Montreal hosted the 10th edition of the Grand Prix Cycliste de Québec et Montréal on Sept. 15.
The event was part of the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) World Tour featuring worldwide professional teams, such as Team Katusha Alpecin, Astana Pro Team, and Lotto Soudal.
Montrealers were lucky to have riders such as Julian Alaphilippe from team Deceuninck Quick-Step, Peter Sagan from team Bora-Hansgrohe, and Geraint Thomas from Team Ineos. The three have won multiple stages from many international events, such as Tour de Flanders and Giro d’Italia. Thomas was the winner of the Tour de France in 2018.
Among the cyclists were Team Canada’s riders. Two of the team’s cyclists managed to stay in the breakaway – a small group of riders that take up ground in front of the peloton for different strategic reasons. Some say it is just theatrical – more TV time for the team’s jersey.
Altogether, riders rode a total of 219.6 km on a hilly circuit. The course included three climbs up Camillien-Houde Way, Montée de la Polytechnique, and Claude-Champagne Street for a total of 4,734 metres of elevation.
All ascents are followed by descents. Different bike positioning and strategies helped riders reach top speeds exceeding 80 km/h in the many descents of the circuit.
After roughly six hours of pedalling, riders competed in the final sprint of the race up Du Parc Avenue. Greg van Avermaet from CCC Team took advantage of the early takeoff of some riders to claim the win, followed by Diego Ulissi from UAE (United Arab Emirates) Team Emirates and Ivan Garcia from Bahrain Merida.
Photos by Britanny Giuseppe-Clarke and Jad Abukasm