Astana – Premier Tech set for the second Monument of the season
After a tough week of racing on the cobbles in Belgium, the Kazakh – Canadian squad will line up with the same rider roster at Tour of Flanders as it did most recently at Dwars Door Vlaanderen.
Sports Director Steve Bauer, who guided the team through the first part of the Belgian Classics, understands the challenge that lays ahead.
‘’Through the first part of the Belgian Classics we encouraged the riders to be aggressive early and put a rider in the breakaway. Tour of Flanders is an incredible Monument and a privilege for any athlete to have the opportunity to race. We know we are not lining up with a favourite so we need to be aggressive and put someone in the breakaway. We will continue to strive for improvement from the previous races this past week, however, some minor bronchial and nasal infections have limited some of our riders’ typical capacities. These few days of recuperation are welcome and we all look forward to an exciting race on Sunday.’’
The Tour of Flanders, or Ronde Van Vlaanderen, will cover 264 kilometres from Antwerp to Oudenaarde with 17 cobbled sections like the Paterberg or Oude Kwaremont.
Canadian Hugo Houle, is looking to put in a good performance on the historic race on Sunday.
‘’It was not an easy week here for us. I couldn’t take part in De Panne due to a little cold and started then slowly going back into race mode. But I am not back there were I wanted to be. However, I want to give my best on Sunday. Tour of Flanders is a historic and amazing race with so much history and huge names who have won before. Finishing there with a good result would be great.’’
Ronde van Vlaanderen (April 4)
Rider roster: Yevgeniy Fedorov, Yevgeniy Gidich, Dmitriy Gruzdev, Hugo Houle, Benjamin Perry, Nikita Stalnov, Artyom Zakharov.
Sports Directors: Steve Bauer, Stefano Zanini, Dmitriy Muravyev.
Race information: https://www.rondevanvlaanderen.be/nl/rvv/elite-mannen