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“Frenchman Tony Gallopin will strive for the win in the GP la Marseillaise. The European cycling season starts with the Challenge Mallorca, but for the participants in Marseille this will be their first race on European soil."

Photo: Lotto Soudal

ETOILE DE BESSÈGES

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GRAND PRIX CYCLISTE LA MARSEILLAISE

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KRIS BOECKMANS

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LOTTO-DSTNY

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MAXIME MONFORT

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PIM LIGTHART

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SANDER ARMEE

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SEAN DE BIE

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TONY GALLOPIN

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TOSH VAN DER SANDE

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VEGARD BREEN

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28.01.2015 @ 13:02 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

On Sunday February 1m the Grand Prix la Marseillaise is being contested, a Europe Tour race. In this first French race of the season the peloton faces three climbs in the second half of the 140 kilometres long race which ends in front of the vélodrome of Marseille.

 

Three days later, Wednesday February 4, the Étoile de Bessèges starts. This is a French five-day stage race which is also part of the Europe Tour. Last year, Tony Gallopin finished seventh in GC. The 45th edition is comparable to the past years: four flat stages with some small climbs along the route and Sunday February 8th a closing time trial of twelve kilometres.

 

 

“Frenchman Tony Gallopin will strive for the win in the GP la Marseillaise," Lotto-Soudal sports director Mario Aerts said. "The European cycling season starts with the Challenge Mallorca, but for the participants in Marseille this will be their first race on European soil. Everybody will be motivated to show themselves so I expect a very fast race, as usual. The wavy route will cause a certain decimation but it’s likely to end with a bunch sprint.

 

“In the Étoile de Bessèges we go for a stage win. The first four stages are traditionally bunch sprints. Tony Gallopin and Kris Boeckmans are fast finishers but also Tosh Van der Sande and Pim Ligthart can finish strongly. Gallopin and Maxime Monfort want to ride for a good result in the overall standings. The GC will be decided in the final stage: the individual time trial. A time trial in which also Sean De Bie can get a good result.”

 

 

It will not only be a new start of the season for the riders. Frederik Willems will go to the French races for the first time as Lotto Soudal sports director.

 

“I’m starting my fourth year as sports director," Aerts said. "So I hope to give him some tips and tricks of the profession. In the GP la Marseillaise we share the same team car. I’m sure things will go well!”

 

Selection Lotto Soudal: 

Sander Armée, Kris Boeckmans, Vegard Breen, Sean De Bie, Tony Gallopin, Pim Ligthart, Maxime Monfort and Tosh Van der Sande.

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