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“Wilco is on the right path. He has improved greatly since the Brabantse Pijl. Paul is doing well and in fact, the whole team in starting to do better.”

Photo: Sirotti

BERT JAN LINDEMAN

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BRAM TANKINK

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JOS VAN EMDEN

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LAURENS TEN DAM

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LIÈGE - BASTOGNE - LIÈGE

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MIKE TEUNISSEN

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NICK VAN DER LIJKE

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PAUL MARTENS

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TEAM JUMBO-VISMA

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WILCO KELDERMAN

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23.04.2015 @ 16:19 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Team LottoNL-Jumbo wants to keep the upward trend going in Sunday’s 101st edition of Liège-Bastogne-Liège. Sports Director Merijn Zeeman is counting on a strong team spirit and leaders Wilco Kelderman and Paul Martens in Wallonia, Belgium.
 
Kelderman feels stronger after improving over the past week. After illness and a 59th place in Brabantse Pijl, he was able to attack in the final kilometres of Sunday’s Amstel Gold Race. On Wednesday, he finished tenth in La Flèche Wallonne.
 
“Liège is a great race and I think it suits me with those longer climbs,” said the Dutchman.
 
“I hope to repeat my performance of Wednesday, but Liège is a long race and for me, it’s the first time. I’m curious and excited.”
 

Kelderman will appear at the start in Liège well-prepared, despite the fact that he will make his debut in La Doyenne.
 
“I’m going to watch last year’s race and on Friday, we’ll recon the final kilometres and climbs. Merijn Zeeman always gives us a fair amount of homework, as well: some videos and a Google Maps version of the course.”
 

Paul Martens hit the tarmac in the final kilometres of La Flèche Wallonne, but doesn’t expect that his spill will affect him in Liège-Bastogne-Liège.
 
“The damage is not too bad. I had some pain, but I was able to shake it off during the remainder of the race,” Martens said.
 
“The real damage was the fact that I wasn’t able to get in the mix for a result.”

 

Martens hopes to bounce back on Sunday, but knows that Liège doesn’t really suit his characteristics.
 
“The past few classics fit my chances better. For a good result in Liège, I need to have a good day and race at my limit,” Martens explained.
 
“Liège is an honest race, it’s mainly about having good legs. It’s crucial for me to digest the long climbs properly if I want to bag a result. If I’m fit in the final, I know I can count on my sprint. The last few races, my kick wasn’t there, but that was understandable because of illness and injuries.

 

“I’m on the right track, though. I assume that I’ll be on my good level. Where I’m going to end up is difficult to estimate.”
 

Sports Director Merijn Zeeman saw encouraging signs in La Flèche Wallonne. “Wilco is on the right path. He has improved greatly since the Brabantse Pijl. Paul is doing well and in fact, the whole team in starting to do better.”
 
“Liege is perhaps the toughest classic of the season with all its climbing metres,” Zeeman said.
 
“It’s going to be a difficult task. We have to make sure that we’re up there again. We want to show ourselves in the final kilometres. We’re going to do that with aggression and race smarts. It all starts with spirit and motivation. The task for the team is to support our leaders for as long as possible.”
 
Zeeman was pleasantly surprised by Laurens ten Dam in La Flèche Wallonne. “Laurens hasn’t really been able to train intensively because of his broken ribs, but despite that he was able to drop off Robert Gesink and Wilco at the front of the pack at the foot of the penultimate climb on Wednesday in Flèche.”
 
Team line-up:
Jos van Emden, Laurens ten Dam, Wilco Kelderman, Nick van der Lijke, Bert-Jan Lindeman, Paul Martens, Bram Tankink & Mike Teunissen.

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