Oude Kwaremont most iconic spring classic climb

The Oude Kwaremont has been chosen by the users of the myCols app as the most iconic climb of the spring classics. From the ten climbs from which myCols app users could choose via the newsletter and social media, this climb was by far the most popular. The Côte de la Redoute (Liège Bastogne Liège) finished second. Several users also mentioned the Muur van Geraadsbergen, which was not on the initial list of the ten spring climbs since the ‘Muur’ was removed from the final of the Tour of Flanders in 2012, nevertheless it is a favorite of many.”

The true Flandrien always emerges at the Oude Kwaremont”, said Marc Sergeant, sports manager of Lotto-Soudal. This climb has everything that symbolizes racing in Flanders. The wringing on life and death in the run-up, a fearsome climb on the cobblestones. Then you think you’re at the top and you have to climb a piece of false flat with your face in the wind, still over cobblestones.” 

Three times winner of the Tour of Flanders Johan Museeuw calls the Oude Kwaremont crucial in the new course that since 2012 marks the final of ‘Vlaanderens Mooiste’: In the new race course of the Tour of Flanders, the Old Kwaremont is unpredictable. It is a long, not so steep climb where a tactical game can be played. Everyone is racing there with the idea that there is another climb to follow, the Paterberg. So everyone at the Kwaremont knows that you need some energy remaining. Nevertheless, some people play all or nothing. How are you supposed to react to that?” 

Peter Sagan considers this the worst climb in Flanders. Maybe it’s also because of his negative experience in the Tour of Flanders in 2017 when he fell because he got caught in a jacket that hung over a fence. “When you’re at the top of the village, you think you’re there,” Sagan said. But then there’s a difficult part that’s less steep, but the wind always has a grip on you. For a kilometer you ride uphill on the cobblestones between the meadows. There doesn’t seem to be an end to the climb.” 

Sep Vanmarcke lives about ten kilometres from the Oude Kwaremont and regularly trains there: “It’s my favorite climb. Not too heavy, fairly long and cobblestones. You can use your strength well here. Of course you have to have the technique to ride over cobblestones. That is a reason why many riders hate the Oude Kwaremont. Probably that’s an advantage for me.” 

Former rider and current team leader Hendrik Redant: “The Kwaremont is always a crucial indicator of value in cycling. Are you a fighter or not? Or as the Belgians say: do you have balls or not?”

Although everyone believes that the Oude Kwaremont has been in the Tour of Flanders since the beginning, this is not exactly the case. In the first editions there was indeed the Kwaremont, but it followed the route over the main national road. This route is also called the Nieuwe Kwaremont. It is only since 1973 that they cycle over the Oude Kwaremont.

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