Teams & Riders Lotto Soudal Cycling Team

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That's nice, if true. Maybe the team already spoke with him. Or maybe he doesn't want to burn any bridges in case they make it.
yeah, but it's a bit odd that he specificially points out "He’s committed and more importantly contracted", although the whole article is about the opposite. Or does he mean to say that Lotto needs to honor the contract, no matter what? Maybe they don't see a chance to earn more money elsewhere anyway...
 
yeah, but it's a bit odd that he specificially points out "He’s committed and more importantly contracted", although the whole article is about the opposite. Or does he mean to say that Lotto needs to honor the contract, no matter what? Maybe they don't see a chance to earn more money elsewhere anyway...
That´s what I thought. Ewan is one of the best sprinters but he isn´t prime Cav/Kittel. And for whatever reason he tends to miss a lot of race days (unlucky/injury-prone). Not sure if any other team would be willing to give him the money and support that he is asking for.
 
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The UCI points system is flawed when you get 125 points for winning Marcel Kint and only 100 points for winning a Giro stage - You should get three times as many points for winning a GT stage.
I mean I think everyone knows this by now. I agree, I don't like it. LTS didn't benefit from the system either the past 2 years while their rivals back then did heavily (Arkea, Cofidis & Intermarché). But it's time for fans, riders and teams to just accept it for now. LTS obviously realized they need to play the system like those other (mainly french) teams have been doing for a long time and it's paying off. I still think it's probably to late but we'll see at the end of the season.

Another good week for Lotto about 250 points in Wallonie & Kint race ...
A 3rd place and a win is definitely a good week. 17 wins already and we aren't even June yet. That's really good for them. Even tho most of the wins are in smaller races, they're still wins. The squad for the one day races seems to be in really good spirit which will result in more good performances.

UCI points wise this week was somewhat breakeven with EF and BEX (Sobrero saved them after failing in Estonia). I expected LTS to have a worse weak compared to them so they should be really happy with how this turned out. Like I said before, June is going to be incredibly important. They need to hope that BEX and especially EF don't score big and LTS themselves need to score big in the Belgian one day races starting with Heistse Pijl, Brussels and Limburg next weekend. It's not going to be as easy as the last couple of smaller races anymore tho as they will have better teams and riders to deal with from now on. QS, AG2R, FDJ, Ineos, Jumbo, Bora, UAE, etc. will send teams to some of the Belgian one day races now that the giro is finished.
 
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Cras and Kron scored 53 points in France

The system is not perfect, but handing out more points in lower ranked races helps them to attract stronger fields, plus it helps teams that aren't getting the WT invites.
Well I guess that's the biggest positive about the system, but it also has a downside. Smaller teams have even less opportunities to win or even show themselves. These smaller races were the races they could have a small chance at winning or atleast have a good result. With more WT teams and better riders that has become even harder.

Anyways 50 points is not bad, but Israel comes closer and showed they're absolutely not dead yet. I think people underestimate how many points teams like Israel and also EF can score in these one day mountainous or hilly races if they need and there's a lot of them at the end of the year (in Italy for example). Going to be hard for Lotto to fight with them in those races when they basically only have Cras for the really hard ones and a few others for the hilly ones. It's easier to score big points in harder races than in sprint races because it's all about strength, which makes it easier to put more riders in the top 5 or top 10.

Going to be really important for Lotto to score a good amount of points in every Belgian race from now on. With Campenaerts and Wellens for example they could dominate the Belgian Tour GC (for once it has an actual hard queen stage). They will also have a very strong team for Dwars door het Hageland which is 1.Pro. Giving De Lie rest for the Brussels Cycling Classic might be a mistake tho if that ends in a sprint (but it's obviously understandable giving a 20y old some rest).
 
I mean I think everyone knows this by now. I agree, I don't like it. LTS didn't benefit from the system either the past 2 years while their rivals back then did heavily (Arkea, Cofidis & Intermarché). But it's time for fans, riders and teams to just accept it for now. LTS obviously realized they need to play the system like those other (mainly french) teams have been doing for a long time and it's paying off. I still think it's probably to late but we'll see at the end of the season.
I'm in the minority that doesn't agree :) The vast majority of the smaller races in the low countries, and quite a lot in France are for classics riders/durable sprinters. I would class Arnaud Demare as the latter, who just got 400 points from 6 days of the Giro. It is not conceivable that he could amass the same amount of points from riding six .1 races because sprint stages in GC races are a massively over-weighted. No racing or anything vaguely resembling a competition until the last 300 metres.

Then you have the smaller one-day hilly races in Italy and Spain, which are compromised by most WT teams focus on GC and GT races, so it depends on where they fall in the calendar as to how 'strong' the field is. But again, I'd argue they're far more competitive than the majority of GC stages. Are Fulsang's 80 points today any less worthy than any of the breakaway stages in The Giro? For most, they're two completely different disciplines, which is why so many GC riders, and to a lesser extent, WT sprinters, are rubbish at one-day racing.
 
Well I guess that's the biggest positive about the system, but it also has a downside. Smaller teams have even less opportunities to win or even show themselves. These smaller races were the races they could have a small chance at winning or atleast have a good result. With more WT teams and better riders that has become even harder.

Anyways 50 points is not bad, but Israel comes closer and showed they're absolutely not dead yet. I think people underestimate how many points teams like Israel and also EF can score in these one day mountainous or hilly races if they need and there's a lot of them at the end of the year (in Italy for example). Going to be hard for Lotto to fight with them in those races when they basically only have Cras for the really hard ones and a few others for the hilly ones. It's easier to score big points in harder races than in sprint races because it's all about strength, which makes it easier to put more riders in the top 5 or top 10.

Going to be really important for Lotto to score a good amount of points in every Belgian race from now on. With Campenaerts and Wellens for example they could dominate the Belgian Tour GC (for once it has an actual hard queen stage). They will also have a very strong team for Dwars door het Hageland which is 1.Pro. Giving De Lie rest for the Brussels Cycling Classic might be a mistake tho if that ends in a sprint (but it's obviously understandable giving a 20y old some rest).
Israel scored big points but sent their A-team which Lotto didn't do... and the "B-Team" of Lotto seems better then Israels of EF's, and that might make the difference in the end..
 
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De Lie just confirmed he will break open his contract and extend for 2-3 years.
"Why would I leave? I feel great here with Florian (Vermeersch), Céd(ric Beullens), Brent (Van Moer) and Seb(astien Grignard) by my side."

So a bunch of guys that have raced together on the Lotto U23 squad that now race for the WT-team that get along great, seems like the team-dynamique is amazing wich is promising for the coming years.
 
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Maxim Van Gils extended till 2024. Great news for the team. He's one of those guys I'm sure of he can deal with 250km races. I kind of expected him to look elsewhere (Alpecin or Wanty) with the possible relegation. Did not find his best legs after his COVID infection in Februari, hopefully he can show himself some more in the 2nd part of the season.
 
Van Gils signs a new contract

 
According to PCS, Ewan is now back in for The Belguim Tour, replacing De Lie, and will also ride Brugge on Sunday.

Great, aggressive ride by Kron in Aargau today rewarded with a 3rd place. Not too sure how many points he's likely to pick up over the summer, but he could be a good rider for the autumn races, where Lotto are relatively weak?
 
Looks like the team still wouldn't really mind being a ProConti team to be in the shadow for a few years and grow like that. They still prefer staying in the WT, but according to Nikolas Maes main sponsors and management don't see relegation as a drama at all.

Explains their possible Tour team too. Looks like all of their strongest guys will go, meaning a lot of topscorers that don't have a big chance at actually scoring points in the Tour and as a result won't be scoring points in important races like Wallonie or Poland either. I'm not going to complain about I would, I want them to stay in the WT but sponsors want their biggest riders in the biggest race of the race, riders themselves want to be there too and that's how cycling should be anyways. And not keeping good riders home so that can get easier points elsewheres.

Tour pre-selection:
Ewan (only one who's 100% sure)

De Buyst
Janse Van Rensburg
Schwarzmann (bit weird that he's in it and not Kluge)

Sweeny
Van Moer
Frison

Wellens
Gilbert
Van Gils
Vermeersch
Kron

So won't be completely around Ewan, they don't want a repeat of last year. Which is obviously a good thing, definitely knowing there aren't even a lot of flat stages in this Tour.
 
Looks like the team still wouldn't really mind being a ProConti team to be in the shadow for a few years and grow like that.
So, they ''prefer'' WT but PCT would be fine as well... I guess that's why they are sending De Lie to every half chance they get to score some easy points. What a load of crock.

If they go PCT, they will need to keep focus on youth flowing through, or they will lose their best U23 riders to other teams. These guys have no reason to stay at Lotto if the team is not going to significantly enlarge their odds to get into good races. If Lotto can't offer them that, then the ones that get offers from WT teams (the best riders) will leave. And if they want to keep focus on youth, that means less room for big names. Hence a smaller chance to get back to WT level later on. It seems to me Lotto is either trying to deny reality or lying to themselves. Nice to know De Lie will sign a new contract, even if they go PCT. Will he extend next time if the team is (still) PCT though? He'd be a fool if he did.

I'm actually starting to hope they don't make it and drop to PCT. In a way because i don't think there is a need for 4 Belgian WT Teams. And also because they have made such a mess of things that they actually deserve it.
 
Looks like the team still wouldn't really mind being a ProConti team to be in the shadow for a few years and grow like that. They still prefer staying in the WT, but according to Nikolas Maes main sponsors and management don't see relegation as a drama at all.

Explains their possible Tour team too. Looks like all of their strongest guys will go, meaning a lot of topscorers that don't have a big chance at actually scoring points in the Tour and as a result won't be scoring points in important races like Wallonie or Poland either. I'm not going to complain about I would, I want them to stay in the WT but sponsors want their biggest riders in the biggest race of the race, riders themselves want to be there too and that's how cycling should be anyways. And not keeping good riders home so that can get easier points elsewheres.

Tour pre-selection:
Ewan (only one who's 100% sure)

De Buyst
Janse Van Rensburg
Schwarzmann (bit weird that he's in it and not Kluge)

Sweeny
Van Moer
Frison

Wellens
Gilbert
Van Gils
Vermeersch
Kron

So won't be completely around Ewan, they don't want a repeat of last year. Which is obviously a good thing, definitely knowing there aren't even a lot of flat stages in this Tour.
The Tour team for now :
Gilbert, Tim Wellens, Florian Vermeersch, Brent Van Moer, de Australiër Caleb Ewan and Andreas Kron
https://www.hln.be/tour-de-france/philippe-gilbert-mag-zich-een-laatste-keer-opmaken-voor-ronde-van-frankrijk~a94b906a/
 
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