Vuelta: Gilbert not among 7 Belgians from Lotto-Soudal, Sunweb takes Van...

The 75th Vuelta starts on Tuesday with an almost complete Belgian Lotto-Soudal selection. The Pole Tomasz Marczynski is the odd man out. At the age of 36 he is the road captain, in 2017 he won 2 stages in the Vuelta. It is his 5th time in Spain.

Leader Tim Wellens will make his debut in the Vuelta, for 4 youngsters it will be the first ground round. Wellens will ride the Ronde on Sunday and will be at the start of a first hilly stage in Irun on Tuesday. Wellens has already participated 3 times in the Tour and 3 times in the Giro, where he won a stage twice.

Stan Dewulf (22), Brent Van Moer (22), Gerben Thijssen (22) and Kobe Goossens (24) will be working for the first time for 3 weeks. Rémy Mertz and Tosh Van der Sande, who finished 3rd in the Vuelta 2019 twice, complete the lot.

Gilbert thought with his forfait for the Ronde and Roubaix that he might still make it to the Vuelta. But his broken kneecap – in the 1st stage in the Tour – still plays tricks on him. He had started the competition a little too quickly to make it to the classics. But the knee pain makes it.

The Vuelta arrives in Madrid on 8 November, last year Primoz Roglic won. The Slovenian from Jumbo-Visma defends his title.

Team Sunweb throws the youngsters out of the team for the lions in the Tour of Spain. No fewer than 5 riders will make their debut in a major cycling round, including our fellow countryman Ilan Van Wilder (20). In addition, it concerns the Dutchman Thymen Arensman, the Briton Mark Donovan and the Germans Max Kanter and Martin Salmon.

“With a young, but very talented group, we not only go on the hunt for daytime success, but also look at the development of our riders,” says team coach Marc Reef.

“A grand tour is the perfect environment to focus on the process of collaboration between young guys and to apply the expertise within the team. We don’t want to put pressure on that.”

The Australians Robert Power and Michael Storer and the German Jasha Sütterlin complete the team.

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