One day after the Tour de France ends in Paris, another veteran Rolf Aldag will lead another wave of T-Mobile riders in the five day Tour de la Région Wallonne in Belgium.
Aldag has been working on the Tour as a co-commentator for the TV station ZDF but with every second day off, has used that free time to get in some important training. He will be joined in Belgium by newly-crowned Russian champion Sergey Ivanov, plus the climbing specialists Sergey Yakovlev and Paco Lara. Torsten Hiekmann and neo-pro Marcus Burghardt complete the squad, which will be directed by Giovanni Fidanza.
The 2.HC ranked Tour de la Région Wallonne begins on Monday with a 172 kilometre stage from Brussels to Soignies. Thursday's fourth stage is likely to be the most difficult due to the four first category climbs en route to Houffalize. A number of strong teams will take part, including CSC, Fassa Bortolo, Phonak, Quick. Step and Davitamon-Lotto.
T-Mobile sport director Mario Kummer won the race in 1984 and 1987.
Stage 1 - July 25: Bruxelles (Atomium) - Soignies, 172 km
Stage 2 - July 26: Lessines - Nivelles, 220 km
Stage 3 - July 27: Perwez - Amay, 155 km
Stage 4 - July 28: Chaudfontaine - Houffalize, 198 km
Stage 5 - July 29: Wanze - Namur, 151 km