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Belkin ready for more success in 2014

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Bauke Mollema and Laurens ten Dams smile for the camera

Bauke Mollema and Laurens ten Dams smile for the camera
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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The Belkin riders on their 2014 Bianchi bikes

The Belkin riders on their 2014 Bianchi bikes
(Image credit: Twitter / Radsport)
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Sep Vanmarke points the way ahead for Belkin

Sep Vanmarke points the way ahead for Belkin
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Laurens ten Dam (Belkin)

Laurens ten Dam (Belkin)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Theo Bos (Belkin)

Theo Bos (Belkin)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Belkin team manager Richard Plugge and team leader Bauke Mollema

Belkin team manager Richard Plugge and team leader Bauke Mollema
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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The 2014 Belkin riders pose for a group photo

The 2014 Belkin riders pose for a group photo
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Theo Bos (Belkin)

Theo Bos (Belkin)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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The 2014 Belkin line-up

The 2014 Belkin line-up
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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The Belkin riders showed off their new Santini kit

The Belkin riders showed off their new Santini kit
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Sep Vanmarcke (Belkin)

Sep Vanmarcke (Belkin)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Steven Kruijswijk (Belkin)

Steven Kruijswijk (Belkin)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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The team presentation had a green theme

The team presentation had a green theme
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Maarten Wynants (Belkin)

Maarten Wynants (Belkin)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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The 2014 Belkin team

The 2014 Belkin team
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Jonathan Hivert (Belkin)

Jonathan Hivert (Belkin)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Arthur van der Rest of Belkin

Arthur van der Rest of Belkin
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Team Belkin take in the sun on the south coast of Spain

Team Belkin take in the sun on the south coast of Spain
(Image credit: Belkin Pro Cycling)
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by Guoqiang SongTour of Hainan

by Guoqiang SongTour of Hainan
(Image credit: Belkin Pro Cycling)
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Robert Gesink (Belkin)

Robert Gesink (Belkin)
(Image credit: Sirotti)
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Belkin's Graeme Brown and Theo Bos make an exchange

Belkin's Graeme Brown and Theo Bos make an exchange
(Image credit: wouterroosenboom.nl)
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Bauke Mollema will co-lead the team in the Tour de France

Bauke Mollema will co-lead the team in the Tour de France
(Image credit: Belkin Pro Cycling)

The Belkin team held its official presentation in the Netherlands, broadcast live online, on Monday morning, confirming that the Tour de France, the cobbled Classics and the Tour of California will again be the Dutch team's major goals in 2014.

The riders showed off the team's green and black jersey and answered questions from online viewers on stage, with Robert Gesink and the other riders in Australia for the Tour Down Under linking up with the presentation via internet.

Belkin won 39 races in 2013 and impressed at the Tour de France, with Bauke Mollema and Laurens ten Dam shining at the Tour de France. Mollema went onto finish sixth overall after taking second at the Tour de Suisse.

The team has added three riders to its roster for 2014, with Lars Boom and Sep Vanmarcke again the leaders for the cobbled Classics. Team manager Richard Plugge reaffirmed the team's goals for 2014 and laid out plans for growth and development after securing Belkin as a title sponsor in time for last year's Tour de France. The team will ride Bianchi bikes in 2014, with Santini on board as the new clothing sponsor.

"2013 it was a year of mixed emotions. In the early season, without a sponsor, we were down more or less in the gutter, but then Belkin came along in the summer and we were flying high," Plugge explained.

"It was a breakthrough moment. We presented a sponsor from outside the sport and the bright lights of that good moment gave us momentum for the Tour de France. We had a lot of highlights during the season; we had good team energy, got good results with 39 wins and we created a platform for growth, as a team and as a company.

"We want to inspire people in the Tour de France but also in other races. We want to bringing cycling back to the hearts and minds of people and I promise we will do that with Team Belkin in 2014."

Mollema wants more in 2014

Bauke Mollema said he was ready to repeat his impressive 2013 season and would again target the Tour de France.

"I think I'm still the same as a person but there's more media attention and more fans interested in me, who are hoping for something from me. It's nice and shows what we did as a team in the Tour," he said.

"Last winter I did a lot more intensive work and I did the same in the last months. I'll start racing in February, two weeks later than last year but my programme is similar to last year and I'm looking forward to getting racing."

Las Boom will share team leadership in the Classics with Sep Vanmarcke.

"For Sep (Vanmarcke) maybe Flanders is the big one but for me it's Paris-Roubaix and I think it suits me the best," Boom said. "It's only one race a year and so it is special. I hope this year it will rain a lot and so it will be even more special."

"The Tour de France was really special for the team and we did a great team effort with Bauke. With the cobbled stages (this year), it'll be good for me. It's important to be there."

Vanmarcke crashed at Tirreno-Adriatico last year but fought back to finish second at Paris-Roubaix. He hopes for better fortune this year and went training on the new route of the Tour of Flanders at the weekend.

"I had a big crash in Tirreno and all training work was for nothing. The only goal left was Roubaix and being second was really good, a dream come true, but I was disappointed because I was so close to winning," he said.

Former track sprinter Theo Bos will again hope to provide a double-digit number of victories in the sprints, while Wilco Kelderman will lead the team in the Giro d'Italia along with Steven Kruijswijk, who is back on form after a series of injuries.

New signings include Frenchman Jonathan Hivert, young sprinter Barry Markus, plus talented young Dutchman Nick Van der Lijke.

Following the presentation, the riders gave further interviews and the riders went out for a mass ride with fans organised via Twitter.

The team will makes its WorldTour debut at the Santos Tour Down Under on Tuesday. Robert Gesink, Jack Bobridge and Graeme Brown lead the squad in Australia.