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"I've always done well in this race. This year, too, we'll be lining up for the start with the ambition to do well, to achieve prestigious results. I really like the Tour of Qatar, it's a race that is perfectly suited to my...

Photo: OPQS / Tim De Waele

ANDREW FENN

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GERT STEEGMANS

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GUILLAUME VAN KEIRSBULCK

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ILJO KEISSE

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NIKI TERPSTRA

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NIKOLAS MAES

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QUICK-STEP - ALPHA VINYL

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STIJN VANDENBERGH

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TOUR OF QATAR

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06.02.2014 @ 21:29 Posted by Andy Pedersen

Omega Pharma - Quickstep Cycling Team has announced the squad, which will represent the team in Tour of Qatar. Captain of the team will be Tom Boonen, the record holder of most victories with four overall GC victories. Besides that he has 20 stage wins in the race.

 

The race means a lot for the experienced Belgian, who thinks he has started his season very well in the Tour de San Luis. He wants to do well in the race and it is a race, which suits him well.

 

"After the Tour de San Luis, in which I did some good work, The Tour of Qatar will be another important step in the first part of my season," Boonen explains to the OPQS website. "I've always done well in this race. This year, too, we'll be lining up for the start with the ambition to do well, to achieve prestigious results. I really like the Tour of Qatar, it's a race that is perfectly suited to my strengths. The wind is a fundamental factor in this competition; whether you want to or not, it forces you to always try to stay out in front and never underestimate any racing situation. Luckily, pedalling in the wind is one of the things OPQS excels in. I'm really looking forward to this race."

 

Sport Director Wilfried Peeters says the wind as usual will play a big role in the dessert race. Many of the stages will be driven in areas with no more than sand.

 

"The Tour of Qatar is a race that is unique in its class, where the wind rules," explains Sport Director Wilfried Peeters. "Normally, the stages end up in tight final sprints with just a few riders. They are unusual sprints because after hours of battling the winds, riders come in to the sprint very tired. We are lining up for the start with a squad selected for this type of route. It will be headed by Boonen but athletes like Nikolas Maes and Niki Terpstra can also do well. There will also be a 10.9 km time trial to be ridden on a normal road bike in which Niki could figure prominently. We are setting out with the desire and ambition to come back with a good result."

 

OPQS line-up for Tour of Qatar: Andrew Fenn, Gert Steegmans, Guillaume Van Keirsbulck, Iljo Keisse, Niki Terpstra, Nikolas Maes, Stjin Vandenbergh and Tom Boonen.

 

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