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"We will see what we can do. Our goal is to try and win a stage and try to get a good classification with riders like Jan Bakelants and Zdenek Stybar, to try and get a few WorldTour points," Peeters says

Photo: OPQS / Tim De Waele

ALESSANDRO PETACCHI

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ANDREW FENN

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DECEUNINCK - QUICK-STEP

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DRIEDAAGSE VAN WEST-VLAANDEREN

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GERT STEEGMANS

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GIANNI MEERSMAN

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GUILLAUME VAN KEIRSBULCK

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ILJO KEISSE

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JAN BAKELANTS

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JULIAN ALAPHILIPPE

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JULIEN VERMOTE

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MARK CAVENDISH

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MARK RENSHAW

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MARTIN VELITS

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MATTEO TRENTIN

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MICHAL GOLAS

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MICHAL KWIATKOWSKI

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NIKI TERPSTRA

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NIKOLAS MAES

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PARIS - NICE

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RIGOBERTO URAN

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STIJN VANDENBERGH

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STRADE BIANCHE

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THOMAS DE GENDT

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ZDENEK STYBAR

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06.03.2014 @ 16:45 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Omega Pharma-Quick Step prepare for a very busy period and will bring all of their stars in action during the weekend. While Michal Kwiatkowski, Rigoberto Uran, Matteo Trentin, and Michal Golas will lead a team that includes Mark Cavendish on the gravel roads in Sturday's Strade Bianche, Zdenek Stybar and Jan Bakelants will chase GC success and Tom Boonen and Gianni Meersman sprint wins in Paris-Nice. Finally, a team of classics riders and youngsters will try to defend the team's title in the Driedaagse van West-Vlaanderen.

 

Omega Pharma - Quick-Step Cycling Team will be busy this weekend with races in three different countries: Belgium, Italy, and France.

 

The first race is the Belgian race Driedaagse van West-Vlaanderen, from March 7th until March 9th. OPQS has a good tradition at this race, with both stage and overall winners in the past. An OPQS rider won the overall in both 2012 [Julien Vermote] and 2013  [Kristof Vandewalle], and also had a rider in 3rd overall in the 2013 edition [Niki Terpstra].

 

"We have once again a good team, the same as the one that was a protagonist at Le Samyn," Sport Director Rik Van Slycke said. "They are guys who can do well on these Belgian parcours, who are happy to ride there and go for a good result."

 

On Saturday, there will be racing in Italy at Strade Bianche. The 197km race is becoming an important appointment on the race schedule, with teams on the start list from five different continents. It is far from easy, as the race includes 50km of gravel roads broken into 10 segments, including some with five star difficulty.

 

"This is a race that is becoming more and more important in the world of cycling," Sport Director Davide Bramati said. "It's become a kind of Italian Classic. As for OPQS, we are returning after some years of not participating in the race. The parcours has changed, so tomorrow we will recon the last 50km of the race with our guys. We want to have a look and be prepared for the race on Saturday.

 

"It's a very professional race and we have also good riders for this kind of difficult course. Michal Kwiatkowski, Michal Golas, and Matteo Trentin are riders that are used to difficult roads and can be present to try and do well."

F

inally, Sunday is the start of Paris-Nice. The 72nd edition, from March 9th until March 16th, is the first European UCI WorldTour race of the season.

 

"This year's route doesn't present a time trial, so it will probably be a more open race," Sport Director Wilfried Peeters said. "There will be at the beginning a few stages suited for sprinters and riders who can defend themselves on the small climbs. We can count on Tom Boonen and Gianni Meersman for these kinds of races.

 

"Going into the weekend, from Friday into Saturday, it will be more difficult. Stage six is a long stage of 221.5km, and in the final there is the 8.2 kilometer, Category 1 Col de Bourigaille to ascend at kilometer 202.5, followed by the finishing Category 2 climb in Fayence . Even the seventh stage, with several categorized climbs from kilometer 49 to kilometer 131 out of 195.5 kilometers, will be very nervous. We will end the race with a really short 128 kilometer stage, but it is one which includes the Category 1 Col d'Eze late in the race as it is tradition.

 

"We will see what we can do. Our goal is to try and win a stage and try to get a good classification with riders like Jan Bakelants and Zdenek Stybar, to try and get a few WorldTour points."

 

Omega Pharma-Quick Step for Driedaagse van West-Vlaanderen

Iljo Keisse, Andrew Fenn, Thomas De Gendt, Petr Vakoc, Julian Alaphilippe, Martin Velits, Guillaume Van Keirsbulck, and Julien Vermote

 

Omega Pharma-Quick Step for Strade Bianche

Mark Cavendish, Alessandro Petacchi, Mark Renshaw, Michal Kwiatkowski, Michal Golas, Matteo Trentin, Rigoberto Uran, and Wout Poels

 

Omega Pharma-Quick Step for Paris-Nice

Zdenek Stybar, Gianni Meersman, Tom Boonen, Jan Bakelants, Niki Terpstra, Gert Steegmans, Stijn Vandenbergh, and Nikolas Maes

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