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Liege 2013 A Wide Open Affair
21 Apr, 2013
With no standout classics specialist present for the 2013 Liege Bastogne Liege the Grand Tour kings Contador, Nibali and Rodriguez have been thrust into the limelight for the oldest of Belgian Monuments.  With a parcours favouring the rouler and a distance edging toward 270km the last man standing may well be one not feeling overdone in the week before the depart.  With the absence of Classics stars Cancellara, Sagan and Boonen World Champion Phillipe Gilbert will be looking to get the monkey off his back for 2013 and slate up his first victory in the rainbow jersey.  The former winner and Belgian all-rounder has been edging his way toward peak condition with a reasonable showing in the mid week Fleche Wallone and is perfectly suited to the rolling terrain.
Andy Schleck riding his way back from the dead takes the protected position within the Radioshack team, if the Luxembourger is on a good day he could see his best finish for the season.
The Famous  Roche aux Faucons climb has been removed from the race this year due to uncompleted road works, but despite the loss of this climb, the course still offers a ton of opportunities in the latter stages to split the race. To replace the Faucons, race organisers ASO have brought in the Colonster, a 2.4km climb situated 17 kilometres to go.  With a gradient of 6% it could well be the platform to launch a successful attack on the groups fatigued legs.  While the new climb may not be as decisive as the Faucons, the race's emphasis will be on the iconic La Redoute at 223km and Côte de Saint-Nicolas at 256km, both of which have been used as launch pads for winning attacks.

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