Pogacar Wins Liege-Bastogne-Liege 2024

News & Results

04/21/2024| 0 comments
by Roadcycling.com
Tadej Pogacar Romain Bardet and Mathieu van der Poel on the Liege-Bastogne-Liege podium
Tadej Pogacar, Romain Bardet ad Mathieu van der Poel on the podium of Liege-Bastogne-Liege 2024 A.S.O.

Pogacar Wins Liege-Bastogne-Liege 2024

Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) has won Liege-Bastogne-Liege 2024. Pogacar climbed to victory in the Spring Classic ahead of Romain Bardet (DSM-Firmenich) and Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Deceuninck)

Liege-Bastogne-Liege 2024 was contested in cloudy and chilly Spring weather conditions. The 254.5-kilometer race from Liege to Bastogne and back featured eleven climbs before culminating on the climb to the finish line in Liege. The route included the legendary Cote the la Redoute (1.6 km; 8.8 incline percentage), where previous editions have often been decided, and the Cote de la Roche aux Faucons (1.3 km; 10.1%).

Previous winners of Liege-Bastogne-Liege include Remco Evenepoel, Tadej Pogacar, Primoz Roglic, Alejandro Valverde, Tyler Hamilton, Paolo Bettini, Michele Bartoli, Rolf Sørensen, Moreno Argentin, Sean Kelly, Bernard Hinault, Eddy Merckx, Jacques Anquetil, and Roger de Vlaeminck.

Favorites for the victory in the 2024 edition of Liege-Bastogne-Liege included Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates), Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Deceuninck), Thomas Pidcock (Ineos-Grenadiers), Jai Hindley (Bora-Hansgrohe), Tiesj Benoot (Team Visma-Lease a Bike), Michael Matthews (Jayco-Alula), Ben Healy (EF Education-EasyPost), Mattias Skjelmose (Lidl-Trek), Richard Carapaz (EF Education-EasyPost), and Benoit Cosnefroy (Decathlon AG2R).

The Remy Rochas (Groupama-FDJ), Lilian Calmejane (Intermarche-Wanty), Gil Gelders (Soudal-QuickStep) and Paul Ourselin (TotalEnergies) lauched the first successful attack after just three kilometers of active racing. They were joined Enzo Leijnse (Team DSM-Firmenich), Christian Scaroni (Astana), Ivan Romeo (Movistar Team), Fabien Doubey (TotalEnergies), and Loic Vliegen (Bingoal-WB).

The front group built a lead of almost five minutes before the main peloton, headed by UAE Team Emirates, started reeling them in. With 100 kilometers left of the last Spring Classic of this season, their advantage had been reduced to approximately 01:30 minutes.

The speed at the front of the main peloton was intense and all major teams were working to position their riders optimally for the decisive phase of the race. Nine of the eleven climbs of the race were to be contested in the final one hundred kilometers.

With 97 kilometers left a major crash brought down several riders and many riders were held back. Bottles and wheels were everywhere, and things looked chaotic. 

88 kilometers from the finish line in Liege the front group was reeled in by the chasing main peloton.

A new front group established itself. The group featured approximately 40-50 riders. 

Thomas Pidcock (Ineos-Grenadiers) launched an attack from the chase group on the Cote de Stockeu (1 km; 12.7%) with 79 kilometers left. He was joined by Mauri Vansevenant (Soudal-QuickStep). Meanwhile, World Champion Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Deceuninck) was chasing ten seconds behind.

With 75 kilometers left, Pidcock and Vansevenant had been joined by Romain Gregoire (Groupama-FDJ) and Remy Rochas (Groupama-FDJ), who still had energy left despite his dominant performance in the early breakaway of the day. Many favorites were now chasing twenty seconds behind the chase group.

After approximately thirty kilometers of intense action and breakaways, the groups remerged. Seventy kilometers of this year’s Liege-Bastogne-Liege remained. UAE Team Emirates moved to the front to try to control the action.

Carlos Canal Blanco (Movistar Team) crashed heavily with seventy kilometers left. Ambulance assistance was needed.

Riders from UAE Team Emirates were still setting the pace and controlling the action at the front of the peloton with fifty kilometers remaining. It appeared spectators had an exciting race climax phase to look forward to. Søren Kragh Andersen moved to the front for Alpecin-Deceuninck, but UAE Team Emirates wanted a faster pace. The peloton was approaching the next short, but intensive climb of the day – the Cote de Desnie.

AG2R Decathlon joined the front to control the race in support of their team leader Benoit Cosnefroy.

Next up was the legendary Cote de la Redoute (1.6 km; 8.8%). Attacks were expected from riders such as Tadej Pogacar and Mattias Skjelmose.

The riders entered the Cote de la Redoute. Ben Healy moved to the front for EF Education-EasyPost together with teammate Richard Carapaz. UAE Team Emirates fought hard to recapture the lead position. Tadej Pogacar attacked with 34.8 km left. Carapaz closed the gap to Pogacar. But after a while Carapaz was unable to stay with Pogacar. Pogacar was now solo and was first across the top. He had a fifteen second advantage.

Pogacar increased his lead to 25 seconds. Chasing riders included Mauri Vansevenant, Egan Bernal (Ineos-Grenadiers), Pello Bilbao (Bahrain Victorious), Carapaz, Healy, Gregoire, Benoot, Skjelmose, Mathieu van der Poel, Joao Almeida (UAE Team Emirates), Marc Hirschi (UAE Team Emirates), Maxim van Gils (Lotto Dstny), Romain Bardet (DSM-Firmenich), Cosnefroy, Aurelien Paret-Peintre (Decathlon AG2R).

Healy and Bardet launched a counterattack. They formed a fifteen second lead over the chasers. Pogacar was still in front – now with a fifty second advantage.

Cosnefroy and Gregoire joined Healy and Bardet. They were 01:10 minutes behind Pogacar and 20 seconds ahead of the chasers. It had started raining, but the riders had no time to put on rain jackets in the decisive race phase.

Pogacar was still solo with fifteen kilometers remaining. His lead was now 01:20 minutes. He was on his way to an admirable victory in the final Spring Classic of the 2024 pro cycling season. Pogacar was having more luck in this year’s race than in last year’s where he crashed and fractured his wrist.

Bardet launched a solo attack 13 kilometers from the finish. The other three riders in the group were unable to keep up, but Healy did all the hard work to try to limit the loss. Meanwhile, other riders bridged the gap to the Healy group.

Pogacar was approaching the finish line solo. He had 3.5 kilometers left and was crusing at a speed of 65 km/h.

Pogacar entered climb to the finish line. Spectators were clapping their hands and shouting in support of the rider and his remarkable performance. 

Pogacar crossed the finish line in solo fashion as winner of Liege-Bastogne-Liege 2024. It was his second victory in the Liege-Bastogne-Liege classic.

Bardet was next to approach the finish. He too was solo when he entered the final climbing meters to the finish. Bardet crossed the finish line second. What an encouraging performance for Bardet following multiple disappointing seasons for the Frenchman.

A bunch sprint decided the final podium spot. Mathieu van der Poel proved the fastest man and claimed the final podium spot.

“It was a miserable day from the start, but we kept pushing with the team,” race winner Tadej Pogacar told Roadcycling.com shortly after the finish. 

“It was quite an emotional day for me today. Last year when I broke my hand in this race and because of the year before. I was riding for my girlfriend Kushka’s mother today.”

”Amazing teamwork today and I couldn’t have done it without them. I am full of emotions,” Pogacar explained. “Today I stayed more on the safe side and I had more layers on to stay warm. We rode hard on the climbs and safe on the downhills and after my attack it was: Suffer until the finish. It was super special to arrive solo in the national champion jersey.”

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