There was Walter Bénéteau, winner in 2000, who did it again in 2003 and even got back on the podium for a third time thanks to his second place in 2006. “Alexis Gougeard was also a runner who was still expected,” recalls Yann Botrel , member of the Buckles of Aulne organization in charge of the sporting part in particular. Winner in 2016, already under the colors of AG2R La Mondiale, the one who will join B & B Hotels next season achieved a hell of a number, three years later, to win too a double in the 2019 edition.
“But there is Romain Feillu and his gloves”, breathes Yann Botrel, very happy to tell the anecdote. “He had gloves with the inscription ‘Vive Châteaulin’ on, he remembers. A year before, Romain had won his first professional victory on the Buckles. In 2008, he had therefore decided to put on this pair of gloves, except that it had rained that day and he had to take them off. He won for the second time in a row and he thought about putting them back when he came to the podium. Romain, he has become an emblematic rider for Châteaulin ”.
Belgian Johan Coonen (Unibet) won in 2006. “Nobody expected it, it was a surprise”. In 2018, Kévin Le Cunff (Saint-Michel Auber 93) surprised Arthur Vichot and Guillaume Martin to win. “I made a Jakin! He exclaimed after the arrival. The fact is that, three years earlier, the Estonian of the team… Auber 93 – that cannot be invented – had bluffed everyone in Châteaulin. But the most surprising victory is perhaps that of Jean-Luc Delpech. Not because of the winner, but because he was ahead of… two of his teammates from Bretagne Schuller, Laurent Pichon and Romain Hardy! A formidable hat-trick for the Breton team.
It will be only a few centimeters away! After Romain Feillu’s victories in 2007 and 2008, the Agritubel team won the Alder Loops for the third time in a row in 2009 thanks to Maxime Bouet, now at Arkéa-Samsic. The young promise of French cycling had made his burst of speed speak to overtake Anthony Roux (FDJ).
After the cancellation of the 2020 edition for the reasons we know, here is the return of the Alder Loops. At the start of the event, many Britons will hope to raise their arms at the end of the 177.6 km. Starting with Laurent Pichon (Arkéa-Samsic): four times on the podium, but never a winner! Yann Botrel is betting on another Finistère: Valentin Madouas. “When you see the work he did for Alaphilippe at the world championships … He is not often the leader of his team, there it would be good if it was him”. Answer Sunday on the strokes of 5 p.m.
The Alder Buckles winners
1999: Claude Lamour (Cofidis)
2000: Walter Bénéteau (Hello)
2001: Patrice Halgand (Jean Delatour)
2002: Christopher Jenner (Crédit Agricole)
2003: Walter Bénéteau (Brioches La Boulangère)
2004: Frédéric Finot (RAGT)
2005: Not contested for financial reasons
2006: Johan Coonen (Unibet)
2007: Romain Feillu (Agritubel)
2008: Romain Feillu (Agritubel)
2009: Maxime Bouet (Agritubel)
2010: Jean-Luc Delpech (Bretagne Schuller)
2011: Martijn Keizel (Vacansoleil DCM)
2012: Sébastien Hinault (AG2R La Mondiale)
2013: Mathieu Ladagnous (FDJ)
2014: Alexis Gougeard (AG2R La Mondiale)
2015: Alo Jakin (Auber 93)
2016: Samuel Dumoulin (AG2R La Mondiale)
2017: Odd Christian Eiking (FDJ)
2018: Kévin Le Cunff (Saint-Michel Auber 93)
2019: Alexis Gougeard (AG2R La Mondiale)
2020: Not contested due to pandemic