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by Shane Stokes
September 13, 2017
Pedersen wins opening stage of the PostNord Danmark Rundt; Bertazzo best after opening two stages of the Tour of China I; Nibali diagnosed with fracture, will miss worlds; Canyon/SRAM team signs Barnes, Klein and Riffel; Defending champions QuickStep Floors names teams for worlds team time trial; The SHEcret Pro: Worlds, Aussie selection drama, transfer travails; Cycling Australia ends support for Orica-Scott women’s and development teams; Serious injuries on the rise for Victorian road cyclists; Video: Tour de Moselle crash
A year after defending the title it took in Qatar, three-time world team time trial champion QuickStep Floors has named its selection for this year’s contest. Present will be Niki Terpstra, who has competed in the past six editions of the race as a QuickStep rider and who was part of the victorious lineup in 2012, 2013 and 2016.
Joining him are three others who were part of last year’s successful effort, namely Bob Jungels, Yves Lampaert and Julien Vermote. The team will be completed by Jack Bauer and Philippe Gilbert, who became the first rider in over two decades to take a cobbled Monument and an Ardennes Classic in the same season.
“We come here with a very strong and well-prepared team, built around experienced riders and former champions of the discipline,” said directeur sportif Tom Steels. “So we are quite confident in our chances of getting another good result. We trained really hard for this. In the past weeks we simulated on many occasions the Bergen parcours and I could see that the guys were ready for it. So I’m confident they’ll show their determination and motivation on the road when it will matter.”
Steels gave his estimation of the course and how it contrasts to that of last year. “It’s up and down, a roller coaster which doesn’t allow you to make any mistakes,” he explained. “There’s no meter of flat, it’s totally different than what we had last year in Qatar, and the weather could play a crucial role in the outcome, as the rain can turn the fast descents into a skating rink.
“And let’s not forget the 400m-long cobblestone stretch placed not far from the finish, which can also impact on the race. This being said, it’s a race where the strength and cohesion of the team will be key factors at the end of the day.”