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Gent-Wevelgem to include Ypres for five years

The Gent-Wevelgem peloton rolls along the seaside.

The Gent-Wevelgem peloton rolls along the seaside. (Image credit:

Gent-Wevelgem will go through Ypres the next five years, and the women's version of the race will start there, race organizers announced. The route change will be in honor of the centennial of World War I.

After the traditional climbs of the Rodeberg and Kemmelberg, the race will not head directly to Wevelgem, but will go first to Ypres.  “That will be for the next five editions,” Bernard Langedock, of Hez Vliegen Wiel (“the flying wheel”), which organizes the race, told Het Nieuwsblad.

The peloton will enter Ypres through the Lille Gate and cross the Grand Place and Menenstraat, leaving the city through the Menenpoort.

Ypres, in far western Belgium, was the scene of intense and sustained battles during the first World War, with about a half million casualties on both sides.