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Jurgen Van Den Broeck hopes to have a full tank of form ahead of the Tour de France
Belgian to captain squad in Argentina
Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Lotto-Belisol) will make his 2013 season debut in Argentina at the UCI 2.1-rated Tour de San Luis, taking place January 21-27. The Belgian WorldTour squad is competing at the Tour de San Luis for the first time and Van Den Broeck will be supported by teammates Bart De Clercq, Jens Debusschere, Kenny Dehaes, Joost Van Leijen and Frederik Willems. Mario Aerts will direct the team in Argentina.
The primary 2013 goal for Van Den Broeck, 29, is to crack the Tour de France podium, having come close with fourth place finishes in both 2010 and 2012. Van Den Broeck has made slight changes to his pre-Tour race schedule, which features a start in Argentina for the first time as well as foregoing the Ardennes Classics for a start at the Tour de Romandie (April 23-28) instead.
Lotto-Belisol starts its season on January 14 at the Tropicale Amissa Bongo in Gabon. Sports director Jean-Pierre Heynderickx is heading to Africa with the following six riders: Dirk Bellemakers, Gaëtan Bille, Gert Dockx, Maarten Neyens, Vicente Reynes and Fréderique Robert.
The Belgian squad kicks off its WorldTour campaign in Australia at the Santos Tour Down Under (January 22-27), preceded by the Down Under Classic two days earlier. Included on the Lotto-Belisol roster are two-time Tour Down Under winner André Greipel, Adam Hansen, Greg Henderson, Olivier Kaisen, Jürgen Roelandts, Marcel Sieberg and Tim Wellens. Herman Frison is sports director for the team's stint in Australia.
At the end of January the European season begins with the GP La Marseillaise, followed by the Etoile de Bessèges. Lars Bak, Dirk Bellemakers, Brian Bulgaç, Francis De Greef, Maarten Neyens, Fréderique Robert, Jurgen Van de Walle and Tosh Van der Sande will represent the team in France and will be directed by Marc Wauters and Jean-Pierre Heynderickx.