Adam Yates looking for his first podium in the Ardennes ClassicsMon 22 Apr 2019
Recent Pais Vasco stage winner Adam Yates will return to the La Flèche Wallonne this week looking for a good result up the Mur de Huy, having missed the race the last two-years.
With a strong team stacked with experience and climbing talent, with the likes of Michael Albasini who has featured in the top ten on five occasions, two of them podium placing, Mitchelton-SCOTT are feeling confident to deliver a good result on Wednesday in the challenging mid-week Classic.
Within the 195km race there’s 11 climbs to tackle including three brutal ascents of the famous Mur de Huy, a 1.3kilometre climb with an average gradient of 9.3% and a brutal maximum gradient of 26%.
The race begins in Ans and heads to Huy where the riders complete 137km before their first time up the much anticipated Mur de Huy. Two laps of a 29km circuit follow and feature three climbs each lap, the Cote d’Ereffe, the Cote de Cherave and the leg breaking Mur de Huy again, with the finish line at the very top of the climb, which quickly displays who has the legs on the day.
The team has never yet clinched a victory in the race but has been close before with a second place finish in 2012 and a third place finish in 2015 from Albasini, plus six top-ten finishes throughout the team’s seven-year existence.
"I’m in good condition but I’ve never quite mastered the Ardennes races. The terrain suits me generally and Flèche is a bit harder than usual which should suit me more.
"I am nearing the end of a big block of racing which I am pleased about, with a few wins along the way, so my confidence is quite high but we will have to see how things go on Wednesday."
“I am really looking forward to Flèche. I’ve heard it’s a super taxing race and I’m excited to discover it for myself. I expect it to be super hard but I hope I’m capable of doing a job for the leaders.
“I’m confident that those experienced guys can deliver a result. They have before, and they all seem to be on very fine form. It’s very motivating to start such a big race with guys like that knowing they can deliver a great ride.”
Matt White - Head Sport Director
“We have some fresh riders coming in for Flèche Wallonne, notably Adam Yates. The race has one extra lap this year, so one more time up the Mur de Huy which makes it even harder.
"It is a really important race for us and I think we have a great chance with the riders we have.”
La Flèche Wallonne Race Details:
Wednesday, 24th April: Ans to Mur de Huy, 195km
Photo courtesy of Getty Images