The 2020 cobbled Classics season will reach its peak on Sunday with the Tour of Flanders men’s and Women’s WorldTour races taking place mostly behind closed doors because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The best way to watch the race while staying clear of COVID-19 is to follow it online or on television, and what better place than right here on Cyclingnews?
We’ll bring you full live coverage, reports, results, news, interviews and analysis throughout the races. Read on to find out how to watch the finale to the 2020 Classics season via live stream, no matter your location, with ExpressVPN.
The Tour of Flanders marks the apex of the late-season Classics campaign with the women’s and men’s Driedaagse De Panne a denouement on the Tuesday and Wednesday, respectively, following the Ronde. It’s the last chances for one-day race glory in this odd, upside-down season.
There will be no crowds packed along the cobbled climbs in Flanders – no bodies pressing against barriers shouting the riders up the Oude Kwaremont or Paterberg – but the race action is sure to be heated in particular between the two main favourites, Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) and Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix).
The duo have been rivals in cyclo-cross since their junior days and, with each having their own major successes on the road, have created a steady thrum of drama in the build-up to Sunday after they marked each other out of contention at Gent-Wevelgem.
Should the same happen on the circuits around Oudenaarde, there are plenty of riders keen to take advantage, in particular new world champion Julian Alaphilippe (Elegant-Quickstep), defending champion Alberto Bettiol (EF Pro Cycling), Matteo Trentin (CCC Team) and Gent-Wevelgem winner Mads Pedersen (Trek-Segafredo).
The men face a lonely 244km from Antwerp to Oudenaarde, with empty stands on the 14 cobbled sectors and climbs.
On the women’s side, the race pickings have been so slim this season that riders are sure to be pushing all their chips in to nab a victory in this WorldTour race. Series leader Lizzie Deignan, a winner in the race in 2016, will have a strong team at her service, including Ellen van Dijk and Elisa Longo Borghini.
The women’s race is 135km long, starting and ending in Oudenaarde with nine cobbled sectors and climbs of the Katteberg, Edelare, Leberg, Berendries, Valkenberg, Kanarieberg, Taaienberg and Kruisberg before the finale.
With just one trip over the Kwaremont and Paterberg before a flat run-in, the women’s race often comes down to a small bunch sprint, as in last year’s race where Marta Bastianelli (Alé Cipollini) won. Her team is in doubt after a coronavirus positive, however. Look for world champion Anna van der Breggen (Boels Dolmans) – the 2018 winner – as well as Marianne Vos (CCC Team), Annemiek van Vleuten (Mitchelton-Scott) and Katarzyna Niewiadoma (Canyon-SRAM) to be at the head of the race in Oudenaarde.
Check below for all the details of how to watch all the action from Flanders.
Follow Cyclingnews on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram for alerts on important stories and action during the Tour of Flanders. Meanwhile, ExpressVPN can help you watch the Tour of Flanders, no matter your location.
The races are being aired live across Europe via Eurosport and on the Eurosport Player, with British Eurosport having been showing almost every Classic live.
You can sign up for a subscription to Eurosport Player for £6.99 for a month, £4.99 for a year-long monthly pass, or £39.99 for a 12-month pass. GCN Racing has also been showing select races, though only via app.
In North America, both Fubo.tv and FloBikes are airing the Tour of Flanders men and women’s races.
Subscribing to FloBikes cost $150 for the year and gives you access to watch most of the season’s biggest races. Fubo.tv, meanwhile is available for a week’s free trial, while their most popular package costs $54.99 per month for over 75 channels.
In Australia, SBS will show the Tour of Flanders.
As you might expect, local broadcasters such as Sporza, RTBF, France TV and NOS.nl are showing the bulk of the spring Classics live. Feeds will be geo-restricted, mind.
Check below for a full list of races and broadcasters airing them
If you live outside a broadcast zone or are on holiday outside your country and find that the live streams to be geo-restricted, you can get around this by getting access to them by simulating being back in your home country via a ‘virtual private network’, or VPN, for your laptop, tablet or mobile.
TechRadar tested hundreds of VPNs and recommends the number-one VPN currently available as Express VPN. With ExpressVPN, you can watch on many devices at once including Smart TVs, Fire TV Stick, PC, Mac, iPhone, Android phone, iPads, tablets, etc.
Classics schedule & broadcasters
|Date||Race||English-language broadcasters||Local broadcasters|
|October 18||Tour of Flanders||Eurosport, GCN, FloBikes, Fubo, SBS||Sporza, RTBF|
|October 18||Tour of Flanders Women||Eurosport, GCN||TBC|
|October 21||Driedaagse Brugge-De Panne||Eurosport, GCN||Sporza, RTBF|
|October 21||Driedaagse Brugge-De Panne Women||Eurosport, GCN||TBC|