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by Shane Stokes
June 16, 2017
In today’s Daily News Digest: Pozzovivo takes stage 6 and overall lead in the Tour de Suisse; Groenewegen wins stage 2 of Ster ZLM Toer; Sam Bennett wins stage 1 of the Tour of Slovenia; Hindley and Hamilton take Australian one-two on final day of Baby Giro, Sivakov wins overall; Loubet wins stage one of the Route du Sud; Min wins stage 2 of the Tour of Korea; Cavendish returns to action with solid ride on stage one of the Tour of Slovenia; Cookson defends biological passport, reveals existence of two ongoing cases; Varnish angry after publication of British Cycling report; Collins says he doesn’t believe Cookson should be re-elected UCI president; Matthews confirmed to lead Team Sunweb at Tour de France as longlist announced; Video: Peter Sagan rides new Specialized Diverge; Video: Throwback Thursday from the 2016 world championships
Having won the first Grand Tour of the year with Tom Dumoulin, the Giro d’Italia, Team Sunweb has now turned its attention towards the Tour de France and a different approach there. The team stated on Thursday that it is targeting stage wins in the French event and, consequently, has selected Australia’s Michael Matthews plus his leadout man, the German Nikias Arndt.
“This year our goal is to go for stage results and this long-list will offer plenty of talent and opportunities to select a powerful line-up,” said team trainer Hendrik Werner. “A line-up not only to support Michael optimally on the sprint stages with a strong lead-out, but also one to create opportunities from breakaways that potentially make it to the finish, as well as the intermediate stages.”
In order to be in the best possible shape for the Tour, the team has said that its coaches and experts ‘have created the most optimum performance plan in preparation for July, consisting of a mix between races, altitude training and balanced rest periods.’
Werner gave a little more detail. “We have spent time training at altitude together, along with the rest of the team, building further on a strong foundation from the first racing block of the season to prepare for a tough three-week-journey in France. The last couple of races ahead of the Tour have been and will be used to focus on coaching, cooperation and on the dynamics within the team and to fine-tune the sprint preparation process.”
Aside from Matthews and Arndt, there are 11 riders on the long list. They are Søren Kragh Andersen, Warren Barguil, Phil Bauhaus, Roy Curvers, Johannes Fröhlinger, Simon Geschke, Ramon Sinkeldam, Tom Stamsnijder, Laurens ten Dam, Mike Teunissen and Albert Timmer.