We have selected a powerful, experienced squad for Gent-Wevelgem in Flanders Fields that features two former winners of the race.
Edvald Boasson Hagen (2009) and Bernie Eisel (2010) earn starting berths for Sunday’s race which runs to just over 250km.
Giacomo Nizzolo is back in our starting lineup and will be relying on the likes of Reinardt Janse van Rensburg to position him for the sprint if the race finish comes to that.
And our team has further cards to play with the likes of Michael Valgren and Boasson Hagen after they raced at Friday’s E3 Binckbank Classic after some time away.
The hugely experienced trio of Julien Vermote, Lars Bak and Eisel will play a key role in the positioning of our team particularly in light of expectations of a fair amount of wind on the day.
The final climb over the Kemmelberg has often been a prominent moment followed by riding through the iconic Menin Gate in the town of Ypres, with around 20km to go until the finish line.
He said it…
“We have Bernie Eisel and Edvald Boasson Hagen who have both won this race before so that’s a big plus, certainly.
“It’s always been a big classic but now the distance is like a real Classic, 250km and with the “Plugstreets”, for the third year now.
“It seems that it’s going to be dry but that area is always wind, and that’s also in the prediction, so it’s a sprinter classic but with the “Plugstreet”, the parcours and at this distance, it’s really still a super-hard race. It could also be a small group coming to the finish which we’ve seen that before because there’s a lot of wind. So we’re going to have to keep fighting to have a good position in the front the whole day, the crucial point is always on the (final) back side of the Kemmel.
“We saw in the last two years that the group that goes from there stays at the front, I think that last year there were only around 30 guys in the first group. It’s about being in the front, if there’s crosswinds then that’s right from the start, but definitely the final time at the Kemmel will be decisive.
“We are all fresh and motivated, we’ll see what plays out from there and then race accordingly.” – Lars Bak