Eisel ready to lead HTC-Columbia in Gent-Wevelgem
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Saturday, March 27, 2010

Eisel ready to lead HTC-Columbia in Gent-Wevelgem

by VeloNation Press at 2:10 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling

Bernhard EiselAustrian Bernhard Eisel said he's ready to lead the HTC-Columbia charge in Belgium this Sunday at Gent-Wevelgem. Last year he didn't finish the race, but he rode to a strong second place finish in Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne behind Quick Step's Tom Boonen, finished ninth in the Scheldeprijs and eleventh in E3-Prijs.

"My condition is really good, better than it's ever been for this time of year, and I'm certainly ready to put in a great ride on Sunday," Eisel said.

Gent-Wevelgem was taken from its normal Wednesday slot and upgraded to a more prestigious weekend position for 2010.

"There have been a few changes to the route, with some extra early climbs and a slightly longer course, and that should make it less chaotic than usual in the first hour or so," he explained. "But with the double ascent of the Kemmelberg [climb] still as the main feature, we can expect things to be pretty much the same as ever at the end of Ghent-Wevelgem, and to have the same top Classics riders at the finish."

Eisel is skipping the E3-Prijs this year in order to be fresh for Sunday's event.

"We'll be going to check out the early part of the race, which is very different, and riding over the new climbs on Saturday," added HTC-Columbia's sports director Tristan Hoffman. "We're not starting the race with a single leader like some of the other Classics squads, but that can be a big advantage sometimes - we can be more flexible than other squads."

Coming just a week before the Tour of Flanders, Belgium's biggest spring Classic, Hoffman says "it's in no way a tryout for Flanders. This race is far too important for that. We won't be doing any experiments."

"I'll be going all out in Wevelgem, but whatever happens, I'll be back for Flanders and Roubaix, too," Eisel added, "I'm confident of a good result in all of them."

HTC-Columbia for Ghent-Wevelgem:
Lars Bak (Den); Gert Dockx (Bel); Bernhard Eisel (Aut); Jan Ghyselinck (Bel); Matt Goss (Aus); Vicente Reynes (Spa); Hayden Roulston (NZ); Marcel Sieberg (Ger)


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