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Jolien D’hoore “really excited to race again” in Sunday’s Diamond Tour

Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling’s Jolien D’hoore returns to action on Sunday in the Flanders Diamond Tour, in Antwerp, Belgium, to defend the victory that she took in the race last year. The 25-year-old Belgian Champion has been taking a planned break from the peloton since late April, and is anxious to pin a number on her back once again.

Last year’s Diamond Tour win was the first UCI-classified victory of what was to be D’hoore’s best season to date, as she beat then Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling rider Beatrice Bartelloni to the line.

“I’m really excited to race again,” D’hoore smiled. “Actually I’ve had one of the best preparations for the road season. I’ve had three weeks in an altitude chamber, which hopefully gives me some benefits in the coming races. Yeah, I had a really good training in the last couple of weeks, and I’m looking forward to racing again, putting a number on; I’ve really missed it!

“I had a two week break, and then it’s been training, training, training. I’m ready now, and I just want to race!” she laughed.

D’hoore’s last competitive race was the Dwars door de Westhoek, on the 26th of April, where she won the bunch sprint for second place behind solo winner Elise Delzenne. The reasons for her having taken a six-week rest are clear, however, with the rigours of the winter track season adding to those of a full year on the road.

“I did a full track season, and then went immediately to the road, so I didn’t have a break or anything,” D’hoore explained. “It had been a while since I’d rested for a couple of days. So I just needed it; not only physically, but also mentally. I went on holiday, so now I’m ready to race again, and to have a full road season, and track season again.”

Before her planned break D’hoore had enjoyed an incredible start to the season, with her first ever World Cup victory at the Ronde van Drenthe, and second place in the Tour of Flanders, behind Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling teammate Elisa Longo Borghini. In addition to her best-ever performance in the World Cup – which saw her lead the series twice – the Belgian champion also won the Omloop van Het Hageland and the first stage of the Energiewacht Tour.

“It was a bit unexpected because I didn’t have full preparation for the road season!” D’hoore laughed. “I came from the track, so for me it was a bit unexpected to go so well in those races. But right now I’ve had a really good preparation for the road, so normally I should be better right now! So we will see how it will go in the coming races.”

Immediately after the Diamond Tour, D’hoore will travel to London to join up with her Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling teammates as they prepare for the Aviva Women’s Tour. The Belgian Champion did not take part in last year’s inaugural edition of the British race, but can’t wait to show her red, yellow and black driekleur jersey in what is one of the biggest races of the season.

“It’s my first time, but I heard from everyone that it’s quite amazing!” she said. “I’m just excited to be a part of it this year!”

D’hoore will be joined in the Diamond Tour by a strong Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling team, which will include Australian double Track World Champion Nettie Edmondson in her first European appearance in the black and orange jersey. Completing the team will be Breton Champion Audrey Cordon-Ragot, Great Britain Criterium Champion Eileen Roe and Manx talent Anna Christian.

Wiggle Honda Pro Cycling line up for the Flanders Diamond Tour (14th June)
Anna Christian (Great Britain), Audrey Cordon-Ragot (France), Jolien D’hoore (Belgium), Annette Edmondson (Australia), Eileen Roe (Great Britain)


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