Formed in June 09, Here Come the Belgians is a non-elite anti-team celebrating all things cross, cobbled and Belgian.
Seeking a different experience to the traditional cycling club, its aim is to harness the energy of a vibrant internet cycling community with grass roots racing and riding based around Cyclocross and Spring Classics. There is no race programme in the style of a racing team, more a collection of individual experiences through rides and racing, in whatever location a member may be, that all can share in and contribute toward.

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

RvV voor wielertoeristen 2011...

Riding my first Tourist RVV was an amazing experience. The number of riders, the organisation, road closures, police care, motorbike outriders and feed stop provision is phenomenal. All this to allow us to experience a small part of pro's world. If you were thinking about doing it...go. You'll be glad you did, it's mind blowing.

The actual mechanics of riding were joyous. Temperatures around 25˚C, a light breeze on the flats, dry cobble and most of the Hellingen rideable even if busy. The Koppenberg played it's hand as a bus stop and had us all grinding to a halt , shoulder to shoulder, to gently walk to the top. Even so many pro's have had the same experience and it gives you a tingle to think this (Paul & Bruno managed to ride it arriving later in the day, a fantastic experience).

The cobble is something else, giving it full gas across the flat stretches is adrenalin x 10. Loved it. Smashing it up the Muur gave me a serious bout of giddiness. If only I'd dropped it on the big ring..ah, next time maybe.

The only thing that did give me some consternation was the ever increasing temperature and my rapidly decreasing water. I was nearly out when the final feed stop came into view. It's timing couldn't have been better. The slices of fresh orange where the best tasting I've ever had...and the waffle...and the honey waffle.

Suitably restocked and calmed, knowing I had enough liquids, dispatching the last few hills was a joy. Crossing the finish line was strangely eerie considering the greats that have passed under the golden arch. The last few miles back to the van were spent smiling insanely and I still am. I just can't stop.

A final thanks to my traveling companions/care providers. Paul, Bruno, Rob, Rich, many thanks for putting up with me and allowing me to practise long forgotten social skills. Paul, thanks for instigating my adventure and Bruno, many thanks for your hospitality and great respect to your ride (260km with just a few km in your legs deserves it).

RVV 260km... See you some time soon.


  1. Was, and still is the best day I've had on a bike. Period.

    Am slightly worried that you didn't have an authentic experience though - 25 degrees isn't really right. We had 5 degreees, cloud, rain for 4 hours, sleet, hail and even snow at one point. Then the sun came out for a Fabian style blast off the Muur and onto the Bosberg and home.

    I'm up for 260km next year, and I'm owed a pass out too...

  2. Now on my to do list
    great shot of the Belgians cresting the climb