Lotto Soudal are one of the eleven UCI WorldTour teams heading to the Tour of Britain, and will be led by German National Champion Andre Greipel, a four-time stage winner in the race.

Bart Leysen, sports director for Lotto Soudal at the Tour of Britain said, “For our riders this race is part of the preparation for later goals, but of course they will grab their chance if there is an opportunity. First of all, we are aiming for a stage win with André Greipel, for whom this race is part of his build-up towards the Eneco Tour and the World Championships. None of the stages are flat, but he should be able to stay in the first group, except for the uphill finish on Friday. Also Jens Debusschere will get his chance to sprint, we’ll decide during the race when that’s possible. In all other stages he will do his job for André. Both are keen to go home with a good feeling.”

“Tony Gallopin should be able to set a good overall result. On Friday there is an uphill finish. That climb isn’t too hard, but long enough to split the group. That will be an important day for GC, just like the next day when there is an individual time trial on a course that contains a hill. Later that day the peloton will cover that same course six times. It’s not our plan to get a rider in a breakaway, because we will need our riders to chase. If we should notice that we are the only team that aims for a sprint though, then we can always change our tactics. But when I take a look at the start list it shouldn’t be a problem, there are other teams that are likely to aim for a sprint as well. De Buyst, Shaw and Sieberg will have to work. For our trainee James Shaw it will certainly be an unforgettable week, racing for a WorldTour team in his own country.”

Tony Gallopin will participate in the Tour of Britain for the first time, he talks about his expectations.

Commenting on the race, Tony Gallopin said, “After the Tour I rode the Clásica San Sebastián and then I didn’t take part in any races for three weeks. My first race was the Cyclassics in Hamburg and last week I raced in Plouay. I felt good, it was good to test the legs in a race. I’m now building up towards my last goals of the season. The Tour of Britain is a beautiful race though, where I would love to win a stage. There are some opportunities for punchers. It won’t be easy to win a stage, but I will do all I can. One-week races are perfect for me to strive for a good place on GC, but I’m not aiming for the overall victory at first instance. First of all I am aiming for a stage win.”

“I am riding the Tour of Britain for the first time because previous years I rode the Grand Prix of Québec and the Grand Prix of Montréal at this time. I love the Canadian races, but I wanted some change. Although that wasn’t an easy choice. Also as a preparation for the European Championships, which take place the week after Canada, this is better. I know the course of the road race in Plumelec very well, I have often raced there. Last year the team time trial of the Tour finished there as well. Afterwards I want to be good at Il Lombardia. Racing in Great-Britain is part of my preparation for these races, but of course I want to set good results in this race as well.”

Alongside Greipel, Gallopin and Shaw will be top track cyclist and 2014 Ghent Six Days winner Jasper De Buyst, sprinter Jens Debusschere and domestique and leadout man Marcel Sieberg.

Pictured below, Andre Greipel wins Stage Seven of the 2015 Tour of Britain in Ipswich, adding to his three stage wins during the 2010 Tour.

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