Our team has won the race on seven occasions with five different riders.

It’s the World Championships week, but not all the riders are in Australia. Many of them are still in Europe, more precisely in Belgium, getting ready to compete in Textielprijs Vichte (168.5 kilometers). The race has a pan-flat course, making the sprinters huge favourites to fight for victory, but as the previous editions have shown, there’s also a big chance that the race will be ripped apart by the vicious attacks of those hoping to avoid a mass gallop at the end of the day.

One of the most successful riders in the history of the team, Mark Cavendish will be in action Tuesday afternoon, part of a strong Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl team that will include also Tim Declercq, Iljo Keisse – a three-time winner of the race – Stijn Steels, Bert Van Lerberghe, Stan Van Tricht and Ethan Vernon, who comes at the start after an impressive outing at the Tour of Slovakia, where he took two victories.

“All our guys are in good shape, so we are quite confident. We have both Mark and Ethan for a sprint, but in this kind of race you need to be very attentive as everything can change quickly and everyone can get a chance. We are motivated and hope to be there and fight for a good result”, said sports director Tom Steels.


Photo credit: ©Luc Claessen / Getty Images

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