André Greipel leading Lotto-Belisol to Santos Tour Down Under in search of more glory
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Thursday, December 19, 2013

André Greipel leading Lotto-Belisol to Santos Tour Down Under in search of more glory

by Ben Atkins at 4:49 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour Down Under
 
German champion seeking 15th stage win in Australian WorldTour opener

andre greipelAndré Greipel will lead the Lotto-Belisol team to January’s Santos Tour Down Under, in what will be his seventh consecutive appearance in the Australian WorldTour opener. The German champion has taken a total of 14 stage victories in his previous six appearances in the race, including three in the 2013 edition, and won the race overall in 2008 and 2010.

“In 2014 it will be my seventh attendance in a row,” said Greipel. “I won the criterium in the run-up to the stage race three times and I took 14 wins at the actual Tour Down Under.

“In 2008 and 2010 I won the GC as well, so I have good memories of it,” he continued. “The race has become a bit tougher each year, but I see three opportunities to sprint in this edition. The aim is a stage victory.

“It will be the first time that the sprint train will be put on the rails next season and that we can put it to the test,” the German champion explained. “We leave two weeks before the start, so we can train in the most optimal conditions. In Australia we are sure to have good weather.

“It can be very hot, but I don’t have any problems with the heat,” Greipel concluded.

Alongside Greipel in the Lotto-Belisol team will be compatriot lead out man Marcel Sieberg, former Belgian champion Jürgen Roelandts, who suffered a fractured vertebra in the opening stage of the 2011 edition.

Popular Australian Adam Hansen will be starting his fourth straight edition of his home WorldTour event, along with Belgians Jens Debusschere and Olivier Kaisen. 23-year-old Belgian Stig Broeckx, who signed on with the team at the end of last season as a stagiaire, will make his WorldTour debut.

“There’s no question André Greipel and his fellow riders mean business when they come to race here,” said race director Mike Turtur. “The explosive power of these cyclists is a force to be reckoned with, and we know how much fans enjoy watching the team storm home for a sprint finish.

“The 2014 Santos Tour Down Under presents a range of challenges for the peloton, and it will be interesting to see who prevails across the mix of hills, descents and flats in store.”

Lotto-Belisol team for the People’s Choice Classic (January 19th) and Santos Tour Down Under (January 21st-26th)
André Greipel, Adam Hansen, Jens Debusschere, Olivier Kaisen, Jürgen Roelandts, Marcel Sieberg, Stig Broeckx

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