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"I think it will bring lots of new opportunities and the possibility to learn from a very experienced team. One of the reasons I decided on going to an Italian based team is because Italy has become my home away from home."

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LOUIS MEINTJES

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03.09.2015 @ 09:06 Posted by Renaud Breban

The climber of the future comes from South Africa who will be wearing the Blue-Fuchsia-Green colors from 2016. Team Lampre-MERIDA are proud to announce the signing of Louis Meintjes, a rider born in Pretoria (South Africa) on February 21m 1992.

Silver medalist in the 2013 World championships in Florence, the young South African turned professional in 2013, his talent was first noticed when winning both the road race and time trial in the national championships as a junior in 2010, and having ridden in the amateur ranks with both Crabbe in Lot-Benison U23 where he won two titles in the national time trial in 2012-2013 and the road race in 2013 as well as the time trial victory at the Tour of Korea, his debut in a World tour race was Il lombardia in 2013 where he finished 52nd.

2014 was a year of memorable results as he won the national championship road race as well as a stage at the Tour of Mzansi, best young riders jersey at the Tour of Trentino and rode his debut grand tour races at the Vuelta a Espana.


In 2015 Meintjes won both the African Championships road race as well as the best young riders jersey in the Tour of Oman, the 4th stage and overall classification in the Coppi e Bartoli and an impressive 5th place in the 12th stage of the Tour de France. He's 10th in the overall classification of the Vuelta a Espana after 11 stages.

Meintjes having chosen to associate himself with team Lampre-Merida for the next two years is something of great satisfaction for the team, once again recognition for their investment in young talented riders, with him being one of the promising climbers in world cycling for the future.

Confirmation of the South African cyclist for the team roster means having two African riders on the team, together with the Ethiopian national champion Tsgabu Grmay Gebremaryam, and this highlights the fact that the team manager Brent Copeland believes ininvesting in riders from different cultures.

 “I’m really excited to be taking this step up to the WorldTour level with team Lampre-Merida for the next two seasons," he said. "I think it will bring lots of new opportunities and the possibility to learn from a very experienced team. One of the reasons I decided on going to an Italian based team is because Italy has become my home away from home.

"Motivation is super high and I can't wait for 2016, also to tryto give satisfactions to LAMPRE-MERIDA, to team manager Brent Copeland and to Giuseppe Saronni, to the Galbusera family from the Lampre company and to the Merida company: they demonstrated high confidence in my qualities.

"I also have to thank Doug Ryder, MTN- Qhubeka and all the partners who gave me the chance to race the past few years in Europe. Without them I wouldn't be where I am today. It's been a great experience and I really wish the team all the best for the future. The experience with them has left me with great friends and lasting memories".

“Louis is a rider we have always kept a close eye on, we believe in his talent and know that his future career will be one of great value," Brent Copeland, LAMPRE-MERIDA’s team manager, explained. "Meintjes will have his space to grow at Lampre-Merida and with our technical staff’s immense experience in working with young talented riders such as Louis, will certainly contribute to bringing important results to himself and the team.

 

"We believe he is a complete rider and probably one of the most promising GC riders in the peloton for the future, being a natural climber as well as an excellent time trialist. Therefore this is the area where we will be concentrating on working with Louis. I have personally worked with the well educated and respectful Louis in the past and know his ability. Although he has already shown the cycling world what he can do, we believe he still has a huge margin of improvement and this makes it even more exciting for all of us to be working with him in the future."

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