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“We have more than one leading man in our team, but I believe that each rider will get in a situation where he can play his part of importance. Sep [Vanmarcke], Jan [Bakelants], Tim and I will have to be alert if the big formations tr...

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JELLE VANENDERT

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LOTTO SOUDAL

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TONY GALLOPIN

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WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS

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27.09.2014 @ 16:07 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Lotto Belisol will have six riders at the start of the World Championships road race. Two of their riders, Jelle Vanendert and Tony Gallopin, took the time to share their thoughts on the eve of the event.

 

Six Lotto Belisol riders will be at the starting grid for the world championships road cycling on Sunday: two Belgians, a Frenchman, a German, an Australian and a New Zealander. Each one with another goal, this one time serving their country instead of the Lotto Belisol team. 
 
In the Belgian selection consisting of nine riders, there are places for Jelle Vanendert and Tim Wellens. The possibility to go for their own chances is rather small. The Belgian selection is strong in the depth, with leading riders like Boonen, Gilbert and Van Avermaet. The Frendh selection is another story. With Bouhanni they have a fast sprinter and Barguil and Chavanel are the strong punchers in the team. But also Tony Gallopin will get his chance. The Frenchman has prepared himself for the world championships for a long time and the route should suit him.
 
André Greipel makes part of the German selection. John Degenkolb is basically the leading man of the country. But what if Degenkolb isn’t fit after his visit to the hospital and there is yet a bunch sprint?

 

Adam Hansen defends the Australian flag. With Matthews and Gerrans, the Aussies could have two protagonists in the race. New Zealand can take three riders to the start and they have chosen for Bauer, Bennett and the experienced Greg Henderson.
 
“We arrived Tuesday after a long travel day," Vanendert said. "Wednesday we had a long five hour and half training. Thursday and Friday we left together but everyone has done his own training kilometers, which suited oneself. Depending on habits and races of the last past weeks, everyone loves to train in a personal and specific way. There was no need for a real acquaintance. All riders are professional for several years and already raced with or against each other in finals of big races.
 
“The route and tactics are matters which people chitchat about. It’s a pretty fast route, the climbs are not that steep, but the distance and the altitude meters could decimate the peloton. A race which stays steady for a long time is always in the advantage of the quick riders. But countries like Spain and Italy have advantage with an early open race. France but also Belgium have got the right riders for both situations.
 
“We have more than one leading man in our team, but I believe that each rider will get in a situation where he can play his part of importance. Sep [Vanmarcke], Jan [Bakelants], Tim and I will have to be alert if the big formations try to break up the race in the final. I think Gerrans and Valverde are the favourites, because they have a chance to win in every race circumstance. Degenkolb and Kristoff can be dangerous if there is a bunch sprint."
 
“If I can be world champion? Yes, just like every other rider who starts this race," Gallopin said. "My role in the French selection will come down to being one of the protected riders and get chances to go my own way. Racing in laps is always something special and it’s pretty hard to predict whether a puncher or a sprinter will be victorious. It’s in our favour to have different types of riders at our disposal. The distance makes this race a part of the classic races, and I think that the decision will be on the last climb. For the remainder it will be a race by elimination, like every year.


“Indeed, the world championship has been running through my mind for quite a long time. At the beginning of this year I already talked about it, among others with the national coach, who said the route could suit for me. Lotto Belisol has also offered me the opportunity to prepare myself for this race. The ideal situation? Joining a small group with 10k to the finish."

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