The results are in from the French National Championships with some tight racing in the Elite Men's field.( Photos: 1 )
Hungary might not have the biggest mountains, but there are several places well suited to bigger travel bikes.( Photos: 15 )
Two-wheeled magic with Pat Smage.( Photos: 15 )
Virgin, Utah (July 11, 2019) – Red Bull Rampage, the most challenging event in Freeride Mountain Biking, promises to make the 2019 iteration the greatest spectator and athlete experience in its storied history. To ensure spectators have an epic time, two great ticket options are available to guarantee an unforgettable experience. Attendees have two options to choose from, traditional General Admission, and Rampage Experience. General Admission requires bike-in access, includes a bike valet, and unbelievable views of the competition. The Rampage Experience package offers a guided hike to the Rampage course start the day before the event, shuttles to and from the event site, bike valet, a Friday lunch voucher and a seven-day Zion National Park pass. Tickets will be released on Monday, July 15th at 1:00 PM PST at: https://www.strideevents.com/events/red-bull-rampage/2019/register (Additional GA tickets will be released on 9/15 and 10/15.) TICKETING PACKAGE DETAILS GENERAL ADMISSION - $65 PLUS TAXES AND FEES Friday event access; Bike valet. RAMPAGE EXPERIENCE TICKET – $500 PLUS TAXES AND FEES Friday event access; Guided group hike to the event start; Shuttle access to and from the event site on both days; Bike valet access; Lunch voucher for both days; Preferred viewing during finals; Seven-day Zion National Park pass; Signature Rampage merchandise item. MINORS PERMITTED ONLY IF 16+ AND ACCOMPANIED BY AN ADULT. Red Bull Rampage is supported by Kia Motors America, BFGoodrich, Utah Sports Commission, Venmo and Red Hydrogen. More information on Red Bull Rampage can be found here: redbull.com/us-en/events/rampage SPECTATOR ADVISORY Red Bull Rampage features the world’s greatest riders tackling the most intense terrain of any contest on the planet – no novices here. The same applies for spectators; this event is not for casual observers. The new Red Bull Rampage venue was chosen for its ability to challenge the riders and push their limits, so it is remote, hot, unforgiving and dangerous. No transportation from the parking lot to the venue will be provided. From the lot, it is four miles to the contest venue over uneven desert terrain that you will either have to hike or pedal. If you ride it, you’ll need to check your bike at the on-site bike valet once you reach the contest venue, no exceptions. The good news is that both ticket options offer free bike valet! Spectators will be required to stay within the designated viewing areas at the base of the course near the finish line. No pets allowed, and non-adult spectators are not recommended. All on-site rules and requirements are necessary to ensure everyone’s safety and enjoyment. If you decide to attend, pack plenty of water, snacks, sunscreen, extra layers of clothing, basic first-aid gear, and a flashlight/headlamp as no provisions will be available on-site. In other words, treat it like an unsupported weekend ride with your buddies. Just think ahead, be smart, and come prepared to have an amazing time. ABOUT RED BULL RAMPAGE Featuring a world-class broadcast team including Sal Masekela, Pat Parnell, Tina Dixon and freeride mountain biking legend Cam McCaul, Red Bull Rampage coverage begins Friday, October 25th at 9:00am PST/Noon EST, live and on-demand on Red Bull TV. Red Bull TV is distributed digitally as an app across mobile phones, tablets, consoles, OTT devices, Smart TVs and online atwww.redbull.tv. ABOUT RED BULL TV Red Bull TV features beyond the ordinary live events and videos featuring inspirational stories covering sports, music and lifestyle entertainment. Anytime, anywhere. Red Bull TV is available on the web, connected TVs, gaming consoles, mobile devices, and more. Accessible via the web at www.redbull.tv and its Android, iOS and Windows Phone applications, Red Bull TV is also available as a pre-installed channel on Apple TV and Samsung Smart TVs and as a free, downloadable app on Amazon Fire TV, Kindle Fire, Chromecast, Nexus Player, Roku Players, Roku TV models and Xbox consoles. ABOUT THE MARZOCCHI PROVING GROUNDS Tickets for the inaugural Marzocchi Proving Grounds presented by 5.10 the same day as Red Bull Rampage: July 15th. The event will be the first official athlete qualifier for the 2019 Red Bull Rampage. The event will take place at Oregon Dirt Park, just east of Bend, OR, on September 6th – 8th. The action packed mountain bike festival weekend, will include top pros at Black Sage which is part of the FEST series on Saturday, September 7th and Proving Grounds on Sunday the 8th. The festival will offer individual ticket sales as well as weekend camping passes that will include exclusive access to the venue, camping, industry vendors, food trucks, craft beer, music and more. Tickets are limited and go on sale Monday July 15th – please visit H5 Events website for more information. ABOUT UTAH SPORTS COMMISSION: The Utah Sports Commission is a not-for-profit 501c3 charitable organization governed by an all-volunteer Board of Trustees consisting of statewide sports, business, community, and government leaders. The Sports Commission was created to be a catalyst for Utah in its Olympic legacy efforts and to help enhance Utah’s economy, image and quality of life through the attraction, promotion and development of national and international sports. The Sports Commission works closely with communities, sports entities, and organizations to provide event services ranging from the bid process, on-site logistics, volunteer coordination, sponsorships and promotional opportunities and other related services. For more information, visit www.utahsportscommission.com
Kasper Asgreen and the rest of the Deceuninck-QuickStep squad rode the new Specialized S-Works Shiv TT Disc to third place in the Tour’s team time trial on stage two Specialized Asgreen ran 58-46t chainrings paired with an 11-28t cassette for the predominantly flat course Specialized The 1.92m tall Dane requires a truly lofty front end. The new bike’s handlebar and stem is said to be 200g lighter than the previous Shiv’s cockpit Specialized The Shiv’s frame has been optimised for use with the Roval 321 Disc wheel, while the stepped seatstays reduce weight without affecting aerodynamics, according to the US company Specialized The new bike cuts a ludicrously narrow wind-cheating profile Specialized The Roval wheels spin on CeramicSpeed bearings Specialized Mechanics will rejoice at news that the S-Works Shiv TT Disc is built around a traditional threaded bottom bracket Specialized The team were running Specialized’s own Turbo cotton tyres, which appear to be clinchers Specialized Deceuninck-QuickStep supports Specialized’s Riding for Focus initiative Specialized Deceuninck-QuickStep finished 21 seconds behind stage winners Team Jumbo-Visma on the 27.6km course in Brussels Zac Williams/SWPix.com The Specialized S-Works Shiv TT Disc – which launched last week ahead of the start of the 2019 Tour de France – is the UCI-legal version of Specialized’s wild triathlon bike that broke cover at the end of last year. The S-Works Shiv TT Disc was first spotted being tested by some riders at the Giro d’Italia, but the bike made its official debut on stage two of the Tour de France. For all of the juicy deets on the new bike, check out our comprehensive first look. This bike was ridden in the 27.6km team time trial by up-and-coming powerhouse, Kasper Asgreen, who had previously rode the new machine to victory in the Danish National Championships earlier this month. Jumbo-Visma eventually took the win on the stage ahead of favourites, Team Ineos, with Asgreen and the rest of the Deceuninck-QuickStep team in third. Tour de France 2019 bikes, gear and tech Tour de France bikes 2019: who’s riding what? Specialized’s new S-Works Shiv TT Disc is half a kilo lighter and just as fast The front end of the bike is rather lofty to accommodate the 1.92m tall Dane’s figure. In stark contrast, his extensions sit exceptionally close together, clawing back some valuable aero performance. For the largely flat course, Asgreen ran a (frankly ridiculous) 58-46t chainring combo, which was paired with an 11-28t cassette. The Roval 321 Disc wheel features a special finish in support of Specialized’s Riding For Focus program, which aims to supply bikes for children with ADHD. Specialized founder Mike Sinyard on the power of the bicycle Scroll through our gallery to get all of the details and be sure to check our guide to every bike in the 2019 Tour de France for more tech goodness.
Fully Charged Recently following a spate of rainstorms, I was out in the mountains overlooking Malibu scouting some trails with my girlfriend for an upcoming camping trip. The scenery was stunning. Everything was lush, there were flowers popping up, and the Sahara mustard was starting to bloom. The creek was full and rapid from the rains. As we walked along the trail trying to avoid the puddles, we were passed by a couple of volunteers from the Santa Monica Mountains Mountain Bike Unit. Although I had a feeling of what their response would be, I asked them what they thought about electric bikes. The two guys, who in their 50s and 60s, both gray-haired and both obviously cherished their post-ride beer refuels, talked at length with us. One of the two was overtly negative towards pedal-assist bikes, pointing out proudly that he not only preferred regular bikes, but his own mountain bike was a single-speed. He’s either that fit or a complete masochist, but I did have to offer my respect for that. His partner was a bit more open about e-bikes, though he, too, thought they were best for people who needed them and not just wanted them. Their concern wasn’t about the e-bikes tearing up the trails, as they both knew that they don’t cause any more wear than a traditional mountain bike. They were more worried that kids with no sense of trail etiquette would do damage and end up ruining the experience for other people on the trails. Organizations like NICA (National Interscholastic Cycling Association) are doing a great job of teaching etiquette to teens, as are some forward-thinking bike shops. It’s good for us to all work together to have a civil discussion with others to ensure we can all keep enjoying our local trails. YOU CAN’T MAKE EVERYONE HAPPY The two volunteers talked about the problem of user-group intolerance on the trails. Hikers want the trails to themselves, and cyclists do, too. Mostly, they get along, but some selfishly wish they were the only ones allowed on the trail. As one example, they recounted an event where volunteers took wheelchair-bound people down the trails, out into nature, and all the way to the beach at Sycamore Canyon. The Highway Patrol was there to block traffic so everyone could cross the Pacific Coast Highway to get out to the beach. Apparently, it was very emotional for the participants, with some of them crying because it was the first time they’d ever been to the beach. “It started when a blind man walked into a bike shop to buy a bike.” Sadly, both hikers and bikers lodged complaints because there were so many people and wheelchairs on the trail, such as, “How dare they be out here, especially on a weekend!” Shouldn’t this be a chance for everyone to enjoy the outdoors? If you slow down a bit for someone else to enjoy it with you, is that a bad thing? LEADING THE BLIND The wheelchair story reminded me of an article that ran in our sister zine Mountain Bike Action many years back (MBA, May 2001) about a group of blind mountain bikers. The group was known as BATS, or the Blind Adventure Travel Society. It started when a blind man walked into a bike shop to buy a bike. They thought he was joking, but one of the shop’s employees talked with him about his plan, since he could perceive light and could ride at night around the street near his house. Ultimately, the blind man’s brother demanded that the shop owner take the bike back. That experience inspired Griffin to go back to school and earn a master’s degree in special education, and he ultimately figured out that he could follow another mountain biker down a trail just by listening to the rider in front of him. He then started organizing rides for the blind, and it’s an incredibly inspiring and empowering story. You can read it on MBA’s website at https://bit.ly/2V6pywd HOW ABOUT YOU? Speaking of talking to people, I’d love to hear some great reader stories about how e-bikes have changed your life. E-mail me stories and pictures, if you have them, or send them in snail mail or via passenger pigeon. Until then, get out and ride! THERE ARE SO MANY WAYS TO GET ELECTRIC BIKE ACTION In print, from the Apple newsstand, or on your Android device, from Google. Available from the Apple Newsstand for reading on your iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch. Subscribe Here For more subscription information contact (800) 767-0345 Got something on your mind? Let us know at hi-torque.com The post Fully Charged appeared first on Electric Bike Action.
The 2019 Tour de France is on its way and we’re all getting geared up for the Grand Départ in Brussels on Saturday 6 July. So, to keep you going until then, here’s a full breakdown of all the teams taking part, their MVPs (most valuable players) and who to keep an eye on throughout the race. How to watch the Tour de France 2019 live Tour de France 2019: route and stage analysis Who are the 2019 favourites? Based on this year’s World Tour performances, there are several strong contenders for the podium at the 2019 Tour de France. Here are some of the bookies’ favourites for the General Classification: Geraint Thomas (Team Ineos) Egan Bernal (Team Ineos) Jakob Fuglsang (Astana) Adam Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) Nairo Quintana (Movistar) Tour de France 2019 teams and start lists AG2R La Mondiale French team AG2R La Mondiale is putting everything behind Romain Bardet Getty Highest GC 2018: 6th TDF stage wins 2018: 16 2018 WT ranking: 11th ‘All for one’ sums up the French team’s strategy. It will put everything behind Romain Bardet’s quest to become the Tour’s first home winner since Bernard Hinault in 1985. Second and third in recent years, the super-slender Frenchman has much in his favour, not least a route that’s pretty heavy on mountains, especially in the final week, and light on time-trialling, a long-time weakness. His support crew is stronger than ever, and there’s even a stage into his home town of Brioude. AG2R La Mondiale’s dream tour: Bardet wins yellow in a race celebrating 100 years of the iconic jersey. Start list: Romain Bardet Mikael Cherel Benoit Cosnefroy Mathias Frank Tony Gallopin Alexis Gougeard Oliver Naesen Alexis Viullermoz Team Astana Kazakh team Astana’s Jakob Fuglsang is currently having the season of his career Getty Highest GC 2018: 12th TDF stage wins: 12 2018 WT ranking: 6th Serial winners all season, the Kazakh team has been the dominant stage race force. Jakob Fuglsang, now 34 but enjoying the best form of his career, will be its leader. With victory at the Criterium du Dauphiné and Liège-Bastogne-Liège in the spring, the Dane is a diesel who should thrive on this high route. Astana won’t be short of talented climbers to support its leader if he misses out. Team Astana’s dream tour: A top five finish for Fuglsang with a couple of stage wins along the way. Start list: Pello Bilbao Magnus Cort Omar Fraile Jakob Fuglsang Gorka Izagirre Alexey Lutsenko Luis Leon Sanchez Hugo Houle Bahrain-Merida Bahrain-Merida is one of the first pro cycling teams based in the Middle East, with Vincenzo Nibali at its helm Getty Highest GC 2018: 18th TDF stage wins 2018: 0 2018 WT ranking: 7th One week less between the Giro and Tour means Vincenzo Nibali, not so fresh from a tilt at a third win at his home tour, may be eyeing stage wins rather than the yellow jersey. This will suit several of his teammates who will be heading into July with ambitions of personal glory. In sprinter/puncheur Sonny Colbrelli, time-trialist Rohan Dennis, and all-round talent Matej Mohoric, this well-backed team has the talent to bounce back from a lacklustre spring campaign. Bahrain-Merida’s dream tour: A bravura performance by Nibali and a couple of stage wins from his teammates. Start list: Ivan Cortina Damiano Caruso Sonny Colbrelli Rohan Dennis Matej Mohoric Vincenzo Nibali Dylan Teuns Jan Tratnik Bora-Hansgrohe German team Bora-Hansgrohe will be banking on Sagan getting his 7th green jersey this year Getty Highest GC 2018: 19th TDF stage wins: 5 2018 WT ranking: 3rd Peter Sagan’s below par performances this season have allowed his teammates to emerge from his shadow and grab a series of headline victories. With his sights set on a record-breaking seventh points title, Sagan will return to centre stage and, form permitting, should make the green jersey his once again. But keep an eye on climber Emanuel Buchmann and, particularly, 25-year-old puncheur Max Schachmann, who has been arguably the break-out performer of the season so far. Bora-Hansgrohe’s dream tour: A seventh green jersey for Sagan and a clutch of stage wins to go with it. Start list: Emanuel Buchmann Marcus Burghardt Patrick Konrad Daniel Oss Peter Sagan Maximilian Schachmann Gregor Muehlberger Lukas Poestlberger CCC Team Formerly BMC, CCC can hope for Greg Van Avermaet to have a spell in the yellow jersey Getty Highest GC 2018: 20th TDF stage wins: 0 2018 WT ranking: 4th The team formerly known as BMC is now being financed by Polish shoe company CCC, on a much smaller budget, with aspirations on stage wins rather than the yellow jersey this season. Leader Greg Van Avermaet is its prime hope for success. The Belgian failed to score a big win in the Classics, but victory on the final day of the Tour de Yorkshire was a reminder of the threat he presents in undulating terrain. Breakaway specialist Alessandro De Marchi is due a stage win. CCC Team’s dream tour: A stage win and a spell in the yellow jersey would be perfect on its Tour debut. Start list: Patrick Bevin Alessandro De Marchi Simon Geschke Serge Pauwels Michael Schär Greg Van Avermaet Łukasz Wiśniowski Joey Rosskopf Cofidis, Solutions Credits The French pro team is being led by Christophe Laporte, whose strength is endurance Getty Highest GC 2018: 43rd TDF stage wins: 9 2018 WT ranking: N/A The oldest team in the pro ranks hasn’t won a Tour stage since 2008, and there’s scant evidence from the first half of the season to suggest that drought will end soon. Shaken up last year following the arrival of former yellow jersey wearer Cédric Vasseur as manager, the French squad’s leader is Christophe Laporte, whose strength is his endurance. By Paris, he might be the fastest man in the race. Cofidis, Solutions Credits’ dream tour: A stage win anywhere by anyone would be hugely significant. Start list: Nicolas Edet Jesus Herrada Christophe Laporte Anthony Perez Pierre-Luc Perichon Julien Simon Natnael Berhane Stephane Rossetto Deceuninck-Quick-Step Belgian outfit Deceuninck-Quick-Step has averaged over two stage wins per Tour for the last decade Getty Highest GC 2018: 11th TDF stage wins: 36 2018 WT ranking: 1st Averaging more than two stage wins per Tour over the last decade and a half, and the form team of the current season, the Belgian outfit is odds on to continue that run of success and could contend for all four jerseys. For sprints it’ll look to the prolific Elia Viviani, while debutant Enric Mas should be among the best young riders. The star is Julian Alaphilippe. He’ll have plenty of opportunities to emulate his two-stage and polka-dot jersey haul of last year. Deceuninck-QuickStep’s dream tour: A rider in the top five, a spell in yellow and a clutch of stage wins. Start list: Julian Alaphilippe Kasper Asgreen Dries Devenyns Enric Mas Michael Morkov Elia Viviani Yves Lampaert Max Richeze EF-Education First The American team has some strong contenders for the mountainous route Getty Highest GC 2018: 27th TDF stage wins: 8 2018 WT ranking: 16th Rigoberto Uran, runner-up in 2017, is one of the many Colombians who should thrive on the mountainous route, particularly in the final week. There are, though, several other riders who could easily make a mark, such as Alberto Bettiol, the surprise winner of the Tour of Flanders. Canadian climber Michael ‘Rusty’ Woods will also look to the GC, but will be relishing each of the summit finishes. EF-Education First’s dream tour: A podium finish for Uran, top 10 for Woods and a couple of stage wins. Start list: Alberto Bettiol Rigoberto Uran Tejay van Garderen Michael Woods Sebastian Langeveld Tanel Kangert Simon Clarke Tom Scully Groupama-FDJ French team Groupama-FDJ’s David Gaudu is a strong contender for the white jersey Getty Highest GC 2018: 34th TDF stage wins: 11 2018 WT ranking: 14th Thibaut Pinot has turned his attention back to his national tour thanks to a route that offers him a huge opportunity to repeat his podium finish of 2014. In support, Groupama will pack its line-up with climbers and leave out sprinter Arnaud Démare, winner of stages in each of the last two years. It’s a risky strategy given Pinot’s occasional flakiness in July. David Gaudu, a first-time WorldTour stage winner at Romandie in May, should contend for the white jersey as he gives his all for his leader. Groupama-FDJ dream tour: A podium finish and a stage win for Pinot, and the white jersey for 22-year-old Gaudu. Start list: David Gaudu Rudy Molard Thibaut Pinot Sébastien Reichenbach Anthony Roux Matthieu Ladagnous Stefan King William Bonnet Lotto Soudal Belgian team Lotto Soudal has sprinter Caleb Ewan up its sleeve Getty Highest GC 2018: 65th TDF stage wins: 27 2018 WT ranking: 15th The Belgian team usually has a sprint focus and this continues as new arrival Caleb Ewan seeks to rekindle the glory days Lotto enjoyed with Robbie McEwen and André Greipel. The small but power-packed Aussie has had a solid start as the squad’s main hitter and won at the Giro d’Italia before what will be a Tour debut. The route doesn’t favour sprinters, so Lotto will also field some attack-minded riders in the shape of breakaway king Thomas De Gendt and puncheurs Tim Wellens and Tiesj Benoot. Lotto Soudal’s dream tour: Two stage wins (and one for Ewan) with De Gendt crowned most aggressive rider. Start list Tiesj Benoot Jasper de Buyst Thomas De Gendt Caleb Ewan Jens Keukeleire Roger Kluge Maxime Monfort Tim Wellens Mitchelton-Scott Aussie team Mitchelton-Scott is throwing its weight behind Adam Yates for the GC Getty Highest GC 2018: 23rd TDF stage wins: 2 2018 WT ranking: 5th Adam Yates’ GC challenge ended early last year, but buoyed by twin brother Simon’s win at the Vuelta and his own impressive spring campaign that included a string of victories and high GC finishes, Mitchelton is throwing its weight behind him again. The experience Yates gained last year and the route support this strategy. Backed by a strong line-up including Daryl Impey, he might be in yellow following the second-day team time-trial. Mitchelton-Scott’s dream tour: Victory in the TTT, a couple of stage wins and Adam Yates on the podium. Start list: Jack Haig Daryl Impey Matteo Trentin Adam Yates Simon Yates Luke Durbridge Chris Juul-Jensen Michael Hepburn Movistar Team Spanish Movistar Team is backing Nairo Quintana to clinch yellow Getty Highest GC 2018: 7th TDF stage wins: 27 2018 WT ranking: 8th Nairo Quintana’s efforts to complete a full set of Grand Tour victories have been hampered by his and his team’s reserved approach at the Tour. This July, the Spanish squad has reverted to an all-for-Nairo strategy with Landa given a free role. The Colombian’s 2019 record has given reason for optimism, especially as Quintana has raced more aggressively. Backed by a powerful cohort of climbers on a route ideally suited to his qualities, Quintana has his best chance so far to clinch yellow. Movistar Team’s dream tour: Victory in Paris for Quintana, with a couple of stage wins and the team prize. Start list: Andrey Amador Imanol Erviti Mikel Landa Nelson Oliveira Nairo Quintana Marc Soler Alejandro Valverde Carlos Verona Arkéa-Samsic The Breton team hasn’t been having a great season, but may be redeemed by sprinter Greipel and climber Barguil Getty Highest GC 2018: 17th TDF stage wins: 0 2018 WT ranking: N/A The Breton team has performed so poorly over the past season and a half that manager Emmanuel Hubert has stated that there will be a major reworking of the roster before the 2020 season. The principal disappointment has been the form of 2017 King of the Mountains Warren Barguil, who hasn’t won a single race since then. Hit by bad luck and fractured vertebrae at Paris-Nice, the Breton should at least be fresh at the Tour. Veteran sprinter André Greipel is also overdue a big win. Arkéa-Samsic’s dream tour: A sprint win for Greipel, a mountain stage and a second King of the Mountain title for Barguil. Start list: Warren Barguil Maxime Bouet Anthony Delaplace Elie Gesbert André Greipel Kevin Ledanois Amael Moinard Florian Vachon Dimension Data The South African team can hope for some stage wins Getty Highest GC 2018: 59th TDF stage wins: 7 2018 WT ranking: 18th After what the team has described as “a highly competitive process” for selection this year, the surpise omission to the team start list this year is Mark Cavendish. Expected to return to winning ways after illness and crashes, Cavendish won’t be rolling out of Brussels on Saturday after all, the first time since his first Tour de France in 2007. Britain Steve Cummings has made the final cut however, as has American Ben King, and Michael Valgren and Edvald Boasson Hagen are expected to make a return to winning form. Dimension Data’s dream tour: A few stage wins from the team’s mixture of specialist riders Start list: Edvald Boasson Hagen Stephen Cummings Reinardt Janse van Rensburg Michael Valgren Roman Kreuziger Giacomo Nizzolo Ben King Lars Bak Team Ineos With Froome out, British Team Ineos can hope for a 7th title in 8 years, but will it be Thomas or Bernal who shines? Getty Highest GC 2018: 1st TDF stage wins: 17 2018 WT ranking: 2nd The question of how Sky’s successors might accommodate the ambitions of defending champion Geraint Thomas became even more intriguing when Colombian phenomenon Egan Bernal was forced to miss his leadership assignment at the Giro with a broken collarbone. Bernal may emerge as the strongest on a route that gives him every opportunity to display his astonishing climbing talent. All for one and one for all may be their battle cry. But who’s the one? Team Ineos’ dream tour: A seventh title in eight years. The question is, for who with two team leaders? Start list: Egan Bernal Geraint Thomas Jonathan Castroviejo Michal Kwiatkowski Gianni Moscon Wout Poels Luke Rowe Dylan van Baarle Jumbo-Visma Dutch team Jumbo-Visma have a flying Dutchman in the form of Dylan Groenewegen Getty Highest GC 2018: 4th TDF stage wins: 6 2018 WT ranking: 10th The Dutch team’s leader Steven Kruiswijk harried Sky all the way to Paris last year, and the dogged Dutchman should be in the frame again, although a podium place may prove too big a stretch, especially with the stage-winning ambitions of sprinter Dylan Groenewegen. One of the fastest finishers in the bunch, this flying Dutchman is a good bet to win at least once. Jumbo-Visma’s dream tour: A podium finish for Kruiswijk, a TTT win and three stages for Groenewegen. Start list: George Bennett Laurens de Plus Dylan Groenewegen Amund Grøndahl Jansen Steven Kruijswijk Tony Martin Mike Teunissen Wout Van Aert Katusha Alpecin Swiss Team Katusha Alpecin could do with a stage win or two Getty Highest GC 2018: 9th TDF stage wins: 4 2018 WT ranking: 17th With Marcel Kittel gone, it begged the question of who would take on his mantle of figurehead at the Tour. Ilnur Zakarin, ninth last year, has prioritised the Giro, but still offers a useful stage-winning threat. Focusing on stages is likely to be the team’s strategy, with aggressive riders such as Paris-Roubaix runner-up Nils Politt and galloper Rick Zabel likely to get an unexpected opportunity on cycling’s biggest platform. Katusha Alpecin’s dream tour: A stage win for anyone would lift confidence, two would put them in dreamland. Start list: Jens Debusschere Jose Goncalves Nils Politt Rick Zabel Ilnur Zakarin Alex Dowsett Marco Haller Mads Würtz Schmidt Team Sunweb With Tom Dumoulin out of the race, we’re all a bit unsure what to expect from the German Team Sunweb Getty Highest GC 2018: 2nd TDF stage wins: 14 2018 WT ranking: 9th Tom Dumoulin’s recent departure from the start list has left many people scratching their heads about Sunweb’s Tour de France strategy, no less than Michael Matthews, who admits he’s devoted most of his training time to preparing to support Dumoulin. The 2017 points winner is still suited to a number of the stages, but very disappointed by the latest developments. As things stand, Sunweb is lacking a Grand Tour contender, so we’ll just wait and see what happens. Team Sunweb’s dream tour: Who knows? At best, right now, they should hope for a green jersey for Matthews and a couple of stage wins if they find a suitable replacement for Dumoulin. Start list: Nikias Arndt Wilco Kelderman Søren Kragh Andersen Lennard Kämna Michael Matthews Nicholas Roche Cees Bol Chad Haga Total Direct Energie French team Total Direct Energie has 2017 stage-winner Lilian Calmejane leading the way Getty Highest GC 2018: 30th TDF stage wins: 10 2018 WT ranking: N/A The French team’s most significant signing in 2019 has been new lead sponsor Total, the oil and gas giant whose immense pockets are likely to lead to a beefed-up roster in 2020, particularly on the GC side. In the meantime, it’ll stick with its long-standing strategy of fielding attack-minded riders who’ll each get opportunities to pursue the stage win this team so often captures. Leading the way will be 2017 stage-winner Lilian Calmejane, Dutch Classics star Niki Terpstra and punchy Frenchman Anthony Turgis. Total Direct Energie’s dream tour: Two stage wins, a spell in the yellow jersey and Calmejane top 20 on GC. Start list: Lilian Calmejane Romain Sicard Rein Taaramäe Niki Terpstra Anthony Turgis Niccolo Bonifazio Fabien Grellier Paul Ourselin Trek-Segafredo Richie Porte is US team Trek-Segafredo’s GC leader for 2019 Getty Highest GC 2018: 26th TDF stage wins: 5 2018 WT ranking: 13th Winless for much of 2019, Trek stayed in the headlines thanks to regular citing of a mooted deal with Vincenzo Nibali, set to go through in 2020. This should sharpen the focus of Richie Porte, signed as GC leader just this season. So often set back by misfortune, the Australian has the talent to finish on the podium, but his team isn’t nearly as strong as those of his key rivals, so he’ll need to race smartly to achieve this result. Trek-Segafredo’s dream tour: Porte to finally avoid mishap, finish on the podium and win a stage. Start list: Giulio Ciccone Koen De Kort Bauke Mollema Richie Porte Toms Skujins Jasper Stuyven Julien Bernard Fabio Felline UAE Team Emirates The Emirati team will expect to see Dan Martin on the podium Getty Highest GC 2018: 8th TDF stage wins: 2 2018 WT ranking: 12th The well-backed Emirati team will put its weight behind Irishman Dan Martin, who’s aiming for an elusive Tour podium finish, and Alexander Kristoff. Martin could easily improve on his Tour best sixth place in 2017, with ex-Sky climber Sergio Henao as his lieutenant. They could bag a hatful of wins. UAE Team Emirates’ dream tour: Martin on the podium and two wins for its sprint attack. Start list: Fabio Uro Sven Erik Bystrom Rui Alberto Faria da Costa Sergio Henao Alexander Kristoff Dan Martin Vegard Stake Laengen Jasper Philipsen Wanty-Groupe Gobert Belgian team Wanty-Groupe Gobert was given the wild card this year, and could hope for a stage win Getty Highest GC 2018: 21st TDF stage wins: 0 2018 WT ranking: N/A That the Belgian team was handed a wild card in preference to the French Vital Concept squad boils down to the presence of French climber Guillaume Martin. Winner of the Etna summit finish in April’s Tour of Sicily, its only victory during the spring, the cerebral Martin is making steady progress up the GC ranks. He’d probably be rising quicker on a WorldTour team, but might not have the same opportunity to lead in his national tour. The top 10 might be out of reach, but a stage win is achievable. Wanty-Groupe Gobert’s dream tour: Top 10 for Martin and a stage win to reward persistent breakaway efforts. Start list: Frederik Backaert Aimé de Gendt Odd Eiking Guillaume Martin Xandro Meurisse Yoann Offredo Andrea Pasqualon Kevin Van Melsen