cycling news / Leopard Pro Cycling returns to Le Samyn
Next Wednesday, the first of March, Leopard Pro Cycling returns to Le Samyn (UCI 1.1), where the team had its very first victory with German Dominik Klemme back in 2011. This race marks the long awaited start of Leopard Pro Cycling’s 2017 road race campaign.
Roster: Jan Brockhoff, Alexander Krieger, John Mandrysch, Aksel Nõmmela, Gaëtan Pons, Szymon Rekita, Laurent Vanden Bak & Tom Wirtgen – DS: Tom Flammang
In 2011, the newly formed Leopard cycling team was able to take the win in Le Samyn with a late attack of Dominik Klemme. Now, six years later, the team is happy to return to this race which is part of the Belgian ‘Napoleon Games Cycling Cup’ classification. The start sign of the race will be given just over half past twelve, after which the riders will have to conquer 202 difficult kilometres. The first 100 kilometers, the riders will do a big loop from Quaregnon to Dour, which is followed by four smaller laps of about 25 kilometres with four cobbled sections over an undulating course. Here, the men will be separated from the boys and it is important to be very attentive in this finale. Good to know: the final few kilometres are slightly uphill.
It is to be expected that the race will be very difficult, not only because of the terrain, but also because of the eventual bad weather conditions. These conditions will be quite different to the conditions that the riders experienced in Mallorca where the team had its training camp in early February. During those days on the Balearic island, all of the riders – including the debutants in the team – put in some great efforts to be race ready with races like Le Samyn, Tour de Normandie and Le Triptyque des Monts et Châteaux approaching quickly. Also sports director Tom Flammang is happy with the work that has been put in during the one and a half week in the South.
Tom Flammang: “We had a very good training camp in Mallorca, where the riders worked very hard to be in shape for the season start. We already noticed the improvement since last year and it’s good to see that everybody is keen on pinning a number on his jersey. Le Samyn will be a tough start to our season. The possible bad weather conditions can make the course very hard and therefore we need to be very concentrated an aggressive right from the beginning and we have to make sure to be in the best position towards the most important points on the route.”