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Slagter, Mollema, Ten Dam, Gesink, Kelderman, Hoogerland, Poels, Dumoulin and Weening selected to form a very strong team on climbers for the hilly circuit in Florence

Photo: Sirotti

BAUKE MOLLEMA

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JOHNNY HOOGERLAND

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LAURENS TEN DAM

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LIEUWE WESTRA

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NIKI TERPSTRA

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PIETER WEENING

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ROBERT GESINK

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TOM DUMOULIN

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TOM-JELTE SLAGTER

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WILCO KELDERMAN

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WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS

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03.09.2013 @ 14:10 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

The Netherlands has become the first major nation to select its team for the world championships. As expected, the roster is dominated by climbers well-suited to the hilly course in Florence.

 

This year's world championships course has been described as the hardest since the hardest since the one used in Colombia for the 1995 edition. A host of the world's best climbers see it as a genuine opportunity to fight for the rainbow jersey and have made the big one-day race the centrepiece of their autumn season.

 

It's no different for the many Dutch climbers and the Benelux country has selected a roster which is loaded with climbing talent. A good season has allowed the country to line up the maximum of 9 riders and all spots have been taken by riders who excel on the ascents.

 

As expected, Belkin dominates the roster with no less than 5 riders coming from the biggest Dutch team. The captain is likely to be Bauke Mollema who is not only a good climber but also has a fast sprint and has performed well in hilly classics in the past. He is currently racing the Vuelta a Espana where a below-par performance has seen him out his GC ambitions on hold, instead using the remainder of the event to prepare for the worlds.

 

He will join forces with fellow grand tour stars Robert Gesink and Laurens Ten Dam whose characteristics are more those of a pure climber while young talents Wilco Kelderman and Tom-Jelte Slagter complete the Belkin contingent. The latter are both well-suited to the Ardennes classics and should be able to shine on a course like the one in Florence.

 

Two Vacansoleil riders have made it onto the roster. Wout Poels who recently signed a contract with Omega Pharma-Quick Step, will hope that his legs have come around in time for the big event as he is currently struggling in the Vuelta. His teammate Johnny Hoogerland is a perennial attacker who won his national championship title on a tough course on home soil.

 

The team is completed by Tom Dumoulin who recently finished 2nd in the Eneco Tour and Orica-GreenEDGE climber Pieter Weening who has had an outstanding season and recently won the Tour de Pologne.

 

For the time trial, the top 2 from the national championships have been selected. Lieuwe Westra and Niki Terpstra will ride the individual event which is held on a mostly flat course and the former is certainly a solid podium candidate.

 

The time trial will take place on September 25 while the road race will be held four days later.

 

The Netherlands for the world championships road race

Robert Gesink, Laurens Ten Dam, Bauke Mollema, Wilco Kelderman, Tom-Jelte Slagter, Johnny Hoogerland, Wout Poels, Tom Dumoulin and Pieter Weening

 

The Netherlands for the world championships time trial

Lieuwe Westra and Niki Terpstra

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