What are 'The Monuments' in cycling?
The Spring Classic races include a set of cycling races known as ‘The Monuments’. There are 5 Monument races: Milan-San Remo, Tour of Flanders, Paris-Roubaix, Liege-Bastogne-Liege and Il Lombardia. These one-day races have a rich heritage and are the oldest, hardest and most prestigious of the Classics – certainly, every rider would love to win one of these races and will go down in the history books for doing so! They hold as much kudos as winning any of the Grand Tours – the Tour de France, Giro d’Italia and Vuelta a España, and consequently attract the highest calibre riders. They are certainly the most impressive races to watch; they are definitely a coveted win to take; each one has its own character, history, quirks and attractions.
When are the Monuments taking place this year?
20 March Milan-San Remo
4 April Tour of Flanders Includes a Women’s Race
11 April Paris-Roubaix Includes a Women’s Race
25 April Liege-Bastogne-Liege Includes a Women’s Race
9 October Il Lombardia
What is Milan-San Remo like as a race?
This weekend sees the first of the Monuments with ‘La Primavera’ (meaning Spring in Italian), otherwise known as Milan-San Remo. First raced in 1907, this is the longest race of the year being 299km long and is characterised by the brutality of riding the Capo Mele, Capo Cervo, Capo Berta, the Cipressa and the Poggio di Sanremo in the final 60km after having already ridden more than 200km. It has a long flattish beginning and, if the sprinters can make it over the lumps and bumps in the second half, will lend itself to a bunch sprint at the end. However, with the likes of Wout Van Aert (winner 2020), Matthieu van der Poel (CX World Champion), and Julian Alaphilippe (Road World Champion) in contention, all of whom having proved themselves winners so far this season, this promises to be a battle of champions. Don’t forget that our own GB rider Tom Pidcock will be there too, and having already finished on the podium this season, has the potential to spice up the attacks.
If one of these is daring enough to attack on the Poggio in the last 6km of the race, it is possible to leave those other tired legs behind and take the win.
Who will have the power, strength, and endurance to be crowned winner?
How can I watch these races?
They are largely broadcast on Eurosport and the GCN Racing Pass. Have a look and let us know what you think! Enjoy!