Our team will form a partnership with Balen BC, with a view to helping some of the best junior riders to fulfil their potential.

After recently announcing that the Soudal Quick-Step Devo team will join the Wolfpack fold from 2023, the latest development is aimed at setting up an even wider foundation that can help talented riders build towards a potential future with the development team and even the World Tour team.

Having been founded in 1948, Balen BC has become part of one of the most famous paths for young riders to make it to the top of the cycling pyramid. Over the years the team cohort has included a young Tom Boonen and Remco Evenepoel, who currently leads La Vuelta a España, with both going on to become members of the Wolfpack. Our current sports director Wilfred Peeters also learnt his trade with the team, before moving on to be a long-serving member of Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl.

While there will not be a rebrand of Balen BC, the partnership with Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl, which will be starting in February 2023, will see the two work closely together to identify the best young riding talent and help nurture their talent. They will share a wealth of cycling knowledge and ideas, with the aim of helping their development as riders and young people, as well as building a sustainable talent stream to feed both the development and World Tour Teams.

Speaking of the partnership, Jef Robert of Balen BC said: “As the manager of Balen Bicycle club I’m honoured and proud about being part of the Wolfpack. We are one of the leading youth teams in Belgium and in Europe, and we lead the peloton with our youth development program. Year after year, Balen Bicycle Club is one of the most significant suppliers of the professional teams. Starting at the age of eight we let the young talents discover the world of cycling, we learn and motivate them to grow and finally give them a massive support in getting an entrance ticket for the World Tour teams.”

Rober continued: “Being a part of the Wolfpack will boost our organization and is a huge reward for the team leaders, sports directors, employees, and volunteers of Balen BC. Joining the Wolfpack will take the progress of our teams to another level and will open even more doors to the biggest international races where we can gain even more experience. Both teams have a comparable DNA, sharing characteristics such as team spirit, hard work, bike smart and try to win races! Today, we are convinced that this cooperation will lead us to a massive number of glorious victories creating new champions. We are already looking forward to February 2023.”

Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl CEO Patrick Lefevere was equally delighted with this partnership: “We have had a great relationship with Balen BC and Jef over the years, without ever formalising it. Their track record of consistently identifying and developing young and talented riders speaks for itself. We have been very fortunate that they have helped both Remco and Tom during their younger days, who then became two of our most famous riders. This partnership will hopefully lead to us uncovering some more of the best young riders around, and together we can give them a platform on which they can shine.”


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