Our third episode of the 2016 Friends of the Podcast series focuses on Flanders, the area of Belgium that is home to so many races and has produced so many great champions.

With the spring Classics upon us, Lionel Birnie travels to the region once again to find out why bike racing is in its DNA.

As the crow flies it’s about 85 kilometres between the Kemmelberg in the west of Flanders and the Muur at Geraardsbergen in the east. In between it’s almost impossible to find a village or a road that has not played a part in Flandrian cycling history and culture in some way.

Flanders is famous for its farm roads, cobbled hills, frites and beer and this episode Lionel meets former riders, journalists and cycling fans as he seeks to discover what it is that cements the relationship between the people and bike racing.

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