What's Cool In Road Cycling

Lotto Belisol: Preview Tour of Austria

During the first week of the Tour de France Lotto Belisol will be riding elsewhere as well: the 65th Tour of Austria. This takes place from Sunday 30th of June until Sunday 7th of July. This stage race of the Europe Tour has eight stages, one is a time trial of 24,1 kilometers on the penultimate day. In Austria there has to be climbed a lot, the first day there is a finish 1,8 kilometers after a climb outside category. A day later the finish is on top of the Kitzbüheler Horn. In the next stages there are always several hills, only the final stage and the time trial are flat.

In the recent Dauphiné Tim Wellens of Lotto Belisol left a big impression, here he will find a similar route. Next to Wellens also Gaëtan Bille starts, he animated the final of the Belgian championship last Sunday. Other riders that go to Austria are Tom Boonen, Fabian Cancellara, Gianni Meersman, Sergio Henao and Mathias Frank, who was leading the GC in the Tour de Suisse until the final day.

Bart Leysen, sports director: “We are aiming for a stage win first of all, then we can look at the GC. Tim Wellens has set his mind on this race. He has to attack and if he can win a stage, that would be wonderful. If he performs consistently during this round a good classification will follow of course. The first three days will immediately be decisive for the GC. The first stage suits Tim very well.”

“In the less tough stages, we can take a chance with Tosh Van der Sande. If a smaller group arrives at the finish, Tosh can sprint for the victory. If Gaëtan Bille is part of a break that makes it to the end, he can get a nice place in GC as well, he can time trial pretty well and that’s important to defend your position on the penultimate day.”

Selection Lotto Belisol: Gaëtan Bille, Sander Cordeel, Olivier Kaisen, Jurgen Van de Walle, Tosh Van der Sande, Jonas Van Genechten, Dennis Vanendert and Tim Wellens.

Sports directors: Jean-Pierre Heynderickx and Bart Leysen.


Stage 1: Sunday 30th of June: Innsbruck – Kühtai (134,9 km)

Stage 2: Monday 1st of July: Innsbruck – Kitzbüheler Horn (157,4 km)

Stage 3: Tuesday 2nd of July: Heiligenblut – Matrei/Osttirol (119,7 km)

Stage 4: Wednesday 3rd of July: Matrei/Osttirol – St.Johann/Alpendorf (146 km)

Stage 5: Thursday 4th of July: St.Johann/Alpendorf – Sonntagberg (228,3 km)

Stage 6: Friday 5th of July: Maria Taferl – Poysdorf (182 km)

Stage 7: Saturday 6th of July: Podersdorf am Neusiedler See – Podersdorf am Neusiedler See (24,1 km) (ITT)

Stage 8: Sunday 7th of July: Podersdorf am Neusiedler See – Vienna (122,8 km)

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