Belkin are still clinging to the hope that Lars Boom might be able to return to racing before the cobbles Classics end in just over two weeks. Boom has been out of action since he fractured his elbow in a crash on the second stage of Paris-Nice.
"We are hopeful, but we are also realistic. We have to see. I can't really give you a 100% answer whether it's a yes or a no," Belkin team manager Richard Plugge told Cyclingnews at the start of E3 Harelbeke.
Boom was meant to be racing this weekend at E3 Harelbeke and Gent-Wevelgem. He didn't take the start in Harelbeke, but the team remain hopeful that he can recover enough to ride Gent-Wevelgem. He has been out on the bike over the last couple of days, but Plugge admits that the pavé is an unknown quantity for Boom with the injury.
"He's training a lot already. He's done some hours yesterday and the day before," said Plugge. "Today He is training again today and he will have some tests and then we will see. We can't predict. Cobbles are something else than asphalt and breaking an elbow is a painful experience. We have to see how he manages."
If Boom does make it back he will form an integral part of the classics team and will be looking to improve on his 11th at the Tour of Flanders, and assisting Sep Vanmarcke in his bid for glory at Paris-Roubaix a week later.
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