The 2019 spring Classics season is nearly over after many exhilarating races including Philippe Gilbert (Deceuninck – Quick-Step) winning in the Roubaix velodrome and Mathieu van der Poel’s (Corendon-Circus) astonishing victory in the Amstel Gold Race.
Liège-Bastogne-Liège is the last chance for many to finish on the top step of the podium, if they’ve so far had a fruitless spring, before we move into a summer packed with Grand Tours and stage racing.
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Fou former winners take the start line:Philippe Gilbert, road race world champion Alejandro Valverde (Movistar), Team Sky’s Wout Poels and Dan Martin (UAE Team Emirates).
The race takes place on Sunday April 28 2019, and one of the main questions is can anyone stop Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck – Quick-Step)? Here are the odds of the Frenchman to take the win as well as the other contenders vying to claim the victory for themselves.
Alaphilippe has become accustomed to having the shortest odds in a bike race after a formidable spring Classics campaign. He picked up wins at Milan-San Remo, Strade Bianche and La Flèche Wallonne, as well as achieving top five finishes at the Amstel Gold Race and Brabantse Pijl. With odds of 9/4 the bookies seem fairly certain, would you bet against him?
One rider who will be determined to break the Alaphilippe winning streak is Jakob Fuglsang (Astana), having lost out to him a number of times this spring. The Dane finished second behind Alaphilippe at both Strade Bianche and La Flèche Wallonne, and whilst he beat him to the last place on the podium at the Amstel Gold Race, the pair conspired to throw away a guaranteed one-two finish after a game of cat and mouse that gave Mathieu van der Poel the win. Fuglsang is second favourite at 4/1 and will be desperate to finally take a win after a number of close calls.
Next up is Maximilian Schachmann (Bora-Hansgrohe), offered at 12/1. The German has had an impressive spring, with two top five finishes in the Amstel Gold Race and La Flèche Wallonne, as well as numerous stage wins in the Tour of the Basque Country and the Volta a Catalunya.
Team Sky’s Michał Kwiatkowski animated La Flèche Wallonne on Wednesday, but was ultimately found out by Alaphilippe and Fuglsang as they made their way up the Mur de Huy for the final time. He’s clearly in good form, though, with a third place finish in Milan-San Remo and the points classification in Paris-Nice. With odds of 12/1, the Pole will be looking to add a second Monument win to his 2017 Milan-San Remo title.
Michael Matthews (Team Sunweb) has two top 10 finishes in the Tour of Flanders and La Flèche Wallonne this year, staying true to his spring Classics palmarès that’s littered with single figure finishes and the odd podium. He’s valued at 14/1 to finally come out on top.
Road race world champion Alejandro Valverde failed to contest the win at La Flèche Wallonne despite winning it five times previously, and will line up at Liège-Bastogne-Liège as a four-time winner, one victory behind record holder Eddy Merckx. Two top 10 finishes in Milan-San Remo and Tour of Flanders mean the Spaniard is offered at 16/1 to take the win.
Adam Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) says he “just needs a bit of luck” to claim his first Monument at Liège-Bastogne-Liège. The Brit finished 8th the last time he took the start in 2017 and despite crashing out of La Flèche Wallonne has an outside chance of victory. He’s priced at 18/1.
Bahrain Merida’s Vincenzo Nibali stretched his legs last week at the Tour of the Alps, attacking on nearly every stage as he gears up for another summer of Grand Tour racing. He followed up last year’s Milan-San Remo victory with an eighth place finish this year, and alongside his two Giro di Lombardia victories will be looking to add a third Monument to his collection.
A third place in last year’s Liège-Bastogne-Liège will give Romain Bardet (Ag2r La Mondiale) hope that he can offer an improved performance this year, having also just missed out on the rainbow jersey in the Autumn, taking second place in Innsbruck at the road race world championships. Will the Frenchman finally climb to the top step of the podium? He’s an outside bet at 30/1.
Tom Dumoulin’s best performance at La Doyenne was last year’s 15th place, having never got close to threatening for the win before that. Alongside Michael Matthews, he will lead Team Sunweb as the German outfit look to take their first victory this spring.
Liège-Bastogne-Liège 2019 odds (Winner – Oddschecker)
Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Deceuninck – Quick-Step 9/4
Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana 4/1
Maximilian Schachmann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe 12/1
Michał Kwiatkowski (Pol) Team Sky 12/1
Michael Matthews (Aus) Team Sunweb 14/1
Alejandro Valverde (Esp) Movistar 16/1
Adam Yates (Gbr) Mitchelton-Scott 18/1
Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Bahrain-Merida 20/1
Romain Bardet (Fra) Ag2r La Mondiale 30/1
Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Sunweb 30/1
All odds correct at time of publication