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"I think I already proved what I’m capable of in the past seven years with this team; on the other hand, some years were defined with bad luck. And 2015 was such a year. But I’m not ready to quit cycling."

Photo: Lotto Soudal

GREGORY HENDERSON

RIDER PROFILE
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NEWS

JELLE VANENDERT

RIDER PROFILE
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NEWS

LOTTO SOUDAL

TEAM PROFILE
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NEWS
14.10.2015 @ 06:00 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Also next year Greg Henderson and Jelle Vanendert will ride in the colours of Lotto Soudal. Both riders signed a new agreement for one year. For the 39-year-old New-Zealander, it will be his fifth year in the team. Jelle Vanendert (30) is part of this team since 2009.

 

“With Greg Henderson and Jelle Vanendert, we choose for WorldTour experience and their specific qualities in the team," manager Marc Sergeant said. "Since 2012 Greg is the regulator and last man of André Greipel’s sprint train; together they were already successful. Despite his age, Henderson is someone you can count on. Furthermore, he helps the younger riders by giving them advice and loves playing his lead-out role for Jens Debusschere and other sprinters. He reads the race, redirects when necessary and is a team player. Recently, at the World Championships team time trial, Henderson was one of the key riders.

 

“Jelle Vanendert had a rather unlucky season. He had a lot of bad luck in the period Amstel/Flèche Wallonne/Liège-Bastogne-Liège, so he couldn’t repeat his performances of 2011, 2012 and 2014. Jelle is somebody who can focus on a specific race or period and then can get the maximum out of his capacities. If the shape is just not enough, or the luck isn’t there, it’s a disadvantage, because these periods of top shape pass by quickly. Nevertheless, we see him as a valuable member of the team. Which role that shall be, will depend on his shape. In the past, he showed that he could also ride for someone else, like he did for Phillipe Gilbert.”

 

“For me, it isn’t a surprise that I am still in the peloton on my fortieth birthday, even if I will be an exception in the team," Henderson said. "The main factor is motivation, I’m still very motivated to be ready when I need to be in top shape. Due to my crash in the third stage during the recent Tour de France, I couldn’t play the role I wanted. After Hamburg, I went on an altitude training camp in Colorado together with my family to prepare myself for the World Championships team time trial. We really focussed on it, with a seventh place as result. I will try to be in the best possible shape when I’m in competition to share my experience with the other riders. 2015 was a nice season, but I hope that we can do the same next year.”

 

“Of course I’m happy to stay with Lotto Soudal. I feel comfortable in this team, otherwise I wouldn’t stay," Vanendert said. "It’s true that the contract extension lasted a bit longer than usual, but nowadays teams wait longer and longer before extending the current contracts. It’s a trend from the past years because some teams stopped and there was an oversupply of riders. Then it becomes a problem when you don’t perform as well as expected.

 

"I think I already proved what I’m capable of in the past seven years with this team; on the other hand, some years were defined with bad luck. And 2015 was such a year. But I’m not ready to quit cycling and will be motivated to be at my best again in 2016.”

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