Israel Start-Up Nation is eager to take on this week’s three challenging one-day races; Oxyclean Classic Brugge-De Panne, E3 Saxo Bank Classic and Gent-Wevelgem, aiming to continue the team’s series of good results in the Belgian classics this year.
Sports Director, Eric Van Lancker: “These three races are really important for us and we have a very strong group of riders here. De Panne could be a sprint but it’s also possible that a group will get away. We have some good sprinters here but we also need to be attentive and ready to attack if needed. For E3 and Gent-Wevelgem, we bank on Sep. He has already proven to be in great shape this season. I believe we can do very well in these races.”
Sep Vanmarcke has finished on the podium in Gent-Wevelgem on two previous occasions, taking second place in both 2010 and 2016. After a strong start to his first season with ISN, the Belgian classics specialist hopes to add to his tally on Sunday.
Sep Vanmarcke: “I’m not quite sure why but Gent-Wevelgem always suits me really well, having finished second there twice in the past as well as fourth and sixth. It’s a challenging race and it looks like we will get a lot of wind this weekend, which will be another factor to take into consideration. I hope we can race well as a team and hopefully, we can have a couple of riders in the first group at the end, giving us more cards to play in the final. For sure, we aim for the podium once again. However, first we need to survive the windy sectors and then, of course, the legs need to be there as well”.
In the five previous Belgian one-day races this season, the ISN riders have put on several impressive performances, making top-5 in each one of them. Seeking to continue that streak of good results, the team has selected the following riders for this week of racing:
Oxyclean Classic Brugge-De Panne: Jenthe Biermans, André Greipel, Hugo Hofstetter, Alexis Renard, Norman Vahtra, Tom Van Asbroeck & Rick Zabel.
E3 Saxo Bank Classic: Jenthe Biermans, André Greipel, Alexis Renard, Mads Würtz Schmidt, Norman Vahtra, Sep Vanmarcke, Rick Zabel
Gent-Wevelgem: André Greipel, Hugo Hofstetter, Mads Würtz Schmidt, Norman Vahtra, Tom Van Asbroeck, Sep Vanmarcke & Rick Zabel.