Maxime Monfort to join Lotto-Belisol on two-year contract
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Thursday, September 05, 2013

Maxime Monfort to join Lotto-Belisol on two-year contract

by Ben Atkins at 9:39 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
Belgian time trial specialist “fits perfectly” into Belgian team

maxime monfortMaxime Monfort will join Lotto-Belisol in 2014, on a two-year contract, the Belgian team has announced. The 30-year-old from Bastogne currently rides for RadioShack-Leopard, having joined the Leopard-Trek team on its formation in 2011, after spending the previous two years at HTC-Columbia.

A time trial specialist, Monfort was the Belgian national champion against the clock in 2009, while results this season include 14th overall in the tour de France and tenth in the Eneco Tour.

“Maxime is a rider who perfectly fits in the team,” said Lotto-Belisol general manager Marc Sergeant. “He’s a Belgian with a lot of experience, gained in different foreign teams and he’s keen on riding again for a Belgian squad. He’s a rider for stage races who can render us a service with his climbing capacities and good time trial in both big and small stage races.

“Next to Jurgen Van den Broeck and because of the development of Bart De Clercq, which I love to see happening, we set a step forward as a team in that area and we can appear at the start each time with top ten ambitions, where before that wasn’t evident,” Sergeant added. “Monfort also brings much experience from foreign teams and definitely wants to share this with our other riders.”

Having spent the first three years of his career at Landbouwkrediet-Colnago, Monfort transferred to French team Cofidis in 2006, and has ridden for non-Belgian teams ever since.

“The very first contacts with Lotto Belisol immediately felt right,” he said. “The fact that it’s a Belgian team has also played a role in my decision. It’s special for me after I have been riding in foreign teams for several years. On the sportive level I get great opportunities here.

“The complete programme has yet to be discussed, but I’ll be a protected rider in short stage races and Grand Tours like Giro or Vuelta,” Monfort explained. “In the Tour I’m prepared to work for Jurgen Van den Broeck who has already proven to have chances for a podium place. Apart from that I also want to pass my experience, acquired by being a pro for ten years now, to the young riders in the team.”

“I already know many people of the staff and of course of the riders, among other from the Belgian national team,” he added. “With some riders, like André Greipel, Adam Hansen and Marcel Sieberg, I rode together at HTC and Columbia. The list is long. Of course I also know Tony Gallopin very well, with whom I’m riding in the same team now, and who’ll also make the move. It’s a new team, with new challenges, but the change will definitely go smoothly.”

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