The E3 Harelbeke gets underway today and serves as the first World Tour cobbled classic of the year. Team MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung will be lining-up with intentions of being a prominent fixture throughout the race.
At 218km long, and a route that includes most of the famed Helingens and cobbles sectors in the West Flanders region, today’s race could be considered as a mini Ronde van Vlaanderen. This stern test ensures that all the top classics riders will be present at today’s race.
Team MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung will rally around Edvald Boasson Hagen, Tyler Farrar and Gerald Ciolek today with Reinardt Janse van Rensburg, Kristian Sbaragli, Youcef Reguigui, Matt Brammeier and Nic Dougall strengthening the arsenal of our African team.
Today also marks the debut appearance for Nic in a World Tour event. After graduating from the World Cycling Centre MTN-Qhubeka feeder team into the MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung pro team last year, this is another significant step for Nic but more so for the development of cycling in Africa.
African fans will be able to catch all the action live on SuperSport 7 today from 16:00.
Nic Dougall – Rider
I am happy to be starting my first World Tour race today. The Dwars Door Vlaanderen was a real eye opener to my first proper race in this region but I am excited for today. I will look to support and aid my team as best I can while taking in each kilometer to gain as much experience as possible. We have some real contenders for the classics in our team so I am fortunate to be learning from the best.