Tour of Flanders 2022 - women: The Route
Sunday 3 April – Hills, cobbles, and - for the first time in three years - massive crowds of Flemish cycling fanatics to line the route. At 158.6 kilometres, the Tour of Flanders for women includes eleven hills, six cobbled sectors, and a flat finale of 13.3 kilometres.
In fact, the last 45 kilometres are the same as the men’s race. That’s the most brutal part of the race.
The first hour is easygoing before the cobbles make an entrance after 45 kilometres with two sectors in quick succession, Lippehovenstraat and Paddestraat. Another quiet section of 22 kilometres makes way for the first climb. The Wolvenberg.
The easygoing opener of De Ronde is now done and dusted. After the cobbles of Kerkgate and Jagerij the route reaches its midway marker with still 10 ‘hellingen’ in store. So, let’s start racing!
The combination of Molenberg, Marlboroughstraat, Berendries and Valkenberg within 14 kilometres is a solid way to get things going. Let’s call it the pre-finale to seperate the women from the girls. It precedes the last calm phase of almost 20 kilometres. From then on, it’s all systems go.
The Koppenberg is crested 44.6 kilometres before the finish. Every 5 kilometres or so a new hill appears with a stretch of pavé just before it, like some sort of welcome mat. In order of appearance the riders hit the Mariaborrestraat, Steenbeendries, Stationsberg and Taaienberg.
And on we go, into the finale. The riders tackle the Kruisberg/Hotond with 26 kilometres remaining to continue towards the awe-inspiring combo Oude Kwaremont/Paterberg. Both paved with cobbles, the Oude Kwaremont is a 2.2 kilometres climb at 4% and the Paterberg is 360 metres long and excessively steep. The average gradient sits at 12.9% and the toughest ramps go up at an unforgiving 20%.
After the Paterberg there are 13.3 kilometres remaining. On the flat.
Last year, Annemiek van Vleuten used the Paterberg as the launchpad for a decisive move. She left Grace Brown, Demi Vollering, Elisa Longo Borghini, Cecilie Uttrup Ludwig, Lisa Brennauer and Marta Cavalli behind to solo to victory.
Ride the route yourself? Download GPX Women’s Tour of Flanders 2022.
Other interesting reads: results and start list Tour of Flanders for women 2022.
Tour of Flanders for women 2022: route, profiles, more
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