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Viviani wins in Abu Dhabi, Barnes in Valencia, new Shimano shades: Daily News Digest

by Shane Stokes

February 23, 2018

Viviani wins stage 2 of the Abu Dhabi Tour; Barnes wins stage 1 of Setmana Ciclista Valenciana; Von Hoff fractures four vertebrae, yet keeps fingers crossed for Commonwealth Games; Olympic MTB champ Jenny Rissveds breaks contract to address mental health; Boonen takes up role with Lotto-Soudal and Captains of Cycling project; Shimano unveil new S-Phyre R and X premium eyewear; New Cannondale aero bike spotted; Video: WNT-Rotor ready for 2018

Boonen takes up role with Lotto-Soudal and Captains of Cycling project

by Shane Stokes

Although he spent the bulk of his career with the QuickStep Floors team, Tom Boonen has announced that he will work with the Captains of Cycling project, which is a funding arm of the Lotto-Soudal squad. The project announced Boonen as an ambassador on Thursday afternoon, saying that it ‘couldn’t wish for a better ambassador’ than the former world champion and multiple Classic winner.

“Last year I watched the Captains of Cycling project from a distance,” said Boonen, who retired after the 2017 Paris-Roubaix. “Paul [De Geyter, Captains of Cycling general manager] has told me more about it and I consider it a challenge to support this project as an ambassador. I think that as a rider I have contributed to the promotion of Belgian cycling and I will try to do the same in my new role. Cycling has always been the sport of the people and Belgium has an immense cycling history. Both the fan and entrepreneur feel connected to the sport.”

He will also help the Lotto-Soudal team. “My role for the Lotto Soudal team will be an advising role. I certainly won’t be looking over the shoulders of everybody, but on the areas where I can share my experience, I will gladly do so,” he said. “Of course I know a lot of staff members and riders, so I won’t need to adapt much to the team.”

De Geyter has been running the Captains of Cycling project, which enables members of the public to invest between €50 and €5,000 each and receive perks in return. “I am very happy that we can now work together again, this time as part of the Captains of Cycling and Lotto Soudal story,” he said. “Hopefully this is the beginning of a successful cooperation for many years.”

“Tom becomes ambassador for Captains of Cycling. It was obvious that Tom was most suited for the task. As a rider he already was an ambassador of Belgian cycling.”

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