Road Race Gravel & Pave Preview 2018

Off-Piste Cycling (this page was updated on September 14)
Listed below are races that I look forward to on the road race calendar of which some are well known and others not so much.

What all have in common is a touch of the ‘Roubaixesque’ about them, each event features non-tarmac sections and for me this offers races that cannot be called routine. There are kilometres of dirt tracks, pave, green roads, gravel and farm tracks in addition to tarmac – 2018 Results Here

Maybe the best race of all in 2017 was the finish of Dwars door het Hageland – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KhSxwEt0tTg&t=12s

From the past is a stage of the Giro d’Italia in 2010 held on the ‘White Roads’ in a mud-fest – Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tkjSLKuqmmg

The 2018 Giro d’Italia features the dirt road ascent of the Colle delle Finestre on Stage 19, May 25. The climb comes 70kms from the finish and the gravel section to the summit is 8kms long.

I note that the Tour de France is also up for a little pave and gravel – Stage  9 of the 2018 Tour de France Arras to Roubaix will feature over 20 kilometres of Roubaix pave on 15 July. (http://www.letour.fr/en/stage-9)

After a rest day Stage 10 Annecy / Le Grand-Bornand, the race tackles the unpaved gravel ascent of the Plateau des Glières. (http://www.letour.fr/en/stage-10)

I’m not sure about Stage 17 on July 25 as the final gravel climb maybe given a hard tarmac surface by race day.

The picture above is a screen shot from the final climb of stage 17 of the Vuelta Espana to be held on September 12 (see below for information)

Dengie Tour – the Hell of the East and dust hanged heavy in 2011

Race dates 2018
My list of races with lots of links to websites, past year video and 2018 results when the event has been held.

Many have live streaming via the internet and when possible we will preview each race at ‘Off-Piste Cycling/Fahrrad‘.

– Tar and Gravel – January 28http://gravelandtar.com – 2018 Results/Video
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E1m0CdBQvmo

– Le Samyn – February 27http://www.lesamyn.be/ – 2018 Results/Video
The mini Paris Roubaix with men’s and women’s race the same day.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GPXzVSBbf3Q
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UcNPVwaTPc8
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lwz8ZKvRgOA
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=egO9UfHwGII

– Strade Bianchii – March 3http://www.strade-bianche.it/en/ – 2018 Results/Video
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2HyxhvIYZQM
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s6eebGra4hk
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iPomEbKDpQk
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bTFsu22fG4I

– Gent Wevelgem – March 25http://www.gent-wevelgem.be/ – 2018 Results/Video
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N-BfYTst7G4&t=18s
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tLcTcMud3Pg&t=2s

– Paris Roubaix – April 8http://www.paris-roubaix.fr/us/ – 2018 Results/Video
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sTp__vtNwJo
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lzpx_qY_ZqI

– Tro Bro Léon – April 15https://www.trobroleon.com/ – 2018 Results/Video
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r0vDisdXpqk
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G05RytK-QeU&t=26s

– GP Herning – April 21 2018http://gpherning.dk/ – 2018 Results/Video
The route includes fifteen sets of gravel tracks held in Jutland.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=3&v=vKZkgX-YTKo
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fibwYV8hq8w
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SldiQbW413c

– Rutland – Melton International CiCLE Classic – April 22 – http://cicleclassic.co.uk/ – 2018 Results/Video
Video – https://youtu.be/qFfzR9lwcrY
Video – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f6Hn6CIPUVc
Video – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YuYSJWxhK1Q
Video – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aY_vWAcqHYQ

– GP Himmerland Rundt 2018 – April 28http://www.gphimmerlandrundt.dk/index.php/da/ – 2018 Results/Video
Ten dirt roads to be traversed in Jutland, Denmark.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_H1PmP1elL0
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9KYfuFtJBDI

– Tour of Battenkill – April 28http://tourofthebattenkill.com/
Not an UCI ranked race, it used to be but not now.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c4LlUjuuK98&t=53s

– Giro d’Italia – May 25 – Stage 19http://www.giroditalia.it/eng/stage/stage-19-2018/ – 2018 Results/Video
The climb of the Colle delle Finestre comes 70 kilometres before the stage finish but the last eight kilometres of this infamous climb is on gravel. It is also the Cima Coppi highlighting that it is the highest point of the Giro.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D1VhH_66ClM
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aHJBb2nqyNg
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XfCS5E7oVfs

– 3rd Women’s CiCLE Classic – June 3 – http://www.cicleclassic.co.uk/ – 2018 Results/Video
The 3rd Women’s edition of the popular International CiCLE Classic and a round of the HSBC British Championship Series. Held over the same dirt tracks as the men in April.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ew-CZeXvfik
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jLzzqRWThbM

– Dwars Door Het Hageland  – June 15http://www.dwarsdoorhethageland.be/ – 2018 Results/Video
Final K’s – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KhSxwEt0tTg&t=12s
Full race – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QYaEoHiXTAM

– Tour de France – July 15 – Stage  920 kilometres of Roubaix pave – 2018 Results/Video
20 kilometres of Roubaix pave (see also Paris Roubaix elsewhere on this page).
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CCQ_K1GMLPs
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5GXL8hVXmeY
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p0ewL8iuQG8

You can also take a look at Paris Roubaix Rad Rennen – Media Wars.

– Tour de France – July 17 – Stage  10Gravel ascent of the Plateau des Glières – 2018 Results/Video
The ascent of the Plateau des Glières featured on stage 5 of Le Tour de Savoie Mont Blanc and comes mid-stage on this first mountain stage of the Tour.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1EO7mN1QMoo (annoying music)
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0sC8Nlwnyro
Video: https://www.facebook.com/tourdesavoiemontblanc/…

– Slag om Norg- August 11http://slagomnorg.nl/ – 2018 Results Here
Highlights – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=plNCRVAzdKY
Highlights – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PXKPPsJLSb0&t=6s
Video –  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hQyEZTw__fE&t=108s

– The Great War Remembrance Race – August 24 – https://www.greatwarremembrancerace.be/en/race – 2018 Results Here
The first edition of the Great War Remembrance Race is to be held on August 24 and the race route follows the bitter World War One fighting line in Flanders – the Kemmelberg and Messine Ridge heights overlook the town of Ypres and the Ypres Salient. In the lowlands you will find hundreds of military cemeteries some with just a handful of men buried where they died and others containing thousands.

The 2017 edition of Gent Wevelgem, which is based upon the same area introduced three ‘dirt’ sections – ploegsteerts or ‘plug streets’, the latter pointing out the inability of British soldiers to grasp hold of Flemish nuances in WW1. These ‘Plug’ Streets will also feature in the Great War Remembrance Race.

Race website: https://www.greatwarremembrancerace.be/en/race
Plug streets: http://www.ww1battlefields.co.uk/flanders/plugstreet/
Riding the Kemmelberg – https://veloklubhaus.com/2018/03/12/riding-the-kemmelberg/
Buried in Germany – https://veloklubhaus.com/2018/03/16/gottingen-stadtfriedhof-abandonment/

Video from Gent Wevelgem 2018

Elite Men
The finish – https://www.facebook.com/gentwevelgem/videos/1924654507566556/
Kemmelberg 2nd time – https://www.facebook.com/gentwevelgem/videos/1924572387574768/
Christmas Truce Plug St – https://www.facebook.com/gentwevelgem/videos/1924551087576898/
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ULkTN_MWu9k

Elite Women
Video: https://www.facebook.com/gentwevelgem/videos/1922266887805318/
Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5R4njDD4hPY

– Schaal Sels Merksem – August 26http://www.schaalsels.be/ – 2018 Results Here
The race is held near Antwerp at Merksem in Belgium and as part of a 2018 reorganisation the race was spilt apart with Schaal Sels being held over a shorter circuit. This it is hoped will show off the Stroboerenmarkt (Strawberry Market) and the local town attractions (Merksem and Bredabaan).

Whilst the dust, dirt and cobbles and general ethos of the Schaal Sels can now be seen in ‘Antwerp Port Epic’ to be held on September 2.

– Antwerp Port Epic – September 2 – http://www.schaalsels.be/  2018 Results Here
In 2018 Schaal Sels was reorganised and is now held over a shorter circuit without the dust, dirt and cobbles.

The general ethos of the Schaal Sels can now be seen in the ‘Antwerp Port Epic’ and continues to honour the memory of Belgian cycling journalist Jacques-Charles Sels who died during the 1920 Milan-Antwerp road race.

Full Race  – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9M-H4StjEys
Dusty tracks 1 – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1qJHz-GqKzk
Dusty tracks 2  – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4wzTPaP3us4
Final/Results – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=smspa3WglhU&t=18s

Live stream info and Facebook preview.

– Vuelta Espana Stage 17 – September 12 – 2018 Results Here
A narrow concrete road rising to over 18% in gradient ends stage 17 of the 2018 Vuelta from Getxo to Balcon de Bizkai.

Some might say that a rough concrete road is not ‘Off Piste’ from the tarmac, but I beg to differ.

Video: Going down – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BD74LDt5lkQ
Video: and up – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8TDrGqwscX8

‘Roubaixesque’ – https://veloklubhaus.com/2018/03/15/roubaixesque-london-gravel-reiten/

Dengie Tour – https://veloklubhaus.com/2018/03/12/dengie-tour-of-the-marshes-the-hell-of-the-east/

Billy Joe Whenman winner in 2008 leads the 2009  race

Giro d’Italia