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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Back to news and opinion index page for links to archived stories | Commentary | Our YouTube page
2017 Tour de France | 2017 Giro d'Italia

The caterpillar does all the work and the butterfly gets all the publicity. - George Carlin

Current racing:

Latest completed racing:


Team Sunweb's upcoming racing

Sunweb sent me this preview:

PICCOLO GIRO DI LOMBARDIA (UCI 1.2)

On October 1, Development Team Sunweb will line-up at the U23 Tour of Lombardy in Italy, as the season almost comes to a close for the young riders. With the WorldTour Lombardia race just around the corner, the U23 riders have a chance to test themselves on a very similar parcours.

Team Sunweb come to the race with a balanced line-up and options to push for the breakaways, as well as riders to push far into the finale in a strong position to compete for a result at the end of the race. The 174.7km parcours takes in the Madonna del Ghisallo climb after 112km, where the race could spark into action behind an early breakaway. From here the riders race down to the base of the next climb, Colle Brianna, falling at 150km. One short, sharp ascent then remains before the finish in Oggiono.

"For Lombardia we have a team to go for the breaks and then others to save for later in the final," explained Team Sunweb coach Tom Veelers (NED). "Felix [Gall], Maxime [Gressier] and Max [Kanter] will be looking to make the early breaks. The guys not at the front of the race will also be able to support the other three towards the final, so we're looking for a strong team effort."

RACE: Piccolo Giro di Lombardia (1.2)

DATE: 01/10/2017

COACH: Tom Veelers (NED)

LINE-UP
Felix Gall (AUT)
Maxime Gressier (FRA)
Max Kanter (GER)
Jarno Mobach (NED)
Martin Salmon (GER)
Florian Stork (GER) 

SPARKASSEN MÜNSTERLAND GIRO (UCI 1.HC)

Team Sunweb riders return to their team jerseys next week as defending champions on home soil after racing for their respective nations at the World Championships last weekend. The one-day Münsterland Giro awaits, on a largely flat course that suits the sprinters.

With Phil Bauhaus (GER), the team has one of the fastest finishers in the bunch here at Münsterland Giro and the team will look to set him up in the best position to finish off the job. Road captain Roy Curvers (NED) is a part of the strong and experienced, mainly German line-up, as well as Lennard Kämna (GER) fresh from his silver medal at the U23 World Championships.

Lennard Kamna

Lennard Kamna will be on the line at the Münsterland Giro

Team Sunweb coach Marc Reef (NED) said ahead of the race: "The biggest part of our team for the Münsterland Giro is German and they will bring their good shape from the Worlds, La Vuelta and Houtland. It is a mainly flat course between Wadersloh and Münster and the race will likely end up in a bunch sprint, and that is also what we will target. With Phil we have a rider who can finish it off, we have a strong lead-out with Max, Ramon and Nikias, and we also have a very experienced team to guide him into the last few hundred metres of the race."

RACE: Sparkassen Münsterland Giro (1.HC)

DATE: 03/10/2017

COACH: Marc Reef (NED)

LINE-UP MEN
Nikias Arndt (GER)
Phil Bauhaus (GER)
Roy Curvers (NED)
Johannes Fröhlinger (GER)
Lennard Kämna (GER)
Ramon Sinkeldam (NED)
Albert Timmer (NED)
Max Walscheid (GER) 

TRE VALLI VARESINE (UCI 1.HC)

Team Sunweb head to Italy this week for the first of a trio of races, with the one-day Tre Valli Varesine offering a 192.9km parcours suited to the puncheurs. The team brings a strong line-up ready to fight for the breaks and to be in the best position possible with options long into the finale.

Within the line-up is the new World Time Trial Champion, Tom Dumoulin (NED), alongside the bronze medallist at the World Championships Road Race, Michael Matthews (AUS), and fourth at La Vuelta, Wilco Kelderman (NED). With strong riders capable of supporting both on the flats and the climbs, the team will look to get the late season Italian campaign off to a strong start.

The undulating parcours takes the riders on a 77km opening loop, with some climbing tests falling after around 60km, before hitting the finishing circuit around Varese where the road climbs twice, the latter time gradually towards the finish line in the final kilometres.

Team Sunweb coach Aike Visbeek (NED) gave his thoughts ahead of the race: "It's an exciting race with a tough, demanding finishing circuit. There's a big chance for a really tough final with small groups going up the road, but we can equally see a small group come into the finish for a sprint.

"We have a good group for both scenarios with guys like Wilco, Warren [Barguil] and Tom to be offensive and go with the moves; then we have Michael as a weapon for if the race looks like it will come back for a small group finish. So we have two very good options for the race and look forward to being involved."

RACE: Tre Valli Varesine (1.HC)

DATE: 03/10/2017

COACH: Aike Visbeek (NED)

Lawrence Naesen rides for Lotto-Soudal in 2018 and 2019

The team sent me this report:

In 2018 and 2019 Lawrence Naesen will ride in the shirt of Lotto Soudal. The 25-year-old Belgian was part of WB Veranclassic Aqua Protect this year and in June he conquered a nice third place in Ride Bruges, behind Wout Van Aert and Mathieu van der Poel. Naesen won three national races this year. Lawrence is the younger brother of Belgian champion Oliver Naesen.

Lawrence Naesen: “It’s a dream for each sportsman to perform on the highest level. That dream is coming true for me and that’s wonderful. It’s going fast, because I only started cycling when I was twenty. It was my brother who instigated me to get on the bike and I immediately enjoyed it. Oliver also helped me to find my first team. My brother played an important role in the fact that I have become a cyclist. I have deliberately chosen not to ride with him in the same team though. I want to have my own pro career.”

“There are several reasons why I wanted to sign a contract with Lotto Soudal. Riding in a Belgian team is special for a Belgian rider. I also know several riders in the team and that will help me to set this new step.”

“Next season, I will be able to learn a lot in the races at the highest level. The past years I set some big steps and I want to keep on working to make progress. I can survive tough races and I’m fast at the finish. I have proven that I can play along for victory in 1.1 races and I want to show that next year too. It’s a motivation to do as good as Oliver and to even do better. For the spectators it is nice to see us battle against each other.”

Marc Sergeant, sports manager Lotto Soudal: “Lawrence hasn’t been racing that long, but he has already shown he has guts. And let that be something we missed in the first part of this season. We hope that someone like Lawrence can give a boost to the team. Of course we will give him sufficient time to grow. He has the capabilities to become a valuable WorldTour rider. He nor we know his limits, but we didn’t want to let him slip through our fingers. Of all riders that weren’t part of the World Tour the past season, he is one of the riders who has shown the most potential. I am very glad to have him in our team next year. First of all to reinforce our team in the spring, but Lawrence is capable of riding a very broad programme and we’ll see where that takes us together.”


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