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“We want to finish as high up as possible in the overall with George Bennett and Bert-Jan Lindeman. We’ll see how far they can go. With all the Australian cyclists lining up in the race, it’s going to be a good challenge.&...

BARRY MARKUS

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BERT JAN LINDEMAN

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GEORGE BENNETT

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MAARTEN TJALLINGII

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MARTIJN KEIZER

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TEAM JUMBO-VISMA

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TOUR DOWN UNDER

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14.01.2015 @ 18:29 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Team LottoNL-Jumbo’s cycling team will make its debut in Australia next week. From January 20 to 25, the team in yellow and black will race the Tour Down Under. On January 18, the race kicks off with the People’s Choice Classic criterium.

“The guys are excited,” Sports Director Frans Maassen said from Adelaide. “They are eager to start the new LottoNL-Jumbo era.

“We want to finish as high up as possible in the overall with George Bennett and Bert-Jan Lindeman. We’ll see how far they can go. With all the Australian cyclists lining up in the race, it’s going to be a good challenge.”

George Bennett was the first rider to wear the new Team LottoNL-Jumbo kit in competition. On Sunday, the 24-year-old Kiwi finished fifth on New Zealand’s national road race.

“I was isolated there,” Bennett said. “In the Tour Down Under, we race with a good group of riders, so I think more should be possible. I’m really excited and I’m looking forward to it.”

Bennett ended up 15th overall in the Tour Down Under two years ago. “This year, I’m aiming for a top ten spot. That’s a nice goal, although I secretly dream of top five. I need to take my chances and fight for time bonuses. It always comes down to seconds here.

“The race doesn’t completely suit my characteristics, but some things are in my favour. I do not suffer from a jet lag and I’m used to the heat. I have already gained some rhythm and besides, this race is like a home race to me.”

Just like Bennett, Bert-Jan Lindeman joined Team LottoNL-Jumbo this winter. “For me, it means a lot that I immediately get to ride a WorldTour race. This shows that the team has a lot of confidence in me. I’m very happy with that,” said Lindeman.

“The race will be decided in the hills. I hope that my form is good enough to compete with the best riders. In the run-up to those moments, I’m going to try and save as much energy as possible.”

Team line-up:
George Bennett, Rick Flens, Martijn Keizer, Bert-Jan Lindeman, Barry Markus, Timo Roosen and Maarten Tjallingii.

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