Samyn, Dwars Door West Vlaanderen, Nokere Koerse, the Handzame classic, the one day of De Panne, E3 Harelbeke, Dwars Door Vlaanderen and now the Tour of Flanders - 8 races, and with 6 different riders. The only one day Belgian race that they didn’t win was Gent Wevelgem. Which probably explains why 2nd placed Elia Viviani cried so much on the finish line. What makes this run of incredible success even more impressive don’t forget is the fact that the team sizes are reduced this year, so in the one day races it is only 7 man teams, vs the 8 of previous years. And also the riders that they lost in 2017 - Boonen most notably, but also the ever consistent and dangerous Matteo Trentin. Julien Vermote too, whilst not necessarily threatening the podium, is a big engine to lose for the earlier part of the race. They also lost Fernando Gaviria to injury this year didn’t they, although they don’t appear to have missed him. So, how are they still controlling and dominating? S Well, we think it’s down to three things. Tactics, numerical supremacy in the finale, and also the lack of an outright leader. That’s right - they are following a pattern at these races. Use three riders to control the earlier part of the race, normally Declercq, Keisse and Senechal, and then have four riders with a free role in the finale, all of whom are in with a shout. Terpstra, Gilbert, both monument winners in the past, and then Stybar and Lampaert, neither of whom have won a monument, yet. It’s a tactic they appear to pull off with incredible regularity, even though everyone knows what their plan is. Once you’ve managed to get 4 riders into a final selection of 20 or so, then you’re in a pretty good position. Watch more on GCN... Ultegra vs Dura Ace, what's the difference? 📹 Music: Viper Creek Club - Because I Know (Instrumental) Jonas Elander - Afternoon Swing 3 Magnus Ringblom - Gold Rush 1 John Ahlin - Life Of A Jet Set 2 Gavin Luke - Building Tension 1 Photos: © Velo Collection (TDW) / Getty Images & © Bettiniphoto /