April 22, 2006 – The last of the spring classics takes place tomorrow in Belgium – the legendary LiÃ¨ge-Bastogne-LiÃ¨ge. Last year’s winner, Alex Vinokourov, is set to defend his crown on the tough course with 10 major climbs. This year, Vino rides with the strong Spanish squad, Liberty Seguros WÃ¼rth. As always, 2004 Olympic Champion and perennial Classics champion Paolo Bettini (Quick.Step) should be in the mix for the 260 km race.
Last year, Vino pipped CSC’s Jens Voight for the win, but with CSC’s run of wins this year, including the recent Paris-Roubaix, look for a favourite from the Danish team. Ivan Basso, preparing for the cols of France, is definitely suited for the race tomorrow and will lead the red and white boys on the climbs. Michael Boogerd (Rabo) after another podium at Amstel Gold, should lead the Orangemen and could once again finish in the mix.
Although no Canadians ride tomorrow, look for the Disco boys to make a strong showing after some impressive riding at the classics. Could Brit Roger Hammond have a strong ride tomorrow?
Look for photos and results tomorrow at pedalmag.com.