This Friday, the Flemish Ardennes will be the battleground for the 65th edition of E3 Harelbeke (1.UWT, 25/03), a demanding classic in which Taco van der Hoorn shined as part of the breakaway last year. On a 203.9 kilometer circuit designed around Harelbeke, the peloton will encounter no less than sixteen listed climbs and eleven cobbled sections.
The first difficulty, the Katteberg, stands in their way after 30 kilometers, while that of the Tiegemberg closes the show 20 kilometers from the finish. The classic climbs in particular obstacles familiar to fans of the Tour of Flanders, such as the Paterberg-Vieux Kwaremont sequence, the Kanarieberg, or the Taaienberg.
The selection of seven riders will notably rely on Andrea Pasqualon, eighth in the Circuit Het Nieuwsblad, the Frenchman Adrien Petit, 3rd in the GP Denain or the Hungarian Barnabás Peák, second in the Tour of Drenthe. At their side, the Eritrean Biniam Girmay well as the Belgians Aimé De Gendt and Kévin Van Melsen continue after the classic of Brugge-De Panne disputed this Wednesday. Frenchman Hugo Page, who will take part in his first World Tour event, completes the selection.