Enzo Wouters leads Lotto-Soudal at Vuelta a San Juan
Jan 18 2018 02:48 am CET

Enzo Wouters leads Lotto-Soudal at Vuelta a San Juan

Lotto Soudal will be in the Vuelta a San Juan for the first time, an opportunity that will be taken to prepare the riders for the spring races.

The Argentinean race will take place from the 21st to the 28th of January, and includes six regular stages and one time trial.

The Belgian team will go to the race with sprinter Enzo Wouters as its main man and the others will support him and will take the chance to prepare for the spring classics. "Four out of the seven stages are sprint stages," said Lotto Soudal's Sports Director Mario Aerts. "Fernando Gaviria will be the man to beat on those occasions. Enzo Wouters is the sprinter in our team. As a neo-pro, he pulled a lot at the head of the bunch last year, after his first race needed to be postponed due to knee surgery.

"When he could have a go of his own at the Tour of Britain in September, he claimed two top ten places. His teammates will try to get him to the finish in the best possible conditions. The sprints in Argentina are often chaotic, then the steering skills of Tosh Van der Sande can come in handy."

The team will not be competing for the General Classification, but Wouters will try to get stage victories. "This is the first race of the year for the riders present and we start without any pressure," Aerts explained. "We want to set some good results with Enzo, but for the others, this race is a preparation for the spring races. A good overall classification isn’t a goal.

"The fifth stage and the time trial will determine the GC. The final climb on stage five isn’t very tough, but at the beginning of the season, such a climb can feel tougher than usual. In the sprint stages, the riders will need to be attentive for echelons, as we often ride through plains."

Lotto Soudal's roster for the Vuelta a San Juan: Tiesj Benoot, Jens Keukeleire, Nikolas Maes, Tosh Van der Sande, Jelle Wallays and Enzo Wouters.
Image: Lotto-Soudal logo



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