Maikel Zijlaard is one of our eight additions ahead of the 2020 season. The 19-year old Dutchman lands in the Academy after two years at Pro Continental level with the Axeon Hagens Bermans squad. Fresh off our first get together of the year, Zijlaard highlights the high chemistry and the great vibe in the team. “The team camp was really fun and, of course, I was really excited to get to meet everyone I’ll be racing with. The environment is very chill and it just feels like a group of friends riding their bikes together, so it could not be better”. 

The strong and multi-talented Dutch rider, who powered to third in the opening prologue of the 2019 Giro d’Italia U23, has a clear image of how he wants to perform in 2020. “My main objectives will be, mainly, to grow as a bike rider and I think that I am in the right place for that. I think that I can go for some results myself in some of the early races of the season, but I’m also ready to play a team role and help others to get their chances”. 

Recently crowned as National Team Pursuit Champion in the track, Zijlaard comes into his third season as U23 ready to make yet another step in his development. “I want to have a constant and regular season. With the right preparation and guidance, I know that I am more than capable of performing well all year around, so that will be one of my main goals as I feel that it will make me grow a lot as a rider”.