Omega Pharma-QuickStep have announced the line-up that will support Mark Cavendish at the Tour of Britain.
Alessandro Petacchi, who came out of retirement to join the team in August, will ride alongside the Manx Missile, while Michal Golas, Iljo Keisse, Martin Velits and Julien Vermote have also been named in the six-rider squad.
Cavendish and Petacchi will go in search of stage wins but OPQS directeur sportif Brian Holm admits the 2013 course, dubbed the most challenging yet by the race’s organisers, does not play into the hands of sprinters.
“The Tour of Britain is a race I like a lot,” said Holm. “It is a race with only six riders per team. We will go there with Mark Cavendish and Alessandro Petacchi for the sprints. I don’t think, however, we will have too many bunch sprints because it is a hilly, difficult parcour. A course like that is never easy to control. Also, the weather could be a factor.
“Beside Cav and Peta ,we have four other strong riders like Iljo Keisse, Julien Vermote, Martin Velits, and Michal Golas. They will have their own chances for sure on courses like this, as most are good attackers as well.
“They could also fight for a spot in the GC. We will try to do a good race and make sure our organisation is a factor in the race.”
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