Amstel Gold Race — Liege-Bastogne-Liege — Fleche Wallonne

Ardennes Classics Trip

April 2020

Ride the Cycling Sportive to Amstel Gold Race and Liege-Bastogne-Liege. Ride Mur de Huy.
If you are a true Cycling Enthusiast then you have to see a Classic once in your life!
Hosted by Eric de Clercq, a Belgian former professional cyclist with a passion for Spring in the north of Europe!

Amstel Gold Race, Liege-Bastogne-Liege Trip Details

Highlights
TRIP HIGHLIGHTS:
  • Ride the Amstel Gold Race cyclo-sportive and the Liege-Bastogne-Liege cyclo-sportive.
  • See last two major races of the classics season and a semi-classic:
    • Amstel Gold Race
    • Liege-Bastogne-Liege
    • Fleche Wallonne
  • Ride the famous roads with Eric de Clercq, an ex Belgian Pro
  • Visit the historic Limberg region and the Gallo-Roman Museum
  • Visit historical Huy and ride the challenging Mur de Huy
  • Experience Belgian hospitality and share the passion for all cycling things
  • Visit the Formule 1 track in Francorchamps (TBC)
  • Visit Flanders bike valley and the Ridley wind tunnel (TBC)
  • Immerse yourself in a true Cycling Culture
Details / PRICE

Dates: April 2020
Start: Brussels, Belgium
Finish: Brussels, Belgium

Group Size: 15 guests – 3 staff
Price:
 $6850AUD
Single Supplement: $900AUD

Note: All trip costs are per person, not including airfare and based on two persons per room. If travelling alone we will match you with a person to share. Alternatively, you may choose to have a room of your own by paying the single supplement.

Note: It is a requirement of Bikestyle Tours that you have Travel Insurance for your trip.

Rides
RIDE RATINGS

Our trips allow you to choose a suitable ride each day. Alternative ride options are available on most days. We use a consistent ride rating to help you choose your ride. We rate each ride on various factors; distance, total climbing, intensity and altitude. The table below is a guide to our ride rating system.

Unfortunately, we can’t forecast the weather when designing our rides, but your trip leader will advise you on any precautions. 

DistanceSHORT: less than 30km
MEDIUM: between 30km and 80km (depending on the total climbing).
LONG: more than 80 km
AscentTotal climbing (ascending) for the day, anything over 2000m is a big day
IntensitySome rides may have time constraints. Our rides vary from EASY, MODERATE to HARD.
AltitudeSome of our rides may go into alpine areas where thinner air affects your intake of oxygen.
Suitability
Spectators and Off the Bike

Racing fans are always welcome!

Social Riding and Leisure

We understand that your cycling holiday is a HOLIDAY! We understand that you don't normally ride everyday at home. Our ride routes cherry-pick the best areas.

Some training will always enhance your experience!

Experienced Riders

Your cycling holiday is all actually about the bike! Our epic and challenge ride options seek more vertical metres and longer miles.

Inclusions

Tour cost is per person twin share and includes:

  • All Transport
  • Services of experienced Tour Guides, including former Belgian pro cyclist, Eric de Clercq
  • Return transfers from Zaventem Airport
  • Accommodation in a boutique hotel (Tongeren), a quality 4 star hotel in Zaventem
  • Buffet breakfast daily
  • 3 course evening meals on 3 nights
  • VIP Lunch on 3 days
  • Mechanical assistance with your bike
  • Sightseeing as listed
  • Ride files and Bikestyle Tours itinerary
  • Bikestyle Tours cycling jersey & bibs
  • Entry to Amstel Gold and Liege-Bastogne-Liege cyclo sportif
Bike Hire

Note: All bike hire costs include 2 water bottles for you to keep. We also provide a saddle bag with a spare tube, pump, tyre-levers and multi-tool. The pump and saddle bag with its contents must be returned with the hire bike at the end of hire.

AT A GLANCE

TWIN SHARE
  • 11 Days
  • 3 Dinners, 3 VIP Lunches
  • Amstel, Fleche and Liege
  • Luxury Transport
  • High Staff Ratio
  • Intermediate to Experienced
  • 3 & 4 Star Hotels

When is the Amstel Gold Race?

Ardennes classics are raced in the weeks following the Spring Classics races. The Ardennes is a region with dense forests and rolling hills. There a a number of ridges created from erosion by the many river systems, this creates challenging cycling terrain.

You would not normally associate Holland with hilly terrain. But, the border-region between Holland, Germany and Belgium creates some of the most exciting races on the UCI World Tour calendar.

Amstel Gold Race and Liege-Bastogne-Liege are very exciting races as the earlier races in Flanders and Roubaix tire some of the riders. Driven to redeem their earlier spring classics disappointments, their tired legs come up against fresh riders that are more suited the longer climbs.

amstel gold race cycle sportive
Experience the grueling climbs of the Amstel Gold Race. Rice the Cycle Sportive.

Ride with a former professional cyclist Eric de Clercq

Eric is a native Belgian whose career spanned 11 years from 1991 to 2002, in which he had 19 victories including a stage win in the Tour of Britain. He is one of the hard men of Belgium having raced the big classics such as Tour of Flanders and Paris Roubaix. He rode with:

  • La William-Duvel from 1991-1993
  • Collstrop from 1994-2002.

Since retiring, Eric became a Director Sportif from 2004-2007 for the Vlaanderen Women’s Professional Cycling Team. It was here that Eric learnt the organisational skills that make him the a great cycling guide.

Eric has been with Bikestyle Tours for many years and runs many trips every year. Speaking three languages, you will find Eric to be a very capable guide and great to socialise with after a ride.

He still has many associations with the professional cycling teams, including looking after their VIP’s and being a team soigneur.

Former Professional Eric de Clercq winning a stage
Eric de Clercq winning a stage at Tour of Britain

Ardennes Classics Tour Itinerary

  • Welcome to the Ardennes Classics
  • Amstel​ Gold Cycle Sportif
  • Race Day Amstel Gold
  • Amstel Gold without the crowds
  • Fleche Wallonne Ride
  • Race Day Fleche Wallonne
  • Liege-Bastogne-Liege Ride
  • Flanders Bike Valley
  • Liege-Bastogne-Li
  • Race Day Liege-Bastogne-Liege
  • A Bientot from the Ardennes

Welcome to the Ardennes Classics

Friday, 17 April 2020
Tongeren, Belgium
Welcome Dinner

Your trip starts today in Brussels where we will take you to the oldest city of Belgium, Tongeren, our base for the next 6 nights where you can unpack and settle in.

Ardennes classics

Today we will collect you from Zaventem airport in Brussels at 10.30am and take you to the oldest city of Belgium, Tongeren, our base for the next 10 nights where you can unpack and settle in. There will be someone to meet you at the Airport and assist you to our vehicle.

The first job will be to assemble your bike and Bikestyle staff will be on hand if you have mechanical problems or need any other assistance for a warm up ride.

Tonight a Welcome Dinner is provided and there will be plenty of time to ask questions and meet the staff and of course, the people who you will be spending your holiday with and maybe a Belgian beer or two!

Amstel​ Gold Cycle Sportif

Saturday, 18 April 2020
Tongeren, Belgium
Breakfast, Dinner

Today we will travel over the border to Holland for your own Amstel Gold Race. You will experience what it feels like to grovel over these steep climbs. If you think Holland is flat, think again.

Today we will travel over the border to Holland for your own Amstel Gold Race. You will experience what it feels like to grovel over these steep climbs. If you think Holland is flat, think again. Over here in the Limburg, it is not flat! It’s a great day out and one of the most popular events on the cyclosportif calendar.

This is a mass participation event and always sells out within days of registrations opening. We have a limited number of places available for this event, especially for our clients.

Amstel Gold

Sunday, 19 April 2020
Tongeren, Belgium
Breakfast, Lunch

Today we will do the Amstel Gold Race again but this time as a spectator. The beautiful area with a mixture of tough climbs and small roads in such a small area makes this race special.

amstel gold race ardennes Classics

Today we will do the Amstel Gold Race again but this time as a spectator. Over the years we have organised trips for spectators during the Spring Classics and The Amstel Gold Race is our favourite. The beautiful area with a mixture of tough climbs and small roads and this in such a small area makes this race special.

The Netherlands is known for its flat country, where cyclists have all the rights on the road. Although this part of the “Low Countries” has numerous hills. Maasberg, Adsteeg, Camerig, Gulperberg, Keutenberg and Cauberg are only some of them and these names will mean nothing to you until you meet them on your ride.

Amstel Gold without the crowds

Monday, 20 April 2020
Tongeren, Belgium
Breakfast

Today we go back to the Netherlands to ride a part of the Amstel without the other 16,000 cyclists. We will start and finish our ride in Valkenburg. After our ride, we can have some lunch in one of the many restaurants in Valkenburg.

Today we go back to the Netherlands to ride a part of the Amstel and we’ll cross 3 countries in one day. We will start and finish our ride in Valkenburg. Not so often you can cross 3 borders in a day, don’t forget your ID just in case. After our ride we can have some lunch in one of the many restaurants in Valkenburg.

In the afternoon you can explore Tongeren or we can make a trip to the Henri-Chapelle American Cemetery. Here on a bluff overlooking the Belgian countryside, 7,989 of American World War II dead are buried. Most of them were killed during the Battle of the Bulge in late 1944 and during the advance into Germany in 1945. Like all American military cemeteries in Europe, Henri-Chapelle is both beautiful and sombre, with its sweeping rows of white crosses honouring those who gave their lives for their country.

Fleche Wallonne Ride

Tuesday, 21 April 2020
Tongeren, Belgium
Breakfast

Today we will ride the final circuit of Flêche Wallonne, which means that we start in Huy at the feed-zone. This 100km trip offers 7 hills and ends at the Mur of Huy (9,3 to 17 %).

Fleche Wallonne ardennes classics

The Flêche Wallonne is the little brother of Liège-Bastogne-Liège and The Amstel Gold Race, but the race and the area are just as fascinating. We will ride the final circuit of the race, which means that we start in Huy at the feed-zone. This 100km trip offers 7 hills and ends at the Mur of Huy (9,3 to 17 %).

Our support-van & driver will be there when we need him. You can ride your own tempo knowing that alongside the road you’ll get provided with soft-drinks and bars.
You’ll be the hero when you reach the top of the Mur without getting off the bike.

After our ride and lunch, we stay in Huy to see the women’s team presentation. The Flêche Wallonne for women is one of the hardest women’s world cup races on the calendar. The final is the same lap as the male pro’s!

Fleche Wallonne Race

Wednesday, 22 April 2020
Tongeren, Belgium
Breakfast, Picnic Lunch

Today we will see the first of two Belgian Ardennes classics, La Flèche Wallonne (the Walloon Arrow) is held mid-week between the Amstel Gold Race and Liège-Bastogne-Liège.

riding ardennes classics

The first of two Belgian Ardennes classics, La Flèche Wallonne (the Walloon Arrow) is held mid-week between the Amstel Gold Race and Liège-Bastogne-Liège. At one time, La Flèche Wallonne and Liège-Bastogne-Liège were run on successive days as “Le Weekend Ardennais”. The list of winners over the years include such legends as Eddy Merckx, Bernard Hinault, Francesco Moser and in 2010 Cadel Evans, the reigning world champion at the time.

After seeing the men’s start last Sunday, we are going to see the women’s start. Women’s racing is still growing but you will notice the difference between the women’s and the men’s start. After the race start, we will have a picnic lunch where you can find a spot on the famous “Mur de Huy”. During the afternoon we will see the women’s race pass and their finish as well as the men’s race passing us twice before seeing the finish.

Liege-Bastogne-Liege Ride

Thursday, 23 April 2020
Tongeren, Belgium
Breakfast

Before the pros hit the circuit for Sundays Liège-Bastogne-Liège, we will attempt some of the climbs of Liège-Bastogne-Liège.  and Côte de la Haute Levée.

riding ardennes classics

After breakfast, we’re leaving our hotel by van to Spa.

Spa is one of Belgium's main tourist cities. The town of Spa is famous for its several natural mineral springs and is also the location of mineral water producer Spa, whose mineral water is exported worldwide.

Our ride today is all day up and down on quiet countryside roads. We will tackle the famous climbs of Liege-Bastogne- Liege, Côte du Stockeu with the Eddy Merckx statue on top of the climb and Côte de la Haute Levée.

Côte du Stockeu is 2,3km long and the average grade is 9,5% with a maximum of 20%. If you like a longer climb Côte de la Haute levée will suits you better. The start of the climb is the hardest part with a max of 11%. After this, it gets a bit flatter. The total length is 3,6km with an average of 5,6%.

The professionals are not the only ones who think La Doyenne is the ultimate cycling classic and challenging experience. Cyclists will be nervous for the Liège-Bastogne-Liège Challenge too.

Once we finished our ride and lunch we’ll have a guided tour on the Belgium Formule one track in Fancorchamp. (TBC)

The circuit, which hosts the annual Belgian Grand Prix, is in the village of Fracorchamps near Spa.

The circuit is one of the most challenging race tracks in the world, mainly due to its fast, hilly and twisty nature. It’s the favourite track of many racing drivers and fans.

Riding through the water & Bike Valley.

Friday, 24 April 2020
Tongeren, Belgium
Breakfast

Tomorrow’s Liege-Bastogne-Liege Sportif will be a tough day on the bike so we offer an easy ride today to keep the legs fresh for tomorrow. We also visit the Flanders Bike Valley Ridley wind tunnel near Beringen.

t's not because we keep it easy it won't be special.

We won't cycle over or around the water, but through the water! Cycling Through Water, Limburg’s sunken cycle bridge, has made Time magazine’s Greatest Places list. The annual list includes unique and awe-inspiring sites around the world.

The cycle lane is the only place in Belgium to make the top 100. The list includes destinations in 48 countries.

Come cycling through the water in Bokrijk as you ride straight through a lake on a 3 metre wide, 212-metre long cycle path. You’ll be able to see, feel, smell and even touch the water ... without needing a wet suit.

After our ride and lunch, we’ll visit the Flanders Bike Valley Ridley wind tunnel near Beringen. (TBC)

The Flanders' Bike Valley wind tunnel is a special, independent, low-speed wind tunnel specifically developed for the bicycle industry and cyclists. The test results will contribute to optimum aerodynamics in the end products: bicycles, clothing, helmets, etc. The attitude of the athlete on the bicycle can also be tested and improved. This is very important in the time trial discipline. The wind tunnel is 50 m long and can generate wind speeds of 30 m/s (108 km/h). It's not because we keep it easy it won't be special.

We won't cycle over or around the water, but through the water! Cycling Through Water, Limburg’s sunken cycle bridge, has made Time magazine’s Greatest Places list. The annual list includes unique and awe-inspiring sites around the world.

The cycle lane is the only place in Belgium to make the top 100. The list includes destinations in 48 countries.

Come cycling through the water in Bokrijk as you ride straight through a lake on a 3 metre wide, 212-metre long cycle path. You’ll be able to see, feel, smell and even touch the water ... without needing a wet suit.

After our ride and lunch, we’ll visit the Flanders Bike Valley Ridley wind tunnel near Beringen. (TBC)

The Flanders' Bike Valley wind tunnel is a special, independent, low-speed wind tunnel specifically developed for the bicycle industry and cyclists. The test results will contribute to optimum aerodynamics in the end products: bicycles, clothing, helmets, etc. The attitude of the athlete on the bicycle can also be tested and improved. This is very important in the time trial discipline. The wind tunnel is 50 m long and can generate wind speeds of 30 m/s (108 km/h).

Liege-Bastogne-Liege Sportif

Saturday, 25 April 2020
Tongeren, Belgium
Breakfast

Today is our day to ride the Liege-Bastogne-Liege Challenge, the day before the race itself. We will offer 2 distances today 164km and 84km (TBC).

sportif ardennes classics

One day before the pros, the most audacious of cycling fans try the slopes of Liège-Bastogne-Liège themselves. More than 6,000 participants take part in the randonnée of the Ardennes classic.

Based on 2019 we expect the organisers will have official timing on slopes like the 
Côte de La Redoute: 2100m – 9,7%
Col du Maquisard: 3000m – 5,1%
Côte de St. Nicolas: 1000m – 7,6%

The professionals are not the only ones who think La Doyenne, the ultimate cycling classic, is a nail-biting experience. Amateur cyclists are nervous for the Liège-Bastogne-Liège Challenge too.
The ultimate challenge is to ride the entire course as the pros will do the day after. However, the routes of 160k and 80k will also leave you plenty of opportunities to get to know the famous climbs included La Redoute, Rosier

Liege-Bastogne-Liege Race

Sunday, 26 April 2020
Tongeren, Belgium
Breakfast, Picnic Lunch, Dinner

The start of today’s race takes place in the centre of Liege. We will see the start of the race before heading off on our own little race.

Spring Classics Cycling Trips Flanders Roubaix

The start of today’s race takes place in the centre of Liege. We will see the start of the race before heading off on our own little race. As we did during all the spring-classics, today we will test your orientation by crisscrossing through this beautiful part of Belgium to see the race. Our preparation of the route is well known by famous ex-cyclists and some of them even try to follow us. They often wonder, year after year, how we manage to reach all the spectacular places.

Shortly after the race, we will travel to our hotel in Brussels, about an hour’s drive away. Tonight is our final night together so we will celebrate with a farewell dinner to celebrate our time at the Spring Classics.

A Bientot from the Ardennes

Monday, 27 April 2020
N/A
Breakfast

Sadly our trip ends this morning after breakfast at our hotel. We hope you have enjoyed your week at the Ardennes Classics with us.

guests riding tour de france

A free shuttle bus is available between our hotel and Brussels airport, so you can depart at your leisure at any time during the day. Please note that check out time from the hotel will be late morning. If you require a later checkout please ask at the hotel reception for details on availability.

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