Amstel Gold Race 2015: Favourites

AGR Favourite Alejandro ValverdeAmstel Gold Race is a hilly spring classic following in the footsteps of the cobbles of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix. The hills is the southern part of the Netherlands will see a completely different peloton with totally different favourites. Cyclingstage.com brings you the main contenders. (Slideshow route/profile)

Alejandro Valverde
The ‘Unbeatable’ is still a force to be reckoned with, a fact he outlined in the Volta a Catalonya by winning three stages. He is one of the rare cyclists both strong in stage-races and classics. He finished third in Strade Bianche, while last year season he won both Flèche Wallonne and Clásica de San Sebastián. His best performance in Amstel was third in 2013.

Philippe Gilbert
Title-holder and in love with the area. He took Amstel in 2010 and 2011 and went on to become World Champion on a similar route in 2012. No wins as of yet in 2015, which should come as no surprise since he aims at ‘his’ races – Amstel, Flèche Wallonne and Liège-Bastogne-Liège.

Daniel Martin
Winner of the Tour of Lombardy and former winner of Liège-Bastogne-Liège, Amstel Gold Race is definitely one of those races he should be good at. Attacking in the deep finale and keeping of the chasers, voila, the recipe for the 28-year old Irishman.

Michal Kwiatkowski
Twice top-5 in Amstel and last year he finished third in both Flèche Wallonne and Liege-Bastogne-Liege. So that’s ample proof the reigning World Champion feels at ease in the Ardennes. Will see Amstel his first big classic win?

Bauke Mollema
Home-rider and reborn after his transfer to Trek. In March he was second in the Tirreno-Adriatico, besting the likes of Contador and Nibali. Like Valverde, Mollema is a rider with a talent for both stage races and classics. Only difference being, the Dutchman never won one… until now.

Tom-Jelte Slagter
Another home-rider, Slagter has got the potential to win Amstel. The 25-year Dutchman is not in his best form as of yet, but last year he took two stages in Paris-Nice. Short steep climbs are his forte.

Simon Gerrans
Plagued by injury thus far, the Australian is back in the saddle since the Tour of the Basque Country. Let’s see if he is up for a miracle. Defending his title in Liège is probably his main aim.

Amstel Gold Race 2015: Route maps, height profiles, and more

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