Compared to previous years, there will be little change from this year parcours for the 100th edition of the Tour of Flanders to be held on April 3, 2016. The 256km Belgian monument will finish on the Minderbroedersstraat in Oudenaarde for the fifth straight year with the Oude Kwaremont to feature three times and the Paterberg twice.
"The Tour is a unique Flemish folk festival. A race that resonates far beyond our borders. A monument on the international cycling calendar. We note that the riders have got an increasingly better feeling of the new route of the Tour of Flanders," said race director Wim Van Herreweghe. "Our Belgian top riders like Boonen, Gilbert, Van Avermaet and Vanmarcke are already dreaming of winning the 100th Ronde. But they will have to consider youngsters like Tiesj Benoot and foreign riders like Sagan, Cancellara and Degenkolb."
The peloton will roll out of the Grote Markt in Bruges, before passing though Torhout and Roeselaere on the way to Tielt. Gone in 2016 is the 'Dorp van de Ronde' which featured in the race each year since 2000 with Marcel Kint and Zwevegem honoured this year. The race organisers has decided to honour Briek Schotte and Roger Decock, the oldest living winner of Flanders, by passing through Kanegem and Aarsele respectively. The race then heads to the Flemish Ardennes with 18 climbs and seven cobblestone sectors awaiting the peloton including the Jagerij cobbles which replaces the Holleweg.
"In recent years, the course has made ??for a captivating race. In the last 150 kilometers there was a maximum of 12 kilometers between the cobblestones and hellingen and that makes it difficult to control the race," Van Herreweghe added. "The attacking spirit of Jurgen Roelandts, Greg Van Avermaet, Stijn Vandenbergh, Niki Terpstra and Alexander Kristoff was rewarded in the past editions. It always produced a stunning finale and an impressive podium. Flanders Classics continues along the same path. The rhythm of the last 150 kilometers is the same as in 2015."
The Koppenberg features just once in the 100th edition of the race with five more climbs for the riders before they arrive at the finish line. The Steenbeekdries arrives with 39km to race, the Taaienberg with 37km, the Kruisberg with 27km, followed by the Oude Kwaremont with the 17km and finally Paterberg with 13km to race.
Katusha's Alexander Kristoff made the race winning move this year when he and Niki Terpstra (Etixx-QuickStep) jumped away from the peloton on the Kruisberg.
2016 will be the final Tour of Flanders for three-time winner Fabian Cancellara who will retire at the end of the season.
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