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Lotto-Belisol will back their Belgian grand tour captain in the Argentinean race and will have Vanendert on hand for support; Dehaes will focus on the sprints

Photo: Sirotti

FREDERIK WILLEMS

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JELLE VANENDERT

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JURGEN VAN DEN BROECK

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KENNY DE HAES

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LOTTO SOUDAL

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SANDER ARMEE

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TOSH VAN DER SANDE

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TOUR DE SAN LUIS

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03.01.2014 @ 16:52 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Lotto Belisol have unveiled their roster for the Tour de San Luis and will have Jurgen Van Den Broeck back in competition in the Argentinean race after his crash in the 2013 Tour de France. Jelle Vanendert and Sander Armee will provide support in the mountains while Kenny Dehaes will target success in the sprints.

 

Lotto Belisol is preparing themselves for the start of the 2014 season and have selected the roster for their first UCI race of the season, the Tour de San Luis. Held under sunny conditions on a mountainous course, the race offers the climbers on the team a chance to test their form early in the season.

 

The team will be led by Jurgen Van Den Broeck who will do his first race since abandoning the 2013 Tour de France. The Belgian grand tour star suffered a severe knee injury when he crashed in the bunch sprint in Marseille and had to end his season prematurely.

 

Van Den Broeck has now recovered sufficiently to start racing again and he will do sun in Argentina where he also made his 2013 debut. One year ago he finished 5th in the race and he will be keen to improve on that result, having previously stated that he feels better at this time of the year than he has done in the past.

 

In Argentina, he will have the support of Jelle Vanendert who will start a season that he hopes will see him return to his former level. Having endured an illness-plagued 2013, Vanendert is targeting the Ardennes classics but is usually not at his best at the beginning of the season.

 

The third climber on the team is Sander Armee who will make his debut for his new squad after leaving Topsport Vlaanderen in the off-season.

 

The race has three summit finishes and a time trial but also offers three flat stages for the sprinters. Lotto Belisol will back Kenny Dehaes in the bunch sprints, with the Belgian eager to kick off his season in the same splendid fashion he did last year when he won the Trofeo Palma in Mallorca. He will have the support of another fast rider, Tosh van der Sande.

 

The team will be completed by classics specialist Frederik Willems who will play the role of domestique.

 

At the same time, the team has again confirmed its selection for the Tour Down Under which was already announced before Christmas. Andre Greipel will return to his happy hunting ground and will have the support of most of his lead-out train, with Jurgen Roelandts, Marcel Sieberg and Adam Hansen all making the trip to Australia. He will, however, dearly miss his usual lead-out man Greg Henderson who is absent with an injury.

 

Jens Debusschere will also play a role in the sprint train while Olivier Kaisen and neo-pro Stig Broeckx will have the task of chasing down early breakaways.

 

The Tour de San Luis kicks off on January 20, with the Tour Down Under starting one day later. The latter race is preceded by the People's Choice Classic which takes place on January 19.

 

People’s Choice Classic and Tour Down Under:

Stig Broeckx, Jens Debusschere, André Greipel, Adam Hansen, Olivier Kaisen, Jürgen Roelandts and Marcel Sieberg.

 

Tour de San Luis:

Sander Armée, Kenny Dehaes, Jurgen Van den Broeck, Tosh Van der Sande, Jelle Vanendert and Frederik Willems.

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