Last year Lars Bak finished second in his home race, the Tour of Denmark. This year he returns to win the event as he leads a Lotto Belisol roster mostly made up of sprinters.
Tomorrow a Lotto Belisol selection will stand at the start of the Tour of Denmark. This five-day stage race of the Europe Tour ends on Sunday the 10th of August. Lars Bak finished second last year at only six seconds of winner Wilco Kelderman. The Dane will try to conquer the overall victory this year.
Since the 1st of August three riders have started their traineeship with Lotto Belisol. Tiesj Benoot and Oliver Naesen will make their début in the Tour of Denmark.
For the sprint the team can rely on Kris Boeckmans and Greg Henderson. The New-Zealander had to abandon the Tour de France because of a crash in the fourth stage. Past weekend he made his comeback in the road race at the Commonwealth Games where he was seventh.
The Tour of Denmark consists of six stages. On Saturday there's first a stage of 100 kilometers and in the evening a 15 kilometers long time trial. Each stage ends with a number of local laps, so the riders can explore the finish zone.
Lars Bak will compete against fellow countrymen like Matti Breschel, Jakob Fuglsang and Michael Mørkøv. In the sprints people to watch are among other Gerald Ciolek and Tom Van Asbroeck.
"Last year Lars Bak got second in GC, we aim for the highest podium spot this year," sports director Marc Wauters said. "Lars is very popular in Denmark and is very motivated. In 2013 he lost his chance to win the GC in the time trial and he'll definitely want revenge this year. Of course we'll try to win a stage as well.
"Two trainees are part of the selection: Tiesj Benoot and Oliver Naesen. They certainly get the chance to attack. Apart from them we have our fast guys Kris Boeckmans and Greg Henderson. Hendy has the experience for the lead-out, but can win a stage himself as well like was the case in the Ster ZLM Toer. Boeckmans was already a few times close to the victory this season, he could finally take the win in this race."
"The stages finish on local circuits. The third stage is the hardest with an uphill finish. There guys like Lars Bak will get a chance. The first selection for GC will be made there and then the time trial on Saturday will be decisive."
Selection Lotto Belisol:
Lars Bak, Tiesj Benoot, Kris Boeckmans, Sean De Bie, Greg Henderson, Oliver Naesen, Tosh Van der Sande and Dennis Vanendert.
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