Mar 25, 2023 at 2:09 PMUpdate: 7 minutes ago
Fabio Jakobsen must help Soudal Quick-Step to success in Gent-Wevelgem on Sunday. Team boss Patrick Lefevere is not happy with the results of recent weeks and therefore sets up his two most important sprinters with Jakobsen and Tim Merlier.
“In Gent-Wevelgem we do what we don’t really want to do: line up both Merlier and Jakobsen. Fabio would like to drive and we don’t have many arguments to leave him at home,” Lefevere writes in his weekly column in the Belgian newspaper Het Nieuwsblad.
The team boss also expressed his dissatisfaction with the performance of his riders in the E3 Prize on Friday. Julian Alaphilippe, among others, cannot play a significant role in the one-day race, which was won by Wout van Aert after a great battle.
Belgian sprinter Merlier had been on the list of participants for Gent-Wevelgem for a while, but the name of European champion Jakobsen is a surprise. Merlier is the most successful sprinter of the season so far with five victories to his name.
Jakobsen won two stages this season
The 26-year-old Jakobsen won two stages this season: in the Tour of San Juan and the Tirreno-Adriatico. Last week, the Dutchman finished fifth in Bruges-De Panne.
Jakobsen and Merlier have support from Kasper Asgreen, Tim Declercq, Yves Lampaert, Florian Sénéchal and Bert Van Lerberghe in Gent-Wevelgem on Sunday.
At Jumbo-Visma, Van Aert and Olav Kooij, among others, are at the start, while Dylan Groenewegen wants to give Team Jayco AlUla success. Gent-Wevelgem is 260 kilometers long and starts on Sunday at 10.50 am.
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