The two Soudal Quick-Step riders will be at the start of Sunday’s competition.
Oud-Heverlee, a small municipality located in the Flemish Brabant, will host the inaugural edition of the Gravel European Championships. Consisting of four local laps in and around the Oud-Heverlee and the Meerdaalwoud, a big forest area just south of the city of Leuven, and one big loop towards Brussels of around 48 kilometers, the event will be far from being an easy one, taking in around 1500 vertical meters.
Our partners at Specialized give us the luxury of choosing from the fastest bikes and equipment in the world for any race. We’ve enjoyed incredible success on the Specialized Roubaix with Future Shock at the Spring Classics and our riders have now chosen to ride the new Roubaix SL8 for this event. The new Future Shock 3.0 offers our riders even more tune ability for the course and the increased tire clearance means we can equip the bike with the super fast Pathfinder 38mm tires. With even more aero advantage and a super light 7.3kg weight, the new Roubaix SL8 is ideal for the fast, hilly, mixed surface of the gravel route.
“Riding the first edition of the Gravel Europeans brings a lot of motivation. I have a history in cyclo-cross and it makes me excited to take on the gravel, I like trying new things, and the fact that it comes now, towards the end of the season, is perfect. I did a recon of the course and I can say it’s a nice local lap. I hope to get a nice result but we will see how it works out”, said Tim ahead of the 159km race.
Photo credit: ©Dario Belingheri / Getty Images