ORICA-GreenEDGE aiming to be competitive at La FlÃ¨che-WallonneMon 18 Apr 2016
Experienced Swiss rider Michael Albasini will lead ORICA-GreenEDGE at La Flèche-Wallonne on Wednesday after podium finishes here in 2012 and 2015.
The multiple Tour of Romandie stage winner came third last year and second in 2012 proving himself to be a consistent competitor in the Ardennes Classic.
A strong team of support will accompany Albasini including Paris-Nice stage winner Michael Matthews, Paris-Roubaix winner Mathew Hayman, 2015 Tour of Denmark Champion Chris Juul Jensen and Belgian classics specialist Jens Keukeleire.
The 80th edition of La Flèche-Wallonne takes place on Wednesday and is the second race of the trio of races that form the Ardennes Classics coming three days after Amstel Gold Race and four days before Liege-Bastogne-liege.
Sport director Matt White is confident that the team can perform well in the historic race.
“We’ve done well here over the last few years,” said White. “Michael (Albasini) has repeatedly achieved good results here and he deserves to be our leader on Wednesday.”
“Michael works tirelessly for the team as we saw in Sunday’s Amstel Gold Race, he is giving his all for 90% of our races for others and this is where he gets his chance to be the protected rider.”
“We are going into the race with a strong team capable of performing well,” continued White. “It is always a hard race with an undulating parcours and one of the most challenging final kilometres of any race. We will be competitive and hopefully we can get Michael to where he needs to be to contest the finale.”
Experienced Canadian Christian Meier, San Sebastian winner Adam Yates and young Australian Jack Haig complete the line up for ORICA-GreenEDGE with the 22-year-old Haig making his debut in the race.
La Flèche-Wallonne is an iconic race that covers 196kilometres and is favoured by riders with a penchant for punchy climbs. The famous Mur de Huy is traversed three times throughout the race and is the point where many of the previous 80 instalments have been decided.
La Flèche-Wallonne takes place on Wednesday the 20th of April, the race will start in Marche-en-Famenne and finish in Huy.
ORICA-GreenEDGE at La Flèche-Wallonne (Wednesday 20th April):
Michael Albasini (SUI, 35)
Jack Haig (AUS, VIC, 22)
Mathew Hayman (AUS, NSW, 37)
Chris Juul Jensen (DEN, 26)
Jens Keukeleire (BEL, 27)
Michael Matthews (AUS, ACT, 25)
Christian Meier (CAN, 31)
Adam Yates (GBR, 23)