Cycling | 19 februari 2017
LottoNL-Jumbo travels to Abu Dhabi Tour with leaders Gesink and Kruijswijk
Team LottoNL-Jumbo starts the Abu Dhabi Tour next week with leaders Steven Kruijswijk and Robert Gesink. The four-day stage race, February 23 to 26, is the third WorldTour event after the Tour Down Under and the Cadel Evans Road Race.
After the last two editions, the Abu Dhabi Tour this year stepped up from HC to WorldTour status and moved from an autumn to a spring date. This will be the second time for the race in six months given the 2016 tour ran in October.
Team LottoNL-Jumbo takes a wide selection of cyclists to the Middle East. George Bennett will make his comeback after struggling with mononucleosis. He spent the winter at home in New Zealand and recovered enough to race in the United Arab Eremites.
Team leaders Kruijswijk and Gesink will ride together for the first time this year and Spaniard Juan José Lobato will lead the sprint train.
The global mix is strengthened with German Paul Martens, Italian Enrico Battaglin and American Alexey Vermeulen. Sports Director Addy Engels will have six different nationalities in his Abu Dhabi team.
Most stages suit sprinters like Lobato. Only the third stage features a serious climb, the summit finish at Jebel Hafeet. As with the last two years, the climb will likely determine the overall winner.
Abu Dhabi Tour 23 - 26 february
Juan José Lobato
Sports Director: Addy Engels
Mechanics: Tim van der Zanden & Jan-Willem van der Heijden
Soigneurs: Carl Israël, Jip Regtop & Michal Szyszkowski