My cycle ride this morning was a fairly easy 51 km loop to the west of Heerlen, in the general direction of Valkenburg and Maastricht.

Tomorrow (Sunday) the legendary Amstel Gold Race starts in Maastricht and finishes in Valkenburg.

However, unknown to me a large amateur cycling event takes place today on exactly the same route as tomorrow’s race and  coincidentally uses some of the route I had planned for myself.

Today’s event is called ‘Tour Version Amstel Gold Race’ whereby entrants can choose any one of six different length rides based on tomorrow’s race route.

There is no winner, just the satisfaction of riding the famous race course.

As I approached Valkenburg I encountered swarms of cyclists as they rode past me and also in the opposite direction. I’d estimate they numbered in the many hundreds if not a thousand or more.

There were course marshals and police motorcycles monitoring things and in general I would say the whole thing was very well organised.

I was over halfway along my chosen route before these cyclists diminished.

It was an interesting experience and a timely reminder to myself never to participate in such an event.

I will, however, enjoy tomorrow’s racing on TV at home.

Today’s featured image is of Kasteel Genhoes in Oud Valkenburg.

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