April 14, 2024

Alaphilippe, the big surprise!

Vacation time will have to wait for Julian Alaphilippe. The former yellow jersey holder will be the leader of Soudal-QuickStep at the Japan Classic on Sunday. The Frenchman will team up with James Knox, Fausto Masnada, Pieter Serry, Stan Van Tricht and Ilan Van Wilder for a criterium on Saturday, before the race itself on Sunday, 164.8km long with sixteen laps of a 10.3km circuit…

Vacation time will have to wait for Julian Alaphilippe. The former yellow jersey holder will be the leader of Soudal-QuickStep at the Japan Classic on Sunday. The Frenchman will team up with James Knox, Fausto Masnada, Pieter Serry, Stan Van Tricht and Ilan Van Wilder for a criterium on Saturday, before the race itself on Sunday, 164.8km long with sixteen laps of a 10.3km circuit marked by the ascent of Mt. Kogashi (2.1km with an average gradient of 6%).

And at its best in the Italian classics, Quick-Step is ambitious. We hope to have a good weekend in Japan. The motivation is there and we’ll do our best. Some of our riders are coming here after a solid performance in the one-day races in Italy and are determined to end the season with a good performance, said Davide Bramati, the Belgian team’s sporting director.

Limited to the role of teammateith Remco Evenepoel, Julian Alaphilippe is set to return to a leading role in Japan. This race will be the last opportunity for the Saint-Amand-Montrond native to confirm his return to form, glimpsed in the first Italian races, and claim his third victory of the year after the Drôme Classic in February and a stage in the Critérium du Dauphiné in June.