Fränk Schleck opens permanent Amstel Gold cycle route
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Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Fränk Schleck opens permanent Amstel Gold cycle route

by Ben Atkins at 12:15 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Training, Preparation, and Health, Spring Classics, Amstel Gold Race
 
Signposted cycle tourist course officially unveiled by 2006 race winner

frank schleckFränk Schleck (Saxo Bank) was present at the Amstel Gold Xperience at the base of the Cauberg in Valkenburg, Netherlands to unveil the new Amstel Gold Race 365, according to wielerland.nl. The Dutch classic loops around the countryside of the Cuberg region in the south of the country, but the route itself is often too complicated to follow; this problem has now been solved with the addition of permanent signposts to show amateur riders the way to go.

“The Amstel Gold race is a wonderful race that suits me well,” said Schleck. “In 2006 I won the race and I hope I can win it again. This means you can now ride it 365 days a year; unique that this is now possible for everyone. In addition, it’s ideal that pros can now explore the course a few days before the race.”

Leo van Vliet, race rirector of the Amstel Gold Race, was also present at the ceremony and expressed his pleasure with the new route markings.

“I am extremely pleased with the Permanent signage of the Amstel Gold race,” he said."With the help of the province of Limburg and the participating municipalities, it is now possible to ride this cycling classic any day of the year. Throughout the year we receive many requests from cyclists who want to ride this beautiful route; now all cycling enthusiasts will get this opportunity.”

The marked course has no start and end point so that riders can start to follow the course at any point. The next step for the project will be to install timing loops in many of the hills that the race climbs, including the Geulhemmerberg, the Adsteeg, the Bemelerberg, the Huls and of course Cauberg itself. Riders will be able to attach a chip to their bikes and their time for each climb will be recorded, and in some cases displayed on an LED screen at the top.

The Amstel Gold is not the first classic race to permanently mark out its route in this way. The Ronde van Vlaanderen also has three permanent routes signposted around the Flemish countryside taking amateur riders around parts of the course. Like de Ronde, the Amstel Gold Race also has a cycle tourist version run on the day before the race itself, were amateurs get the chance to ride a variety of distances on the classic course.

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