On Sunday April 7th, the 103rd edition of the Tour of Flanders will be held in its traditional setting of Flanders, Belgium. The Tour of Flanders, also known as Ronde van Vlaanderen or Vlaanderens Mooiste, is one of the most popular one-day classic races in all of professional racing. It’s also one of only two major cobbled classics, which features sections of cobblestone on the race course.
Since 1919, this race has run uninterrupted making it the longest running one-day classic in pro cycling. Additionally, the Tour of Flanders became a part of UCI’s professional circuit in 1989.
Currently, cycling betting sites have a few riders listed as the odds on favorites. Let’s take a look at these Tour of Flanders betting odds to find some betting value and pick a race winner.
The 2019 Tour of Flanders Course
The start of the race will begin in Antwerp for the 3rd straight year. It’s the largest city in Flanders, but was met with criticism when first moved from Bruges to Antwerp. The main action is expected to take place on the climbs of Oude Kwaremont, Paterberg, and Koppenberg. In total, there are at least 17 hills for the riders to try an implement their race strategies and distance themselves from rivals. Through small towns, up steep climbs and over cobblestones, the riders will eventually finish in the city of Oudenaarde once again.
Previous Tour of Flanders Winners
In the 102 races previously held, only 17 riders have won it more than once. This indicates just how tough the Tour of Flanders is. 6 of those 17 riders have won this race 3 times, which is the record for most wins by an individual rider. It should also come as no surprise that Belgium holds the record for most Tour of Flanders wins with 69. Niki Terpstra is the defending champion, but there are three other previous winners scheduled to be in this race as well. The following is a list of previous winners dating back to 2005:
- Tom Boonen in 2005, 2006, 2012
- Alessandro Ballan in 2007
- Stijn Devolder in 2008, 2009
- Favian Cancellara in 2010, 2013, 2014
- Nick Nuyens in 2011
- Alexander Kristoff in 2014
- Peter Sagan in 2016
- Philippe Gilbert in 2017
- Niki Terpstra in 2018
Tour of Flanders Betting Odds
The following Tour of Flanders betting odds are courtesy of Betway:
- Greg Van Avermaet (+650)
- Wout Van Aert (+700)
- Zdenek Stybar (+700)
- Peter Sagan (+750)
- Mathieu Van Der Poel (+1000)
- Oliver Naesen (+1000)
- Philippe Gilbert (+1200)
- Bob Jungels (+1400)
- Niki Terpstra (+1800)
- Yves Lampaert (+2200)
Favorites to win at Flounders
These cyclists are considered odds on favorites to win the 103rd edition of the Tour of Flounders according to the cycling betting sites:
Greg Van Avermaet (+650)
Depending on which cycling betting site you use, Greg Van Avermaet is either the odds on favorite to win or the second favorite. Greg will be the leader for Team CCC at the Tour of Flanders. He resting up this week in preparation for this one-day classic. Currently, GVA has never won the Tour of Flanders and the Belgian would love to win his home country’s premiere race.
Last year, GVA finished 5th overall and 25 seconds behind the winner Niki Terpstra. In 2017, he was runner up, 29 second behind Philippe Gilbert. This year, Van Avermaet comes into the race shooting for his first win and earning the prestigious honors with his fellow countrymen and peers.
GVA started off the 2019 season with a 5th place in the Tour of Oman. He also snagged 3rd at the E3 BinckBan Classic. Unfortunately, he had a rough Milano-Sanremo showing and was without any teammates to really help him. Team CCC leaders and GVA are hoping that the rest of the squad will be able to put GVA in the best position to succeed on Sunday.
Wout Van Aert (+700)
Wout Van Aert is the second odds on favorite according to Betway. However, many other online betting sites with cycling odds have Van Aert as the favorite. Either way, he’ll be a contender and his team Jump-Visma is looking strong so far in 2019.
At the E3 BlincBank Classic, he edged out GVA for second place. He also had a strong showing with 6th place at Milano-Sanremo. However, his team took control of these races at times and looked like one of the best squads in the peloton.
Last year, Wout finished 9th at the Tour of Flanders. It was his first time in the race. He and his teammates are fired up for this year’s race and the 24 year old is definitely someone to watch out for this Sunday.
Zdenek Stybar (+700)
The 33-year-old Stybar is riding well in 2019 and has beaten both Wout Van Aert and Greg Van Avermaet in some regional races. He finished 1st at the E3 BincBank Classic, which WVA and GVA finished 2nd and 3rd respectively. Zdenek also won Het Nieuwsblad Elite a month ago as well. Stybar’s Deceuninck-Quick-Step team has been riding strong this year and their race strategies have proved to be better than most other teams participating in the classics.
Stybar finished 10th last year in the Tour of Flanders. He was 67th in 2017, which was a drop from his 8th place in 2016. Stybar has finished 2nd twice at Paris-Roubaix and has won stages in the Tour de France and the Vuelta a Espana.
With his recent success, and his lengthy experience as a pro, Stybar has put himself in the conversation with Wout, Greg and Peter Sagan as the favorite to win the Tour of Flanders on Sunday. If Stybar does win the 2019 Tour of Flanders, he will become the 8th cyclist to have accomplished the E3-Ronde double. The last man to accomplish the duo was Terpstra in 2018.
Peter Sagan (+750)
The 29-year-old Slovakian is probably the most popular rider in this race despite not being a local Belgian cyclist. Sagan has often been referred to as the “rock star of cycling” as his personality is only eclipsed by what he can do on a bike.
Sagan has raced well in 2019 so far. He finished 3rd at the Tour Down Under in January, he was 9th at Tirreno-Adriatico and 4th at Milano-Sanremo. Unfortunately, Sagan had mechanical issues at E3 that left him with a 17th place finish. But, his cycling legs appear to be back and he’s definitely talented enough to win this race on Sunday.
Sagan won the 2016 Tour of Flanders and finished 6th in 2018, which was an Improvement from 27th in 2017. Prior to his 2016 victory, Sagan finished 4th in 2015. Some pundits believe Sagan will outlast the rest of the field on Sunday. Will the rock star of cycling get his first win of the year?
Tour of Flanders Betting Value
The following riders offer solid betting value for this Sunday’s Tour of Flanders based on their past performances in this race and their current season so far:
Niki Terpstra (+1800)
As mentioned, Terpstra is the reigning champ for the Tour of Flanders. Unfortunately, things haven’t gone as well as Niki hoped for in the early portion of 2019. While his rivals were finishing within the Top 5, Terpstra finished 15th at E3, 56th at Milano-Sanremo and 63rd at Paris Niece. Last year, Terpstra won both the E3 and the Tour of Flanders. But, he doesn’t appear to be on the same level that he was at last year.
Prior to last year’s Tour of Flanders win, Terpstra finished 3rd in 2017, 10th in 2016, and 2nd in 2015. With 4 straight top 10 finishes, a win, and a runner up during that span, Terpstra offers great value for this weekend’s Tour of Flanders.
Alexander Kristoff (+2800)
Kristoff is still considered one of the top sprinters in all of cycling. He has 3 Tour de France stage wins, and has also won the Milano-Sanremo in 2014 and the Tour of Flanders in 2015. Kristoff only managed a 16th place finish last year. That was down from his 5th place finish in 2017 and 4th place in 2016.
Kristoff is a legitimate threat this year because he just won the Ghent-Wevelgem, which is the dress rehearsal for the Tour of Flanders. Kristoff beat other top contenders in a sprint and claimed his first win of the season. Last year, he finished 25th at the GW and 40th at E3.
If Kristoff can hang with others up the steep hills in the Tour of Flanders, he will outsprint the competition for his second career win of this prestigious race. However, that is a big “if.”
Luke Rowe (+3300)
At Ghent-Wevelgem last weekend, Luke Rowe looked strong in his 18th place finish. He crossed the gap to the 4 leaders on his own, which included riders like Peter Sagan. Unfortunately, a larger pack caught up to the leaders and there was a bunch sprint at the end of the race which Alexander Kristoff won. The Ghent-Wevelgem is the warm-up for Tour of Flanders and Rowe’s performance has given him and Team Sky more confidence heading into this weekend’s race.
Rowe’s best finish at the Tour of Flanders is 5th place in 2016. In 2017, he finished 120th and in 2018 he was not in the race.
This year, Rowe is hoping to gain some individual glory for himself before the Grand Tours start and he’s called on to help lead the Team Sky train through Italy, France and Spain.
Alejandro Valverde (+3300)
Valverde is riding in his first ever Tour of Flanders this weekend. There are many critics who doubt his ability to ride over cobbles. Additionally, they point to his struggles in 2019 as another reason to doubt his chances on Sunday. Valverde hasn’t been winning races this year, like he did last year. But, his team manager points to Alejandro’s decision to race in the Giro next month as a reason for his lack of wins. Valverde has been training and racing with the Giro in mind.
Nevertheless, Valverde is one of the most accomplished riders in this race. He’s proven to still be very competitive at the age of 38. He plans on retiring in 2021, and wanted to race in some of the prestigious one day classics for the first time.
As someone who’s watched Valverde’s entire pro career, albeit mostly during the Grand Tours, you can never count this man out. And, that’s why I have him as a value bet. Valverde can probably out-climb anyone in the race, still has enough juice for a sprint, and is savvy enough to win on tactics alone.
Top Longshot to win at Tour of Flanders
Michael Matthews (+4000) will also be competing in his first Tour of Flanders and he has the cycling skills to make some noise in this race. For starters, Matthews just had a great performance at the Volta a Catalunya where he won the points classification after winning two stages. Matthews said he went there to train, but ended up racing well. Matthews also had a nice showing at Milano-Sanremo when he finished 12th.
For his career, Matthews has won 8 total stages across the 3 Grand Tours. He’s also snagged 3 stages at Paris-Nice. But, arguably his biggest cycling accomplishment was when he won the points classification (green jersey) in the 2017 Tour de France. Keep in mind that’s the year Peter Sagan was disqualified for a ridiculous bumping with another cyclist.
Matthews will have to battle Sagan and others this weekend to win this race. His Team Sunweb will support Matthews in Belgium on Sunday, which means Matthews might just have the legs and team tactics to upset the field and win the race.
And, the 2019 Tour of Flanders Winner is…
One of 6 or 7 riders could actually win this race. It’s become one of the hardest races to predict. I believe we will see GVA, WVA, Terpstra and Kristoff all there in the end. But, I think we’re going to see an angry and motivated Peter Sagan on Sunday. He’s had some bad luck in recent races and was sick in early March. He’s apparently over the illness and looking to become a two-time winner of this race. I believe he’s going to pull off a Sagan finish at the end of the race and pull out the win.
Tour of Flanders Betting Recap
- Peter Sagan (+750)
- Niki Terpstra (+1800)
- Alexander Kristoff (+2800)
- Luke Rowe (+3300)
- Alejandro Valverde (+3300)
- Michael Matthews (+4000)