La Fleche Wallonne 2021 Betting

2021-La-Fleche-Wallonne

On Wednesday, April 21st, the 85th edition of La Fleche Wallonne, which means Walloon Arrow in French, gets underway in Charleroi, Belgium, and winds through Wallonia before finishing in Huy.

Last year, the race was moved to September due to the pandemic. This year, La Fleche Wallonne returns to its traditional spot in April. This race has been held every year since its inception in 1936 except for 1940 due to World War II.

La Fleche Wallonne is one of three Ardennes Classics races along with Liege-Bastogne-Liege and the Amstel Gold Race. Typically, all three races are held within a week of each other.

The 2021 edition of the Amstel Gold Race was held on April 18th and won by Wout Van Aert. Liege-Bastogne-Liege will take place on April 25th. Like usual, La Fleche Wallonne is sandwiched between the other two Belgium classics.

The 2021 La Fleche Wallonne Route

This year’s route is roughly 194km from Charleroi to Huy. It’s a hilly course that features the following climbs with the distance to each point on the route in parenthesis:

Cote d’Yvoir (51.5km)
Cote de Thon (85.7km)
Cote de Gryonne (94.9km)
Cote de Haut-Bois (100.4km)
Cote de Gives (114.7km)
Mur de Huy (130km)
Cote d’Ereffe (142.7km)
Cote du chemin des Gueuses (152.2km)
Mur de Huy (2nd) (161.8km)
Cote d’Ereffe (174.4km)
Cote du chemin des Gueuses (183.9km)
Mur de Huy (193.6km)

Like past editions of this race, La Fleche Wallonne will be decided by the Mur de Huy. The route will take the riders over this climb three times with the finish coming on the third ascent of the Mur.

? De Charleroi à Huy, voici le détail des 192 km et 12 côtes de la #FlecheWallonne 2021.

? From Charleroi to Huy, a detailed look at the 192km and the 12 climbs of the #FlecheWallonne 2021. pic.twitter.com/q10FAsqr9i

— La Flèche Wallonne (@flechewallonne) April 17, 2021

On paper, this climb doesn’t seem to be too extreme with just a 1.3km distance at 9.6 percent. However, there are portions of the climb that see a steepness of 23 percent, which will be brutal and determine the outcome of this race.

The winner will be the cyclist who can conquer the Mur.

Previous La Fleche Wallonne Winners

La Fleche Wallonne was first held in 1936 and won by Philemon De Meersman. Some of the sport’s greatest cyclists of all-time have also won this race like Eddy Merckx and Bernard Hinault.

Alejandro Valverde holds the record for the most all-time victories of this race at five. Marc Hirschi is the defending race winner.

The following is a list of previous winners dating back to 2004:

2004: Davide Rebellin
2005: Danilo Di Luca
2006: Alejandro Valverde
2007: Davide Rebellin
2008: Kim Kirchen
2009: Davide Rebellin
2010: Cadel Evans
2011: Philippe Gilbert
2012: Joaquim Rodríguez
2013: Daniel Moreno
2014: Alejandro Valverde
2015: Alejandro Valverde
2016: Alejandro Valverde
2017: Alejandro Valverde
2018: Julian Alaphilippe
2019: Julian Alaphilippe
2020: Marc Hirschi

⛰ Le Mur de Huy est l’impitoyable juge de paix de la #FlecheWallonne depuis 1985. Seuls les meilleurs puncheurs s’y imposent !

⛰ The Mur de Huy has been the judge and jury on the #FlecheWallonne since 1985. Only the best puncheurs prevail! pic.twitter.com/tSCwVbRIgW

— La Flèche Wallonne (@flechewallonne) April 16, 2021

La Fleche Wallonne Betting Odds

The following betting odds are courtesy of online cycling betting sites:

Click Here to View the Full List of La Fleche Wallonne Betting OddsPrimoz Roglic (+250)
Julian Alaphilippe (+400)
Thomas Pidcock (+600)
Tadej Pogacar (+800)
Alejandro Valverde (+1000)
Michael Woods (+1600)
Benoit Cosnefroy (+2000)
Marc Hirschi (+2200)
Jakob Fuglsang (+2500)
Mauri Vansevenant (+2500)
David Gaudu (+2800)
Maximilian Schachmann (+3300)
Richard Carapaz (+4000)
Michal Kwiatkowski (+4000)
Jonas Vingegaard (+4000)
Adam Yates (+4000)
Esteban Chaves (+5000)
Dylan Teuns (+5000)
Enric Mas (+5000)
Davide Formolo (+6600)
Sergio Higuita (+1000)
Bauke Mollema (+6600)
Warren Barguil (+8000)
Guillaume Martin (+8000)
Michael Matthews (+8000)

The Betting Favorites to Win La Fleche Wallonne

Primoz Roglic (+250)

This will be the 4th race of the season for Roglic who aims to win his first ever La Fleche Wallonne. He is a two time winner of Liege-Bastogne-Liege, but has never competed in Wallonne prior to this week’s event.

As one of the sport’s top Grand Tour riders, Roglic will finish his spring season after Sunday’s Liege and spend the next two months preparing for the Tour de France in July.

So far, Roglic has had mixed success in 2021. He finished 15th in the GC for Paris-Nice in March, but was 1st in the points jersey and third in the mountains classification.

His next race came one month later in the Itzulia Basque Country six stage event. Roglic won all three major jerseys and conquered the peloton in that race including his rival Pogacar.

Primoz last competed a few days ago in the Amstel Gold Race where he set out to help his teammate Wout Van Aert. Roglic shutdown most of the attacks before fading late in the race. However, the team’s tactics worked as Van Aert would win the race.

Roglic’s overall skillset and sprinting will make him one of the top contenders in La Fleche Wallonne.

Julian Alaphilippe (+400)

Alaphilippe returns to this race for the first time since 2019. It will be his 5th appearance in La Fleche Wallonne. In his previous four starts, Julian has two wins and two runner ups. Alaphilippe was victorious in 2018 and 2019. He was beaten by Alejandro Valverde in 2015 and 2016.

Alaphilippe started off his season with a 2nd place result for the GC at the Tour de la Provence in February. Other highlights included a 2nd place at Strade Bianche and a victory on Stage 2 of Tierreno-Adriatico.

We continue our Ardennes Classics campaign this Wednesday at @flechewallonne, which will feature three ascents of the iconic Mur de Huy: https://t.co/RwtxkjtRIv pic.twitter.com/31YEdhA9sM

— Deceuninck-QuickStep (@deceuninck_qst) April 19, 2021

Unfortunately, things haven’t been as great for the French superstar in 2021 as they were in previous years. He finished 16th at Milano-Sanremo, 42nd at the Tour de Flanders, and 6th in the Amstel Gold Race.

Can Alaphilippe recapture his 2019 championship form?

Thomas Pidcock (+600)

For Pidcock, this will be his first ever appearance in La Fleche Wallonne. The 21 year old British rider enters this Wednesday’s race on a high after finishing 2nd to Wout Van Aert at the Amstel Gold Race on April 18th.

Pidcock’s best result of the year was on April 14th when he won the Brabantse Pijl by outsprinting Wout Van Aert and Matteo Trentin who are two of the top one-day riders in the sport today.

He also has some other solid finishes on the season like 5th at Strade Bianche and 15th at Milano-Sanremo.

Pidcock is on the best team in this race – Ineos Grenadiers. This squad also features Adam Yates, Richard Carapaz, Tao Hart Geoghegan, and Michal Kwiatkowski. He will have plenty of protection along the way and enough support to be in the front on the final climb.

Tadej Pogacar (+800)

One of the best GC riders in the sport today, Pogacar will make his 3rd ever appearance in La Fleche Wallonne. He was 9th last year and 53rd in 2019.

Pogacar has had a strong 2021 so far. He started off the year winning the UAE Tour by beating out Adam Yates. He followed that up with a 7th place finish at Strade Bianche before winning Tirreno-Adriatico and beating other riders like Wout Van Aert, Mikel Landa and Egan Bernal.

Pogacar was the favorite heading into Itzulia Basque Country, but ended up finishing 3rd in the GC as he was 67 seconds behind race winner and fellow GC rival Primoz Roglic.

Tadej has the talent to win La Fleche Wallonne. But, will he have the firepower to beat punchy riders like Alaphilippe and his own UAE-Team Emirates teammate Marc Hirschi?

Alejandro Valverde (+1000)

The 40 year old Alejandro Valverde is the most decorated cyclist in the history of La Fleche Wallonne. As mentioned, he’s won this race a record five times and is the only rider to have ever won this event four years in a row.

In his 14 previous appearances, Valverde has seven podium finishes with five victories and two second place results.

?‍♀️?‍♂️ Training together in the Ardennes prior to @flechewallonne @LiegeBastogneL! #RodamosJuntos ? pic.twitter.com/s00WbiqXfr

— Movistar Team (@Movistar_Team) April 19, 2021

There’s a very good chance that this could be Valverde’s last appearance in La Fleche Wallonne. His team recognizes this and aim to support Alejandro as much as possible especially since he’s coming into this week’s event in good form:

 “It’s been very exciting to see Alejandro, still up there finishing third in Vallter 2000 in the Volta and how he won the GP Indurain, with a textbook-perfect strategy. And at the Itzulia although the two Slovenians” –  Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) and Primož Roglič (Jumbo-Visma), third and first respectively – “were in a class of their own, he showed a really strong level throughout the week, and I would say he deserved to be on the podium. At the bare minimum, and particularly if these are his last Ardennes, we know we’ve got to make the most of his form there.”

Valverde started off the season on a rough note with a 40th place result at the UAE Tour and a 47th at Strade Bianche.

However, he turned things around at the Volta a Catalunya with a 4th in the GC. Valverde picked up his first win, and the team’s first win, of the season at the GP Miguel Indurain two weeks ago. He then followed that up with a 7th at Itzulia Basque Country with a 3rd on Stage 3.

Valverde will be a factor in the 85th edition of La Fleche Wallonne. The only question is how big of a factor will he be.

The Best La Fleche Wallonne Betting Value

Michael Woods (+1600)

The 34 year old Canadian makes his 6th appearance in the La Fleche Wallonne and is looking to build off his successful race in 2020 where he finished 3rd overall.

Woods started off 2021 strong with a Stage 2 win and a 2nd in the GC for the Tour de Alpes Maritimes in February. He was 2nd on Stage 4 in the Volta Catalunya as he outsprinted some of the best GC riders of that race.

Since then, he didn’t finish the Itzulia Basque Country and was 32nd at the Amstel Gold Race.

Woods is a freelancer on the bike and will follow the best riders until he can try to attack. He offers some value based on his result last year and his early success in 2021.

Marc Hirschi (+2200)

As mentioned above, Hirschi won this race in 2020 to the surprise of many. But, with the reworked 2020 season, Hirschi went from his great form in the Tour de France to winning La Fleche Wallonne.

Hirschi switched teams and joined UAE-Team Emirates which is led by Tadej Pojacar. He made his team debut at the Volta a Catalunya and finished 49th overall.

Hirschi followed that up with a 47th at the Itzulia Basque Country and 35th in the Amstel Gold Race. These weren’t the results that Hirschi and his fans were hoping for.

The 24 year old Swiss rider acknowledges the slow start to his season, but remains hopeful for La Fleche Wallonne and Liege-Bastogne-Liege:

“A little bit but I’m happy with my performance, I just missed a little bit. I hope that Fleche will go a bit better and that Liège goes even better than that. I’m looking forward to Fleche and I hope that the trend continues like this and that I can take something from every race. I think for Wednesday it’s a pretty easy race. It’s the same tactics on the same climb, mostly.”

Hirschi provides value at +2200 considering he’s the defending champ. However, he might be a better choice for Liege-Bastogne-Liege than Wednesday’s La Fleche Wallonne since it will give his legs more time to get into proper form.

Maximilian Schachmann (+3300)

The 27 year old German rider comes into this race with some momentum as he finished 3rd in the Amstel Gold Race just behind Van Aert and Pidcock who raced to a photo finish.

The Amstel Gold result continued a solid 2021 season for Schachmann who won Paris-Nice and was 14th at Milano-Sanremo.

This will be his 4th start at Le Fleche Wallonne with his best finish coming in 2019 when he was 5th. Schachmann was 8th in 2018. He appears to be trending upward at this race and comes in with solid form.

Michal Kwiatkowski (+4000)

Kwiatkowski is a solid one day, classics and monuments rider with career wins at Strade Bianche, Amstel Gold Race and Milano-Sanremo.

This year, Kwiatkowski won the Tour du Gard in February, was 17th at Milano-Sanremo, and was 8th at the Amstel Gold Race where his teammate Pidcock finished 2nd.

I expect Kwiatkowski to be a solid helper for Pidcock this week. However, if the youngster has poor form then expect the 30 year old Kwiatkowski to be next in line for Team Ineos Grenadiers.

Top Longshot to Win La Fleche Wallonne

Warren Barguil at +8000 odds is my longshot pick for this race. Let’s be honest here, the winner is going to come from one of the favorites in this race and/or one of my betting value picks.

With that said, Barguil is a credible pick for a longshot considering he finished 4th in this race last year. In 2021, he’s had some ups and downs with no wins and just a 5th on Stage 8 of Paris-Nice as his best result.

This week, Barguil will be the main rider for his team and someone that’s typically a good climber. The question is whether or not he will have the legs to match the firepower of some of the favorites.

Best Bets to Finish in the Top 3

The following odds are courtesy of online sportsbooks and represent a rider’s odds for finishing in the Top 3:

Primoz Roglic (-167)
Julian Alaphilippe (+100)
Thomas Pidcock (+140)
Tadej Pogacar (+200)
Alejandro Valverde (+200)

The podium finishers will come from this group of five riders as they’re the strongest of the peloton. Woods and Hirschi have outside chances of crashing the Top 3, but they appear to be just a step behind these five.

Roglic is the favorite to win this race and to finish in the Top 3. He’s the clear-cut leader of Team Jumbo-Visma at La Fleche Wallonne after riding for Wout Van Aert in the Amstel Gold Race a few days ago. If his legs are on form the he will be the man to beat.

Getting even money on Julian Alaphilippe to finish in the Top 3 is just too good to pass up. Although he hasn’t been at peak form, the French star has proven that he is one of the best in this race.

Speaking of the best, Alejandro Valverde is the best rider in the history of La Fleche Wallonne. I will be rooting for the Spaniard to finish on the podium in what could be his last time in this race.

The other two riders to keep an eye on are Pidcock and Pojacar. Both men have the skills to win this race and certainly finish in the Top 3.

Of these five riders, along with Woods and Hirschi, I like Roglic, Alaphilippe and Pidcock to finish on the podium for the 2021 edition of La Fleche Wallonne.

Who Wins the 2021 La Fleche Wallonne?

Now that we have narrowed the peloton down to three riders, it’s time to pick the winner from this trio.

Alaphilippe is the most accomplished rider of the three, but his form has been off in 2021 as he has yet to really dominate like he did the last few years. I want so much to pick Julian to win this race, but I can’t ignore his form so far this season.

? For whom is the Mur?

? The #FlecheWallonne 2021 will be showing off some racing royalty!

? The winners of 2020’s 3 Grands Tours will be present to try and deny current holder ??@MarcHirschi and World champion ?? @alafpolak1!

The main contenders: ➡ https://t.co/WnkVgA69XD pic.twitter.com/TmdYgAH4xo

— La Flèche Wallonne (@flechewallonne) April 14, 2021

Pidcock comes into this race with better form than Alaphilippe and almost won the Amstel Gold Race a few days ago. He lost in a photo finish. Furthermore, he has the best supporting cast in this race and could be in the perfect position to win if everything goes to plan.

With that said, I am taking Primoz Roglic to win this race. Last year, he beat Hirschi, Pogacar,and Alaphilippe in a sprint to win Liege-Bastogne-Liege which is the third of the Ardennes Classics and a sister race to La Fleche Wallonne.

I see him doing something similar like that on Wednesday in the 85th running of La Fleche Wallonne. This is going to be an exciting race with so much star power set to take the starting lineup on April 21st.

Rick Rockwell

As a longtime freelance writer, avid sports fan, former athlete, and experienced sports bettor, Rick Rockwell has risen up the ranks at GamblingSites.org to become the self-professed “King of the Blog” in his first year with the site. …

View all posts by Rick Rockwell