On Wednesday 17 April, The Brabant Arrow will conclude the traditional spring agenda of Flanders Classics 2019. After the cobblestone races, The Brabant Arrow will be the opener of the four-parter for the climbers in the group, followed by the Amstel Gold Race and the Ardennes classics. The men’s race starts in Leuven just as in previous years and ends in Overijse, with an extra local loop on the way in Beersel-Huizingen. The women, who start and finish in Gooik, can also be seen battling it out during two passages through Beersel.
Double passage over Bruine Put, Menisberg and Lotsestraat
The men’s race will kick off at 12:30 p.m. in front of the town hall of Leuven. In the 200 km circuit, the racers will be tested by 32 hills. After a flat start via Overijse and Eigenbrakel, the pack turns towards Beersel, where the Alsemberg lies waiting after 50 km.
In 2019, Flanders Classics, in cooperation with WSC Rode Sportief, is choosing to highlight the region that served as the home of The Brabant Arrow in the past. Two local rounds will be introduced in Beersel, which has traditionally made up the DNA of this competition, including passages through Dworp-Huizingen-Lot-Beersel and three hill climbs: Bruine Put, Menisberg and Lotsestraat. The pack will therefore encounter these three hills twice on the local 16.3 km round. After the double passage in Beersel, the cyclists will, via Sint-Genesius-Rode, once again head towards Overijse for the final stretch.
Flanders Classics, in cooperation with WSC Rode Sportief and Pajot Sports vzw, also chose to highlight Beersel in the women’s race. While anticipating the men’s passage, the public has the chance to watch the women at work. The Brabant Arrow for women is in its second edition. Their competition starts at 12 noon in Gooik, with a ride totalling 137 km. The women ride from Gooik to Beersel where they complete the exact same round as the male cyclists twice, including two passages over Bruine Put, Menisberg and Lotsestraat.
Unchanged final stretches in Overijse and Gooik
As in previous years, the men’s race finishes in and around Overijse. The pack reaches Overijse by way of Hertstraat (91 km from the finish line). Before the local rounds begin, the pack makes a quick climb up Lanestraat in Tombeek. The riders then set to work on the local circuit with a first passage over Holstheide, Ijskelderlaan and Schavei as well as the first of a total of four passages to the finish (70 km from the finish).
Following this is the final stretch in Overijse, which remains unchanged with three local rounds of 23.4 km and therefore also three passages along Hagaard, Hertstraat, Holstheide, Ijskelderlaan and Schavei. The finish line of the 59th edition of The Brabant Arrow awaits at the end of the fourth and final passage, where we will learn who is to be Tim Wellens’ successor.
After the passage in Beersel, with six hills, the women head back towards Gooik for the final leg. Upon entering Gooik, the cyclists are greeted with the cobblestones of Schavolliestraat for a first time, as well as a passage at the finish line. After this, the women also start their final stretch with three local rounds (56 km from the finish line). The famous cobblestones of Schavolliestraat make an appearance in every round. When the time comes for the fourth and final passage at the finish line, we will know who is to succeed the Italian, Marta Bastianelli.