Aside from the talent development that it’s happening on the road, with our talents getting better day in day out, this season is also special for our brand new DS, Pim Ligthart. After 12 seasons in the professional ranks, the former Dutch Road Race Champion put an end to his career and is making the transition to sports director and play a crucial role in the development of tomorrow’s stars. Ligthart looks back to a solid season start of our talents despite the growing difficulties to put together a high-quality program. 

“It’s a difficult year for all U23 riders in one way or the other. A lot of races are getting cancelled and postponed and it makes it really hard to have consistency in the racing program and to plan long-term goals. The first wave of races is already over, but we can look back to it on a very positive note. The level that the guys have shown it’s something to be proud of, and just to see how motivated they are and how they keep each other on top of their game is something amazing to witness”. 

The Performance Staff is working hard to provide our riders with a solid training program that, despite the lack of racing, can keep our riders improving constantly. “We could see already at Le Samyn and GP Monseré, that despite the strong start list our riders did a very good job. And then in Greece, the guys put a very strong performance and having Stan (van Tricht) and Daan (Hoole) in the Top 5 overall was just another proof of that. 

The next step for us is a training camp in the Limburg area, that will set the tone for the upcoming goals. “With Flèche Ardennaise already on the 9th of May and the Giro d’Italia U23 as the big goal of the season, we are ready to keep showing that fighting spirit” concludes Ligthart.