The Junior Team have been invited to rider the Guido Reybrouck Classic, which is a UCI 1.1 classified race. The race is on 18th March and takes place around the city of Damme, Belgium (to the NE of Bruges).
This is a men’s junior race with some pedigree. Named in honour of Guido Reybrouck, a former Belgian National Road Race Champion and Tour de France stage winner, last year’s race was won by Jacob Vaughan (2016 British Junior Road Race Champion) and Tom Pidcock (2017 Junior National, European and World Cyclocross Champion) was in 5th place.
To prepare for the event, the Junior Team and a number of U16 club members went to Belgium to race in Sint Maria Lierde. Racing on local roads, the U16s raced a 58km race and the Juniors raced 78km – both races using laps of the same 6.5km circuit. The results were good for the Juniors and they placed 9th, 14th, 33rd and 34th. On the following day, they had a training ride from Lierde to Damme to check out the route of the Guido Reybrouck Classic.
The Guido Reybrouck Classic is tough race. There will be a team of 6 riding – Sam, Louis, Nesta, Marco, Harri and Ben – and they will be supported by Bob and Bruce in a team car. The race is 131 km long and is on raced on closed roads. It comprises 2 long circuits of 48.6 km which are followed by 5 laps of a 7.6 km long circuit for the race to the finish.
There are 12 sections of cobbles or pave to negotiate plus some short, steep climbs and descents. To top it off, last year’s race had crosswinds and headwinds so all-in-all it is going to be a really hard race but will be really great experience and a high level of racing.
There is also a group of U16s who are racing the ‘Novices’ races in Damme on the Saturday and Sunday, which are 54 km and 55 km long. The Junior Team rode these last year and their success led to the invitation to race in the main event this year.
We wish the Junior Team and all the LVYCC riders who are racing the best of luck.