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Sobrero leads versatile Team BikeExchange-Jayco squad ready to tackle Tour de Romandie – Team BikeExchange Jayco

Team BikeExchange-Jayco will head to Switzerland for the Tour de Romandie with a versatile and punchy squad on the hunt for stage wins and a strong general classification showing.
 
Matteo Sobrero will ramp up his Giro d’Italia preparations at the five-day race, while Kiwi Dion Smith will give the team options in any potential fast finishes. Dutch climber Jan Maas will line up fresh off the back of his Ardennes Classics campaign, as will Ethiopian Tsgabu Grmay.
 
New Zealander Sam Bewley and Italian Kevin Colleoni are both back in stage racing action after the Tour of Turkey, with Amund Grøndahl Jansen completing the squad as he returns to the fold following illness.
 
The Swiss race is bookended by time trials, with a short 5km prologue kicking things off and a 15.8km race against the clock on the final day. The stages in between feature rolling terrain and the Queen Stage on the penultimate day, which features five Cat.1 climbs and a summit finish.
 
Team BikeExchange-Jayco Line-Up:
Sam Bewley (NZL)
Kevin Colleoni (ITA)
Tsgabu Grmay (ETH)
Amund Grøndahl Jansen (NOR)
Jan Maas (NED)
Dion Smith (NZL)
Matteo Sobrero (ITA)
 
Matteo Sobrero:
I think the Tour de Romandie is a good point to start for the Giro, I don’t know exactly how my shape and my condition is after an altitude training camp, but I had good feelings in the training camp, so I’m looking forward to some results and I will try to ride for the GC.
 
The first time trial is a prologue, it’s probably a little too fast for me and short, I’m a small guy, a light guy, but the last stage, the uphill time trial is something that I never did before in a WorldTour race, so I’m looking forward to it.”
 
Mat Hayman (Sport Director):
“The first three stages of Romandie, after the 5km prologue, are undulating and having Dion there, we have someone who is punchy for those stages. Then looking at the GC, Sobrero is getting ready for the Giro, he’s just come down from an altitude camp and he’ll be looking to test himself in both the TTs and the mountain stage.”
 
2022 Tour de Romandie – Stage Details:
Tuesday, 26th April, Prologue: Lausanne – Lausanne (5.12km)
Wednesday, 27th April, Stage 1: La Grande Beroche – Romont (178km)
Thursday 28th April, Stage 2: Échallens – Échallens (168.2km)
Friday 29th April, Stage 3: Valbroye – Valbroye (165.1km)
Saturday, 30th April: Stage 4: Aigle – Zinal (180.1km)
Sunday, 1st May, Stage 5: Aigle – Villars (ITT) (15.84km)

Photo: Getty Sport
 

— Team BikeExchange to www.greenedgecycling.com

Matthews hungry for an Ardennes podium lining-up with a versatile support team for Flèche Wallonne & Liège-Bastogne-Liège – Team BikeExchange Jayco

Australian Michael Matthews will lead a mixed Team BikeExchange-Jayco squad at the coming Ardennes Classics, Flèche Wallonne & Liège-Bastogne-Liège, with the team lining-up with high confidence after the Australian’s recent strong and consistent performances.
 
The 31-year-old finished seventh in his last two races, Amstel Gold Race and Brabantse Pilj after making it into the front splits but is hungry to snatch a podium placing this week, after previously finishing in fourth place in Liège-Bastogne-Liège and fifth place in Flèche Wallonne.
 
Surrounding Matthews will be a versatile team boasting various talents from the strength of experienced Chris Juul-Jensen, Jack Bauer, Tsgabu Grmay and Nick Schultz, through to the youthful motivation of Alexandre Balmer, Jesus David Peña and Jan Maas.

For Wednesday’s Flèche Wallonne, the men will tackle the Mur de Huy three times like most previous editions, with the close succession of short and steep climbs coming after 120km of racing. Sunday’s prestigious cycling Monument, Liège-Bastogne-Liège, will see the peloton tackle 254km before the main testing climbs come after 165km of racing.
 
Team BikeExchange-Jayco line-up:
Alexandre Balmer (SUI)
Jack Bauer (NZL)
Tsgabu Grmay (ETH)
Chris Juul-Jensen (DEN)
Michael Matthews (AUS)
Jan Maas (NED)
Jesus David Peña (COL)*
Nick Schultz (AUS)
 
Michael Matthews:
“I have been feeling good, the legs are good and I had two seventh place finishes in the last two races here, so I am feeling ready and motivated for these final two Ardennes Classics.

Flèche is always a hard race, and the Mur de Huy never gets any easier. I have been fifth here before so it gives me confidence that if I am in the right place, I can have a good result. Then for Liège, it is Liège, it is one of the cycling Monuments and a race I really would love to win. 

I have finished fourth in the race before, but I really want to try to get on the podium this year. It is a race that suits me, I expect it to be really aggressive racing like we’ve seen in all these races recently, but we’ve got a good mixed team for many situations that may unfold.”
 
Mathew Hayman – Sport Director:
“It is a hard iconic finish for cycling up the Mur de Huy, Michael has had some solid results up there, it is a climb that suits not only the punchy classics riders but also the pure climbers and we often see the light guys come in, so it is a bit of a cross over race of the classics.
 
We will be going all in with Michael, he has shown week in, week out, that he has got good form and he has had numerous top ten’s in these classics and we will continue to try and put him into a good position.
 
Liege is a longer race, there’s more chance for different race scenarios to happen. Flèche in recent years has always been a big bunch come to the bottom of the climb and essentially has been a race up the climb whereas in Liège, there is a lot more involved with getting to the final. Again we are looking to support Michael into the final, and we are hoping some of our other guys can step up to the mark and once we get around the Cote de La Rouche-Aux-Faucon, it is pretty much full on to the finish line.”

2022 Race Details:
Wednesday, 20th April: Flèche Wallonne – Blegny to Huy, 202.1km
Sunday, 24th April: Liège-Bastogne-Liège – Liège to Liège, 245.7km
 
Photo: Chris Auld

— Team BikeExchange to www.greenedgecycling.com

Versatile ISN lineup for Cro Race


Israel Start-Up Nation brings a strong team able to shine in all terrain for this year’s Cro Race, starting on Tuesday, September 28.

The six days stage race presents several chances for the sprinters but also for those who are good on the climbs. Especially the penultimate stage, to Opatija, will be crucial for the general classification with several ascents to overcome, amongst them the 13.2 km long HC climb Poklon.

Fresh off his impressive win on the final stage of Tour de Slovaquie, Itamar Einhorn hopes to continue his good streak and fight for victory in the bunch sprints, while Krists Neilands and Carl Fredrik Hagen will be the team’s leaders for the general classification.

Sports director, René Andrle: “We come to Cro Race with a powerful team. For the sprints, we have Itamar [Einhorn] who’s getting better and better these days and who took a beautiful win in Slovakia recently. We have a strong leadout here and we will go all in for him in the sprints. We also have two strong cards to play in the GC with Krists [Neilands] and Carl [Fredrik Hagen]. However, we don’t have the usual uphill finish this year, so it will be difficult to predict how the race will evolve. In any case, our goal is to win a stage and do well in the GC.”

Itamar Einhorn: “I have never done this race before so I don’t really know what to expect but I know there are several stages for the sprinters. I feel good at the moment and I have a strong team to support me in the sprints. I’m really motivated to finish off the season with another good result.”

Carl Fredrik Hagen: “Cro Race will be an exciting race. It’s not a regular stage race with an uphill finish to settle the GC. However, there are several long stages and multiple challenging ascents. Plus, it’s at the end of the season, so it will be hard to predict what will happen. I have a bit of a free role on the team, giving me the opportunity to go for both the breakaways and try something at the end of the stages if I see an opening. For me, it’s also just nice to be back racing with the team again after my crash. We are working very well together and I’m really looking forward to this week of racing.”

— Mikkel to israelcyclingacademy.com

Astana – Premier Tech brings a versatile team to Donostia San Sebastian Klasikoa – Astana

Astana – Premier Tech brings a versatile team to Donostia San Sebastian Klasikoa

The 2021 UCI WorldTour calendar resumes with the famous one-day race Donostia San Sebastian Klasikoa, where Astana – Premier Tech is bringing a strong and versatile team to the race, this Saturday, July 31st.

Riders will tackle a 223.5-km-long race route, featuring six categorized climbs, the last one Murgil-Tontorra (2.1 km, 10.1%) placed just eight kilometres from the finish line.

“As usual, this race will have a very strong line-up with many big riders who will fight for a glory on the streets of San Sebastian. Our team is also among the favorites here and we will aim to do our own race but, at the same time, we will try to follow other teams and to look for opportunities in the final. The team will be racing for two leaders, Luis Leon Sanchez, who proved to be in a good form after his win in Ordizia, and Gorka Izagirre, who is always looking strong in the races like Clasica San Sebastian. But I think that Oscar Rodriguez can fight for something important in this race as in Ordizia he showed himself really strong and the route suits him quite perfectly. Well, we have a few options for the first WorldTour race of the second half of the season and we will try to do a good race there”, – says Giuseppe Martinelli, Sports Director of Astana – Premier Tech.

At Donostia San Sebastian Klasikoa the Kazakh-Canadian team will be represented by Yevgeniy Fedorov, Yuriy Natarov, Oscar Rodriguez, Javier Romo, Luis Leon Sanchez, Nikita Stalnov and Gorka Izagirre.

— Vitalii to www.astana-qazaqstan.com