The penultimate event on French soil before the Paris-Nice is the Classic de l’Ardèche 2018. This competition, which is traditionally held on one-day basis, trods the roads of the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region and manoeuvres through an area which has an intense concentration of wineyards. On the occasion of the eighteenth edition of the race, categorized 1.1 by the UCI, the organization called twenty-two teams to participate, 5 of which are World Teams. The start list is replenished by the participation of 13 Professional teams and 4 Continental ones. The entire podium of the 2017 edition is taking part to this race: the challenge for the former first-three finishers is to repeat last year’s performance.
Start time: 11.20
Expected finish time: 16.10 – 16.45
Official Hashtag: #BDA18
Classic de l’Ardèche 2018 Gold Book
2017 FINETTO Mauro
2016 VAKOC Petr
2015 SEPULVEDA Eduardo
2014 VACHON Florian
2013 DRUJON Mathieu
2012 PAURIOL Remi
2011 VICHOT Arthur
2010 RIBLON Christophe
2009 BICHOT Freddy
2008 SMUKULIS Gatis
Classic de l’Ardeche Favourites
This race’s course is in favour of those riders who can rank over steep and brief climbs but it’s open to whoever has enough legs to overtake the specialists. World Teams line-up prestigious names at the start of Guilherand-Granges. Ag2r La Mondiale’s leader Romain Bardet will participate and lieutenants Alexis Vuillermoz and Pierre Latour are ready to surge to the fore. Also FDJ deploys an interesting trio made of David Gaudu, Sebastian Reichenbach and Arthur Vichot, the last of these who has already won this competition. Quick Step Floors and Trek-Segafredo are bringing in France two of those who have demonstrated their value over the last few weeks: fifth Volta ao Algarve overall Bob Jungels and the runner-up in the last up-hill Algarve finish the Portuguese Ruben Guerreiro.
Professional teams are not sitting on their hands. Direct Energie lines-up three leaders who can spring into action depending on how the race develops: Tour de Haut-Var winner Jonathan Hivert, Liliane Calmejane and Rein Taaramae. Last year’s winner Mauro Finetto will lead Delko-Provence Marseille-KTM and Mattia Cattaneo and Francesco Gavazzi will do the same with Androni-Sidermec-Bottecchia. Nicola Bagioli (Nippo-Vini Fantini-Europa Ovini) has shown to be in a great shape but also Warren Barguil and Anthony Delaplace (Fortuneo-Samsic), Mathias le Turnier (Cofidis), Stefan Denifl (Aqua Blue Sport) and Guillaume Martin (Wanty-Groupe Gobert) can have a say.
Classic de l’Ardeche 2018 Course
Without a doubt, the profile of the Classic de l’Ardèche 2018 does not fit for sprinters. With eleven categorized climbs over 200,2 kilometers of length, the course which starts and finishes in Guilherand-Granges is the ideal terrain for climbers or good rouleurs, as proved over the previous editions. The opening and the central stages of the race are characterized by three rounds of a 60 kilometers lap which includes the Saint-Romain-de-Lerps, the Col de Leyrisse and the Cote du Val d’Enfer ascents. In the last 20 kilometers, firstly the Coteaux du Cornas and again (but from a harder side of the climb) the Cote du Val d’Enfer, positioned with just over 6 kilometers remaining, will be the last harshness of the course.
Classic de l’Ardèche Profile and Planimetry