Quick-Step Floors will close out their 2017 WorldTour campaign at the inaugural Tour of Guangxi with two of their marquee names leading the way. Julian Alaphilippe is set to head up the team's general classification bid in the six-day event, while Fernando Gaviria will give the squad a favourite for the many sprint finishes on the docket.
Alaphilippe has shown excellent form lately with a strong ride at the Bergen World Championships and a runner-up performance at Il Lombardia. Considering the hilly – but not overly mountainous – stages likely to determine the GC at the Tour of Guangxi, he figures to be in the mix.
Gaviria will look to add to his total of 10 victories on the year, and he'll rely on stalwart lead out man Maximiliano Richeze as he has for most of his other successful sprints so far this season.
"This is the final stop of the season, but we are going to China like it's the first race of the year," said Quick-Step sports director Davide Bramati via a press release. "We are still hungry and the team is strong, so we are hopeful as always. Looking at the roadbook there are some good possibilities for the sprinters and one uphill finish. Maybe also the escapees will have a chance or two next week. We will see how the race unfolds day by day and if there's going to be any opportunity, then we'll try to take it," said sports director Davide Bramati before leaving for China."
Martin Velits will be another notable starter for Quick-Step at the Tour of Guangxi, in what will be the final race of his career. The Slovakian announced his impending retirement on Friday.
Quick-Step Floors for the Tour of Guangxi: Julian Alaphilippe, Rémi Cavagna, Fernando Gaviria, Davide Martinelli, Maximiliano Richeze, Pieter Serry, Martin Velits