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An ambitious and optimistic Alexander Kristoff lines up “with more freshness”

This Sunday, Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux pursues its Flemish classics campaign with the 84th edition of Ghent-Wevelgem in Flanders Fields (1.UWT, 27/03), a race of 248.1 kilometer along the coast and Heuvelland, the battlefield of the First World War. Between Ypres and Wevelgem, the riders will encounter nine climbs and three “plugstreets”, small gravel roads in Ploegsteert.

Underneath the Menin Gate, the riders will start a long loop towards the coast and cross the windy Moeren. After 152 kilometer of racing, the sequence Scherpenberg, Baneberg, Monteberg and Kemmelberg has to be covered a first time. The three « plugstreets » precede the second repetition of this sequence, which contains  two passages on the Kemmelberg this time. 33 kilometer to the finish remain after this last difficulty.

After a remarkable performance in the E3 Classic Harelbeke, Biniam Girmay will conclude his spring campaign alongside former winner Alexander Kristoff. The Norwegian rider won the edition of 2019 by winning a sprint of thirty strong riders, among whom Adrien Petit (6th) who will participate for the tenth time just like Kristoff. Also Aimé De Gendt, Andrea Pasqualon and Kévin Van Melsen continue after the E3 Harelbeke and will be joined by Taco van der Hoorn. The selection of seven riders will race under the direction of Aike Visbeek, Steven De Neef and Hilaire Van der Schueren.

« Of course I have good memories from my victory three years ago, and this Sunday I will line up for my tenth Ghent-Wevelgem with a lot of ambition. I feel healthy again after waking up with fever Wednesday night, which unfortunately forced me to skip the E3 Classic. Maybe this plays in my advantage on Sunday, as I will benefit from more freshness at the start in Ypres than previous years without this difficult race in the legs. I appreciated the impressive performance of Biniam Girmay last Friday in his first major Flemish classic, showing his great potential once more. Also on Sunday I expect to meet him in front in the final and this idea makes me even more optimistic. With Biniam in our team, our chances to return home with a good result are reinforced. »


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