Lotto Soudal looking for stage wins at Dauphine
Jun 01 2018 01:28 pm CET

Lotto Soudal looking for stage wins at Dauphine
Lotto Soudal looking for stage wins at Dauphine
Image: Lotto Soudal logo

Belgian team Lotto Soudal is set to aim for stage victories at the upcoming edition of the Criterium du Dauphine.

The formation has set its eyes on the prologue with Victor Campenaerts, while Thomas De Gendt will look to get into breakaways. Jens Keukeleire will lead the team in case of mass sprints, although he and other teammates are also free to join breakaways when the possibility arises.

"The Criterium du Dauphine is traditionally a race with a challenging course," said sports director Herman Frison. "It’s a taste of what the riders awaits during the Tour de France.

"This year, the Dauphiné starts with a prologue. With Victor Campenaerts, we have a candidate for the victory in our team. He was already close during the opening time trial in the Giro and he will certainly want to prove himself once again. The prologue is 6.6 kilometres long, which is a little bit shorter than the time trial in Jerusalem. The course is U-shaped and is not that technical. The road to the finish is slightly uphill, but the course should definitely suit Victor.

"Our goal for the Critérium du Dauphiné is to take a stage victory. We will evaluate our position on GC day by day. It is always our ambition to win a stage if we take part in a stage race. The first two stages might end with a sprint, but the rest of the week is very challenging. We will play the card of Jens Keukeleire when it comes down to a sprint."

"Almost every stage offers an opportunity for us," Frison added. "Riders like Tiesj Benoot, Tomasz Marczynski and Jelle Wallays could join the breakaway during the hard stages and are able to finish it off in the end. Jens Keukeleire won’t only be an asset for the possible sprints. If he joins a large breakaway, he definitely has a chance of winning. If Jelle Vanendert could slip into the breakaway during the stages with a summit finish, he also has a considerable chance to win. And of course, Thomas De Gendt has the experience to finish off a breakaway."

The Lotto Soudal line-up for the Criterium du Dauphine (June 3-10):

Tiesj Benoot
Victor Campenaerts
Thomas De Gendt
Jens Keukeleire
Tomasz Marczynski
Jelle Vanendert
Jelle Wallays
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