Three-time winner Alejandro Valverde and his Movistar team where one of several squads to recon the the final and decisive climb, the Mur de Huy, of La Fleche Wallonne ahead of the mid-week Ardennes Classic. Team Sky, Astana and Katusha were among the other WorldTour teams to head to the climb for one final hit out before the 80th edition of the 196km race.
Valverde skipped Amstel Gold Race on Sunday with the 35-year-old deciding instead to the race the Vuelta a Castilla y Leon where he took two stage wins and the overall victory. The 2006, 2014 and 2015 winner of Fleche Wallonne is back in the Ardennes and while Valverde knows how to ride the Mur more than most riders in the current peloton, he reconned the climb with teammates such as Carlos Betancur, Giovanni Visconti and Ion Izagirre.
A fourth win would make history, propelling Valverde above fellow three-time winners Marcel Kint, Eddy Merckx, Moreno Argentin and Davide Rebellin.
Team Sky's Colombian duo Sergio Henao and his cousin Sebastian were also out and about reconning the climb along with several fans trying to match their high pace. Also spotted on the Mur du Huy was 2012 champion Joaquim Rodríguez with his Katusha team while the Giant-Alpecin, IAM Cycling, Astana and Trek-Segafredo squads also hit up the steep slope. Pro-Continental teams Delko Marseille Provence KTM and Cofidis were also testing their legs ahead of race day.
Click or swipe through the gallery above to see the riders on the Mur de Huy and watch the video below for our ten riders to watch in the Ardennes.
Thank you for signing up to Cycling News. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.