The men's and women's teams are motivated for the iconic Classics after capturing top results in the last weeks.
On Wednesday, September 30, Trek-Segafredo will kick-off the Ardennes Classics campaign with Flèche Wallonne, the always thrilling curtain-raiser, before Liège-Bastogne-Liége on Sunday and Amstel Gold Race the following week. Both the men’s and women’s teams will be racing for glory in these iconic events traditionally held in spring but rescheduled for fall due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Richie Porte is coming off a brilliant Tour de France, which saw him take a career-best third-place finish and will lead the team in Flèche Wallonne and Liége-Bastogne-Liége. The Tasmanian gave a notable performance in the Imola World Championships road race and is motivated to fight for a good result in his last races of the season.
“These will be my last races for Trek-Segafredo,” pointed out Porte. “It has been a great year, and I really want to finish off on as good a note as possible. I’m motivated to do a good result in these races but let’s see how the legs are after the Tour de France and the World Championships.”
Flèche Wallonne will be held Wednesday and will finish on the legendary Mur de Huy. The 202-kilometer classic will boast a powerful field, including the Tour de France podium. The race is a good indicator of which riders are riding strongly ahead of the third Monument of 2020, Liège-Bastogne-Liège, where Porte will line-up for the first time since 2016. Supporting the 35-year-old are neo-pros and Ardennes Classics debutants Juan Pedro López (his first race after crashing out of the Critérium du Dauphiné), Michel Ries, and Junior World Champion Quinn Simmons. After good performances at the Tour de France and Imola World Championships road race, former Latvian Champion Toms Skujins could play the joker and joins Dane Alexander Kamp and Australian Will Clarke in rounding out the seven-man line-up.
“Naturally, if we can bring Richie to the bottom of the climb in a good position, he can do well. But it’s hard to know what to expect when you finish the Tour de France and head to the World Championships the next week and immediately after that to Flèche Wallone,” said DS Kim Andersen. “Perhaps some of the riders will have the opportunity to race a bit more freely and try to go for a breakaway. For sure it will be a hard race, and a few of our riders are coming back from injury or crashes, so we’re keeping our expectations in check.
“In Liège-Bastogne-Liège, we hope to be more prominent because both Richie and Toms (Skuijns) know that race and if on a good day, we can go for a good result.”
The Ardennes Classics will conclude the following weekend with the third race of the Ardennes trio, the Amstel Gold Race, scheduled for October 10.
The Trek-Segafredo women will line up with a strong roster for the Ardennes races, featuring Elisa Longo Borghini – who won a stage and finished third in the Giro Rosa and a bronze medal in the Imola World Championships – and Lizzie Deignan, the UCI Women’s WorldTour leader. Deignan finished a solid sixth-place finish in Imola and is motivated to add to her WorldTour wins in La Course by Le Tour de France and GP de Plouay. The Ardennes suit her strengths, and she has enjoyed success in these classics in the past, finishing runner-up on several occasions.
Supporting the powerful duo are French Champion Audrey Cordon-Ragot, US Champion Ruth Winder, Tayler Wiles, Anna Plichta, Ellen Van Dijk, Trixi Worrack, and Lauretta Hanson.
“Our ladies have shown at the World Championships that they are in good shape and we will, for sure, try to go for the win in both races. At the same time, we’re also motivated to defend the Women’s WorldTour leader’s jersey that rests on the shoulders of Lizzie (Deignan),” said DS Ina-Yoko Teutenberg.
Trek-Segafredo lineups for Flèche Wallonne
Men: Will Clarke (AUS), Alexander Kamp (DEN), Juan Pedro López (ESP), Richie Porte (AUS), Michel Ries (LUX), Quinn Simmons (USA), Toms Skujins (LAT)
Women: Audrey Cordon-Ragot (FRA), Lizzie Deignan (GBR), Elisa Longo Borghini (ITA), Anna Plichta (POL), Tayler Wiles (USA), Ruth Winder (USA).
The rosters for Liège-Bastogne-Liège will be announced after Flèche Wallonne.