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On Tap – An Easter In Flanders

The Ronde

While other races include “Ronde” in its title, the Ronde van Vlaanderen is truly the only race that people reference by this lone moniker. One of the five Monuments of Cycling, the cobbled Flandarian Classic will take place this Easter Sunday.

The 99th edition of the men’s race will be devoid of two of its greatest champions in Tom Boonen (Etixx – Quick-Step) and Fabian Cancellara (Trek Factory Racing) due to injury, which means that the annual run through Flanders is going to be wide open.

The women’s race, now in its 12th year, features an extremely strong field highlighted by defending champion Ellen Van Dijk (Boels Dolmans Cycling Team) and Annemiek van Vleuten (Bigla Pro Cycling Team), who won the race in 2011.

Other notables include Wiggle Honda’s Giorgia Bronzini, Jolien D’hoore, Chloe Hosking, and Elisa Longo Borghini, Boels Dolmans’ Lizzie Armitstead, the current UCI Women’s World Cup leader, Megan Guarnier and Chantal Blaak, Team Hi-Tec Products’ Kirsten Wild, and Rabo-Liv’s Pauline Ferrand Prévot and Anna van der Breggen.

TWENTY16 presented by Sho-Air is the lone American-based team at the Ronde. Headed up by USA National Team stalwarts Carmen Small and Lauren Hall, TWENTY16 presented by Sho-Air will be directed by veteran Ina Yoko-Teutenberg, who won the race in 2009, and Jack Seehafer.

“I have so much respect for the Tour of Flanders – the course is one of the hardest we race on all year, the cobbled sections are legendary and the field always has the best in the world represented,” commented Lauren Hall. ” Fans of cycling all over the world know this race and it’s winners. Racing with my US based trade team, TWENTY16 presented by Sho-Air, shows the commitment and dedication by our sponsors to get their athletes to these important races. I’m looking forward to race with an experienced group of girls and we expect to have a good result.”

Carmen Small was equally elated to be taking on the 145 kilometer cobbled Classic. “Flanders is my favorite spring Classic. The crowds are amazing and that brings racing to a different level. Every team brings their A-game so it makes for one of the hardest races we will do all season. Racing Flanders with TWENTY16 presented by Sho-Air is such a treat and tops it off for me. We will bring our A-game as well and hopefully come out successful!”

For more information, visit the race’s official website.

Stateside

In the United States, the first race on the USA Cycling National Racing Calendar (NRC), the Redlands Bicycle Classic, starts on April 8th and runs through the 12th. Started in 1985, Redlands has earned its place as a race “where legends are born.”

Check the list below for other upcoming races, training rides, and fun rides in your area.

04/04/2015 – UCSB Sisquoc Road Race – Sisquoc, CA
04/04/2015 – Copperopolis Road Race – Milton, CA
04/04/2015 – Alderman Cappleman’s Lincoln Park Criterium – Chicago, IL
04/04/2015 – 19th Annual Marian Midwest Cycling Classic – Indianapolis, IN
04/04/2015 – Morgantown Road Race – Mount Morris, PA
04/04/2015 – Big House Break Out Road Race – Lancaster, OH
04/04/2015 – 2015 Philadelphia Navy Yard Criterium – Philadelphia, PA
04/04/2015 – The Big Crit – West Valley City, UT
04/05/2015 – Easter Sunday GP Race #4 – Ontario, CA
04/05/2015 – Island View Classic Criterium – Goleta, CA
04/06/2015 to 04/10/2015 – Resiliant Warrior – Sanger, CA
04/06/2015 to 04/09/2015 – Half Acre Cycling – Chicago, IL
04/07/2015 to 10/27/2015 – Glory Hole Road Time Trials – Angels Camp,
04/07/2015 to 04/28/2015 – xXx Racing-AthletiCo Sprint Clinic (Members Only) – Chicago, IL
04/07/2015 to 09/08/2015 – RMR/Salt Aire-Utah Criterium Series – Salt Lake City, UT
04/08/2015 to 08/12/2015 – xXx Racing-AthletiCo Time Trial Series (Members Only) – Chicago, IL
04/08/2015 to 04/12/2015 – Redlands Bicycle Classic – Redlands, CA
04/08/2015 to 09/02/2015 – DLD Crit – West Valley, UT
04/09/2015 to 06/04/2015 – USA Cycling BRP presented by Rock N’ Road – Irvine, CA
04/09/2015 to 09/10/2015 – RMR/Salt Aire/Emigration-Utah Hill Climb Series – Salt Lake City, UT
04/10/2015 to 04/10/2015 – El Tour Criterium State Championships Day 1 – Mesa, AZ
04/11/2015 to 04/11/2015 – Two-wheel Jones Crit Experience Fun Challenge – Mesa, AZ
04/11/2015 to 04/12/2015 – Topsport Stage Race – Copperopolis, CA
04/11/2015 – Chicago Women’s Elite Cycling Development Clinic Series No. 2 – South Beloit, IL
04/11/2015 – Spring Super Criterium – South Beloit, IL
04/11/2015 to 04/12/2015 – Purdue Cycling Road Race & TTT – West Lafayette, IN
04/11/2015 – Eagle Creek Park Cycling Grand Prix – Indianapolis, IN
04/11/2015 – Novant Health Invitational Criterium – Charlotte, NC
04/11/2015 – Dilworth Criterium – Charlotte, NC
04/11/2015 – Pedaling for Hope – Burlington
04/11/2015 – Farmersville Road Race – Brownstown
04/11/2015 – Greene County Road Race – Waynesburg
04/11/2015 to 04/12/2015 – Mesquite Stage Race – St George, UT
04/12/2015 – El Tour Criterium State Championship Day 2 – Mesa, AZ
04/12/2015 – Redlands Bicycle Classic Criteriums – Redlands, CA
04/12/2015 – Together We Ride – Homer, IL
04/12/2015 to 04/26/2015 – Peoria Bicycle Club Spring Clinic – East Peoria, IL
04/12/2015 – Todd Stadium Crit – Newport News, VA
04/12/2015 – Belmont Criterium – Belmont, NC
04/12/2015 – OSRS #3-Zanesfield-P/B Team SixOneFour – Zanesfield, OH
04/12/2015 – Erie Spring Training Series – Fairview, OH
04/12/2015 – Mountaineer Classic – Fairchance, PA
04/12/2015 to 04/19/2015 – Great Dane Velo Club Spring Crits – Madison, WI

04/18/2015 to 04/19/2015 – 2015 USA Cycling Professional Criterium & Team Time Trial National Championships – Greenville, SC

Lenny B
Leonard Basobas - Among my many and varied interests are cycling and writing. I am deeply passionate about both. Strangely enough, neither has come very easy to me.I had such a horrible crash as a small child that I did not attempt to ride again until the 6th grade. From that point forward, you could say that I have had a love affair with two-wheels. When I was not out on my bike, I could be found tearing apart or putting back together other bikes. The frames and parts found in my parents’ basement today are a testament to that fact. Around the same time that I began riding again, a young rider named Greg Lemond had just won the U23 World Championships. Following his career was my entry point into the sport of cycling, but I never participated in organized racing until I was past my cycling prime. Today, a healthy curiosity about racing has me lining up on the road and in the nearest velodrome.In regard to writing, I am not a trained journalist. My writing, instead, strikes a creative bent in the form of short stories, at least when I not writing for my day job in clinical research. Although I have yet to be published for my creative writing, I have authored several abstracts and papers, and been published as the lead author for a paper in a well-known peer reviewed medical journal.I have covered the sport of cycling, as both writer and photographer, at such races as the Amgen Tour of California (2008 to 2014) and the US Pro Cycling Challenge. I was also the featured Guest Contributor for LIVESTRONG.com, commentating and moderating the site's live blogging feed during the 2009 Tour de France.