The Ardennes Classics get underway this weekend with the Amstel Gold Race set to run its course on Sunday, 19 April. MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung will take to the start of the 258km UCI World Tour event with high ambitions.
It will be the first time our African team compete in Netherlands most premier cycling event and we sure hope to leave our mark on this great, traditional race. The route which includes 34 noted climbs, totalling over 4000m of ascent ensures that only the strongest riders will be in contention for the win. None of the climbs could really be categorized as all that long, but the steepness of the gradients will see your powerful and explosive climbers come to the fore.
Team MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung will take to the start with Kristian Sbaragli, Serge Pauwels, Youcef Reguiui, Jacques Janse van Rensburg, Daniel Teklehaimanot, Matt Goss, Johann van Zyl and Songezo Jim making up our roster. It will also be a special day for sport director, Michel Cornelisse as we race in his home country for the first time this year.
Kristian and Serge are coming off strong rides at Wednesday’s Brabantse Pijl and both riders hope to be key figures in the finale on Sunday. Jacques will hope to continue with his excellent early season string of performances as he targets the Ardennes week of classics too. With 3 riders hungry for results and a strong team of support riders, MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung hope to show its stripes at the head of the Amstel Gold Race this Sunday.
Jacques Janse van Rensburg – Rider
I am really excited to be racing the Ardennes classics and I really hope to get a good result in either Amstel Gold, Fleche or Liege if luck is on my side. I think my strengths on the short to medium length climbs are well suited to the Ardennes classics. These races will be my last few in Europe before taking a short break after a successful first part of my season.
Michel Cornelisse – Sport Director
It is really special for me to be going to Holland’s most important race of the year with the team. It will be great for MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung to show off our colours in my home country this weekend and with our in-form riders I am hoping we can play a role in the end result.