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  1. #1
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    Flanders/Ghent/Paris Roubaix trip

    My buddy and I are going to Belgium next April to spectate/ride/drink beer. The plan for now is to ride the pre-flanders public ride,watch the race, watch Ghent Wevelgum and Paris Roubaix as a minimum. Any info would be appreciated. thanks

  2. #2
    duh...
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    eat frites

  3. #3
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    Here you go:

    2007 Flanders trip: De Ronde van Vlaanderen 2007
    2006 Flanders trip: A Sunday in Flanders...
    2008 Roubaix trip: will post later....
    Biking round the world -- Where have I been with my bike?

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by clubob
    My buddy and I are going to Belgium next April to spectate/ride/drink beer. The plan for now is to ride the pre-flanders public ride,watch the race, watch Ghent Wevelgum and Paris Roubaix as a minimum. Any info would be appreciated. thanks
    A few things

    -Mayonnaise is your friend
    -Liquid sunshine. Bring a nice rain jacket
    -That "Mud" that sprays up from the roads....thats not mud

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    Quote Originally Posted by bigpinkt
    -Liquid sunshine. Bring a nice rain jacket
    -
    Beer is a good substitute for sunshine in Belgium.

    Climbing on cobbles is easy; its descending on cobbles that will test your mettle.

    If your car breaks down, do not park it in a bike lane -- don't ask how I know that.

    If you are a francophone and attempt to speak French in Flanders, you will not get very far. Englilsh is preferred over French in Flanders.
    I try to be perfectly civil, until someone really pisses me off.

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    thanks. the french fries I could have figured out. the links are good.

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    philippec, great stories and pics. thanks. What about tying Ghent and Roubaix together? Is there a public pre-roubaix ride? The second year looked like the weather was much warmer. Epic weather is all well and good but I'd prefer to be spectating in my bike clothes on a nice day. And man, I like mayo, but the glob on those fries..... I don't know.

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    Quote Originally Posted by clubob
    philippec, great stories and pics. thanks. What about tying Ghent and Roubaix together? Is there a public pre-roubaix ride? The second year looked like the weather was much warmer. Epic weather is all well and good but I'd prefer to be spectating in my bike clothes on a nice day. And man, I like mayo, but the glob on those fries..... I don't know.
    If you are renting a car, all of the spring races are relatively close to each other. For example, Roubaix is less than an hour's drive from Ghent. http://www.viamichelin.fr/viamicheli...UTF-8&x=32&y=6 I think that there is a Roubaix cyclosportif, but it is run in June rather than around the time of the Paris Roubaix race. The Tour of Flanders cyclosportif, however, is run the day before the Tour of Flanders and is a great deal of fun. It is more akin to a US recreational century than a race -- there even was a beer tent at the last rest stop on the route in 2006. It also is very easy to get a spot for the Tour of Flanders cyclosportif -- I think that I signed up only a week or two before the event. http://www.sport.be/cyclingtour/rond...eren/2008/eng/
    I try to be perfectly civil, until someone really pisses me off.

  9. #9
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    what kind of car would you suggest. two guys with bikes and stuff.

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    What about the Paris-Roubaix trip? It looks like I'll be staying in Chaumont. Is there a site that gives tips on spectating P-R?

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    do you mean this Chaumont? http://maps.google.fr/maps?hl=fr&tab...umont%20france

    Because that is pretty far from the action....

    the course map is put up on www.letour.fr a few weeks before the race
    Biking round the world -- Where have I been with my bike?

  12. #12
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    Chaumont, Belgium. For part of the trip anyway. I have aquaintances there.

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    Quote Originally Posted by clubob
    what kind of car would you suggest. two guys with bikes and stuff.
    The first thing that you need to know about European auto rentals is that automatic transmission cars are hard to obtain and very expensive. So, I hope that you know how to drive a standard transmission car. I have done some learning on the road, but you really should have a little practice with a standard transmission before you rent one.

    The car that I have rented most frequently is Europe (and it is possible to get an automatic from most rental agencies) is a Renault Megane Scenic. Since there will be only two of you, almost any auto that has a hatch-type back and back seats that fold down should work for you. If you fold down the back seatsof a Megane Scenic, you can get two bike cases (such as a Trico Iron Case) in the rear of the car. I also have had good luck with a Mercedes A 150. I also rented a Volkswagen once in Europe that worked well, but I cannot remember the model name.

    The two best sites that I have found for auto rentals are www.autoeurope.com and www.europcar.com
    I try to be perfectly civil, until someone really pisses me off.

  14. #14
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    thanks for the info. that will be very helpful. I'm good with a stick and really looking forward to driving over there (I love rally racing too).

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    I second the Renault Megane Scenic recommendation.
    We rented one in France (6-speed manual) and it easily swallowed 5 people's 2-weeks worth of stuff, including baby strollers, etc. Drove nice, plenty of pickup.
    (We didn't have bikes, but the car is tall so that 2+ bikes could easily fit inside with minimal hassles.)
    Another option would be a VW Touran.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MarkS
    The first thing that you need to know about European auto rentals is that automatic transmission cars are hard to obtain and very expensive. So, I hope that you know how to drive a standard transmission car. I have done some learning on the road, but you really should have a little practice with a standard transmission before you rent one.

    The car that I have rented most frequently is Europe (and it is possible to get an automatic from most rental agencies) is a Renault Megane Scenic. Since there will be only two of you, almost any auto that has a hatch-type back and back seats that fold down should work for you. If you fold down the back seatsof a Megane Scenic, you can get two bike cases (such as a Trico Iron Case) in the rear of the car. I also have had good luck with a Mercedes A 150. I also rented a Volkswagen once in Europe that worked well, but I cannot remember the model name.

    The two best sites that I have found for auto rentals are www.autoeurope.com and www.europcar.com
    +1 on the Scenic, and even better the Grand Scenic. I once stuffed my two kids, wife, nanny, myself, all our luggage, and Trico bike strapped on the top into one of those. We looked like the the Beverly Hillbilly's heading to the "Hills of Beverly". These days I get the Opel Meriva which has even more room and is usually the same price. Budget and Hertz rent them.

  17. #17
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    Resurrecting this thread... I've been toying with the idea of doing Roubaix-Aremberg (the full distance is way too hardcore for me ).

    Is the road open all year?
    Can it be ridden in any way (from Roubaix to Aremberg or only from Aremberg to Roubaix)?
    Any place where my family could stay/wait? Roubaix or Wallers?

    Best transportation from Paris? I see there's a train to Roubaix and Wallers, but not to Aremberg, I think.

    How's weather in early August?

    Any any other useful pointer would be welcome.

    Thanks!!
    "que nadie se crea que subimos todos estos puertos sólo a base de spaghetti" - Fernando Escartín

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