E3 BinckBank

In the morning I took Mo for a nice long walk, first down the road we were on, then turning up a side road where we saw some local folks that told me which roads the race would actually be on. It will pass fairly close by on the ‘main’ road, then do a large loop and come back up the road behind us.
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A little later Colin and I walked Mo down the road in the other direction – there is a fabulous looking house of brick with a thatched roof, across the road from another VIP-type event place with over eighty tables, right next to a local pub/taverna. We went to the pub and ordered coffee, which we had to carry to our outside table ourselves because they were ‘going to be very busy later’. There was a very cool old car outside that was going to act as a ‘beer wagon’.
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We drank our coffee in the sun – we hadn’t bothered ordering a cappuccino, but the coffee with milk was pretty good. The ‘main’ road was marked every 8 metres or so with the year and name of the racer that had won the Tour of Flanders.
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Afterwards we walked all the way down past where we were parked and along the route backwards to find a spot to sit and watch from.
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There was one nice spot that had a wide bit on each side of the road and was near the top of a fairly long climb – no parking allowed so no other folks were there yet. Having decided that’s where we wanted to be we went back to the campervan, packed up some food, grabbed the lawn chairs and went down to claim our spot.
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We were alone for quite a while, then slowly but surely other folks joined us. At one point a female photographer stopped and we chatted a bit – she was very interesting and had done personal photo shoots with quite a few famous racers.
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We waited until the last racer had passed then quickly packed up our bags and chairs and hoofed it up the hill so we could watch the end of the race on the jumbo-tron tv they’d setup for the ‘VIPs’. We dropped the chairs at the campervan on the way and saw that the whole road we were on was lined with VIP buses – over 40 of them.
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As we were not the only ones to do this the road was completely blocked, yet even as the race was still on some of the VIP buses thought they should be able to bull-doze their way through. A couple of motos tried to clear a path beeping and whistling, but they weren’t police and they crowd refused to get off the road for them – they eventually gave up and parked it until the race was over and we were all ready to disperse. That was actually a pretty sweet moment – refusing to move and all the VIPs forced to just sit there – ha!!
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