Last year, Julian Alaphilippe and Bauke Mollema forced a crucial selection on the short and sharp Murgil. They reached the summit together to plunge down to the line, where the Frenchman outsprinted the Dutch rider.
The first part of the 2019 route is a carbon copy of last year’s. The first climb is the Meage, which is crested at kilometre 27. The 3.5 kilometres uphill at 3.4% is perfect to stretch the legs before the route continues to the Alto Iturburu. The 6.6 kilometres climb at 5.3% leads to the highest point of the Clásica de San Sebastián at an elevation of merely 550 metres. Which is typical for the Basque Country – tough ascents at moderate altitude. Next up is the Alkiza, a 4.4 kilometres climb at 6.2% with its summit at kilometre 78.9.
A calm phase in the race precedes the Alto de Jaizkibel. The 6.9 kilometres long climb at 6.2% is a regular on the Clásica de San Sebastián. The first 3 kilometres are steepest before the climb flattens out towards the top.
And on it goes. Approximately 10 kilometres after the descent of the Jaizkibel the riders tackle the 13 kilometres long Erlaitz. The first and last part and nothing special, but the heart of the ascent is something else entirely: 3.8 kilometres at 10.6%.
The riders descend into San Sebastián for the first passage on the line with 40 kilometres remaining. Still two ascents to go, both with insane gradients. First the Mendizorrotz. The two hardest kilometre slope at 11.3% before the climbs continues on a section of 2 kilometres at 4.5%.
Probably, the Clásica de San Sebastián comes down to the steep ramps of the Murgil’s climb. As it did since the wall-like obstacle was included in 2014. The Murgil Tontorra, as the Basks say, has an average slope of 10.1% and the length is 2.1 kilometres. The steepest ramps of the Clásica de San Sebastián’s last climb are 22%.
Only 7.3 kilometres remaining at the top. First a false flat and then a technical descent into San Sebastián before the last 3 kilometres are played out on the wide and flat boulevards along the coast.
Another interesting read: results/race report 2019 Clásica de San Sebastián.
Clásica de San Sebastián: routes, profiles, more
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