Fabio Jakobsen, and six other riders, will make their final appearance with the team.
Only two weeks separate us from the end of our season, and the Soudal Quick-Step boys are determined to make the most of every opportunity. One of these will be the Münsterland Giro – an event where we triumphed on three occasions – and which should once again come down to a bunch sprint, on paper at least.
Tim Merlier, who has won eleven races so far this year and has recently finished runner-up at the first edition of the Gravel European Championships, will be our squad’s main card in Germany, where he will count on French ITT Champion Rémi Cavagna, Josef Cerny, Lars Craps from the feeder team, Jannik Steimle, Bert Van Lerberghe and Stan Van Tricht.
“Münsterland Giro is an event we like, and we can be in for a very hard race, due to the rain and winds. Normally, it’s a bunch sprint there, but we need to wait and see how things go. If it’s a mass gallop, then Tim will try to be there with Bert as his lead-out man, so we’re pretty confident in our chances”, said sports director Geert Van Bondt.
Tre Valli Varesine, one of the many one-day races making up the Italian Autumn calendar, brings a hilly circuit comprising two demanding climbs, Morazzone and Via Sacco. Soudal Quick-Step will tackle it with Julian Alaphilippe, Jan Hirt, James Knox, Ilan Van Wilder, Mauri Vansevenant and Louis Vervaeke, who will be joined by Soudal Quick-Step Devo Team’s William Junior Lecerf, victorious last Sunday at the U23 Il Lombardia.
“The team showed a lot of grinta at the Coppa Bernocchi, and this is something we will carry into Tuesday’s Tre Valli Varesine. The parcours isn’t easy, but we have a good team and we will once again try to be in the mix at the right moment”, explained Davide Bramati.
Last but not least, Binche-Chimay-Binche will be an emotional race for the Wolfpack family, as it will mark the last outing of Fabio Jakobsen in the Soudal Quick-Step jersey. A pro since 2018, the Dutchman has and will forever have a special connection with our team – no matter where the road will take us and him in the years to come – for which he won a total of 44 races, including six Grand Tour stages and Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne.
Jakobsen will be joined for the Belgian race by Tour de France stage victor Kasper Asgreen, Yves Lampaert, Michael Mørkøv, Casper Pedersen, Florian Sénéchal and Ethan Vernon – all motivated to go for a good result in the race known for its short cobblestone sectors and spectacular final kilometer.
“Binche-Chimay-Binche will be a very demanding race. We can expect rain and winds, meaning we could have echelons at some point. The really narrow roads on the circuit and the finish line on the cobblestones will make it tricky, so you need a lot of power to be there and in contention for the victory. We go there determined to do a good race and show the Wolfpack spirit”, added sports director Tom Steels.
Tuesday’s races will be the last appearance in a Soudal Quick-Step jersey also for Rémi Cavagna, Michael Mørkøv, Florian Sénéchal, Jannik Steimle, Stan Van Tricht and Ethan Vernon.
Photo credit: ©Wout Beel
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