After completion of the Spring classics, with plenty of success for the team, Boels-Dolmans Cycling Team is looking forward to continue its Spring campaign in a number of stage races. Coming up first is the GP or Fesival Elsy Jacobs, led by Christine Majerus.
The Luxembourg champion will be supported by four team mates in her home race, a three-day UCI2.1 race. She is joined by 2018 Healthy Ageing Tour winner Amy Pieters, Jip van den Bos, Skylar Schneider and Anna Plichta.
With almost ten participations in the race, there will be no surprises for Majerus, who will line up as the returning winner.
“The stages don’t change here from year to year, so everyone knows what’s coming,” said Majerus. “I’m going to try to just do a good prologue first. You don’t win the GC there, but you can lose it. So for everyone in the team it is important to get that one done nicely before thinking ahead.”
In 2017, Majerus got to take home the yellow leader’s jersey for the first time.
“Winning last year was great,” she said. “Everything went perfect and winning at home makes it even worth more.”
“I don’t have the pressure anymore to show that I can win it,” Majerus continued. “Winning once doesn’t mean you need to win it every year from that point on, so I try to be relaxed about it and just enjoy pinning on number 1.”
The GP Elsy Jacobs is the first race after the Spring classics, in which the team took six important victories, plus a third place for Majerus in De Panne, a new Women’s WorldTour race.
“You only can be happy with how the Spring went for the team,” said Majerus. “One the one hand obviously you have the wins and podiums and on the other hand the way we rode as a team every time. Personally, my level was pretty constant over the whole Spring and I think I worked well for the team. I got my chance mainly in De Panne - not a win, but still nice to podium in a Women’s WorldTour race.”
The race is named after Elsy Jacobs, the Luxembourg rider who was the first ever women’s World Road champion in 1958. It starts with a 2.8-kilometer prologue on Friday night in Cessange. The first rider sets off at 5.30pm CET and the last rider is expected to finish around 7.30pm CET.
Stage one on Saturday is 97.7 kilometers in length and finishes with five laps on a short finishing circuit after an initial route that contains three GPM’s. The start is at 2.30pm CET and the stage is expected to take three hours.
The race finishes with stage two on Sunday, starting at 2.00pm CET. At 111.1 kilometers, it’s slightly longer than Saturday’s stage. There is once again a local lap at the end of the route that the peloton has to complete five times.
The official Twitter account of the race is @Festival_Elsy and the official hashtag is #elsy18. There will be a livestream with English commentary by Cycling Weekly journalist Owen Rogers and Eurosport commentator José Been on the Elsy Jacobs website. Whether this will be from start to finish or the last 1-1.5 hours of each stage is yet to be announced. As soon as we have this info, we’ll share on our social media channels.
Boels-Dolmans for GP Elsy Jacobs:
Jip van den Bos