Lotto Belisol: Preview Tour de Suisse
The WorldTour peloton will be active on two fronts this weekend, while it are the last stages in the Critérium du Dauphiné the Tour de Suisse begins. This stage race runs from Saturday the 14th of June until Sunday the 22nd of June. Five riders in the Lotto Belisol selection have participated in the Giro, among them Maxime Monfort.
Tough stage on Sunday
Two individual time trials are planned in Switzerland. On the opening day the time trial is 9.4 kilometers long, with a short climb on the second part of the course. The second time trial will take place on Friday, over a distance of 24.5 kilometers. Also here the road goes up a few times. The last 5.5 kilometers go downwards. On Sunday the riders will already have to cover two climbs hors catégorie: the Gotthardpass and Furkapass. These are followed by two climbs of second category. The last top lies at 22 kilometers from the end.
Final stage to Saas-Fee
In the third stage lie three climbs of second category on the course, with a hill at the end. Tuesday and Wednesday are the most flat stages. On Thursday the course contains four climbs, one of first category and one of second category in the first half and in the final a climb of second and one of third category. The finish line is drawn a few kilometers after the last descent. On Saturday 21st of June the peloton will arrive in ski town Verbier. After reaching the top of a climb hors catégorie 1.8 kilometers to the finish are left to cover. The final stage will be tough. After 40 and 60 kilometers of racing lie the top of a first and second category climb respectively. At the end there’s the hors catégorie climb to Saas-Fee.
Kurt Van de Wouwer, sports director: “Like every year the course is pretty tough. Maxime Monfort can aim for a good result in the overall classification, depending on how he has recuperated after the Giro. We will wait for the opening time trial and mountain stage of Sunday. If he’s lost too much time, we can change our tactics and Monfort can go for a stage win. For those who rode the Giro, we’ll see how it goes.”
“In the beginning of next week there are three stages that possibly can end with a bunch sprint. Kenny Dehaes, Tosh Van der Sande and Jonas Van Genechten are fast. During the stage we can decide who will be our man for the sprint. In the preparation on the bunch sprint we might help, but one won’t expect from us that we take control of the race.”
Selection Lotto Belisol: Sander Armée, Vegard Breen, Kenny Dehaes, Gert Dockx, Maxime Monfort, Tosh Van der Sande, Jonas Van Genechten and Jelle Vanendert.
Sports directors: Jean-Pierre Heynderickx and Kurt Van de Wouwer.
Stage 1: Saturday 14th of June: Bellinzona – Bellinzona (9.4 km) (ITT)
Stage 2: Sunday 15th of June: Bellinzona – Sarnen (181.8 km)
Stage 3: Monday 16th of June: Sarnen – Heiden (202.9 km)
Stage 4: Tuesday 17th of June: Heiden – Ossingen (160.4 km)
Stage 5: Wednesday 18th of June: Ossingen – Büren A.D. Aare (183.6 km)
Stage 6: Thursday 19th of June: Büren A.D. Aare – Delémont (192.8 km)
Stage 7: Friday 20th of June: Worb – Worb (24.5 km) (ITT)
Stage 8: Saturday 21st of June: Delémont – Verbier (219.1 km)
Stage 9: Sunday 22nd of June: Martigny – Saas-Fee (156.5 km).