Etixx – Quick-Step to Belgium Tour
A solid and well-rounded 8-man outfit capable of leaving its stamp on the race will line up in Beveren, on Wednesday.
A technical prologue, two days for the fast men of the bunch and two for the Classics specialists, who'll tackle the punishing climbs of the Ardennes, as well as some well-known cobbled sections which can create chaos in the peloton – this is the course designed by the organizers for the 86th edition of the Belgium Tour. Add to it the Golden Kilometer, which is going to see the riders fight for bonus seconds in every road stage at three intermediate sprints which will take place within 1000 meters at the 25-km to go mark, and you get a mouth-watering race.
The only rider to have won the overall classification on three occasions (2012-2014), Tony Martin returns to competition for the first time since May 1st, his previous race being Rund um den Finanzplatz Eschborn-Frankfurt, where he helped Maximiliano Richeze finish on the podium. The German powerhouse, who at the Belgium Tour will kick-off the second part of his season, will be joined by a strong and experienced squad, which contains Laurens De Plus, Iljo Keisse, Yves Lampaert, Niki Terpstra, Guillaume Van Keirsbulck, Stijn Vandenbergh and Julien Vermote.
Photo credit: ©Tim De Waele