The Professional Continental squad has struggled for results in the cobbled classics and lost Edvald Boasson Hagen to a broken collarbone in a fall at Gent-Wevelgem. However the South African team have at least tried to animate several races in the past few weeks with Brammeier himself on the attack at several stages in the Three Days of De Panne.
“To be honest it’s plain to see that its not gone as well as we had hoped it would. We’ve not had any big results yet but we’ve had a lot of bad luck and some problems with punctures in the first few races and that took us a while to correct. Then we lost Edvald and Goss has been out,” the Irishman told Cyclingnews
“We’ve still got some strong guys left like Gerald Ciolek, so we’re going to throw everything in for the next few races. We’ve nothing to lose. We have so many possible winners so there are still some options left.”
MTN – Qhubeka signed a number of riders in the off-season, including Brammeier, Matthew Goss, Steve Cummings Boasson Hagen and American Tyler Farrar. So far only Cummings has picked up a win from the new recruits but Brammeier that with time the fresh signings can gel with the rest of the squad. At the weekend Louis Meintjes won the Settimana Internazionale Coppi e Bartali stage race in Italy.
“We’re a new team and it’s taking time to click but once the ball starts rolling we won’t be the underdogs for much longer. It’s just taking a bit of time to get things going. There’s still time to turn things around,” Brammeier said.
On a personal level Brammeier is simply excited to be taking part in the Belgian races he thrives on.
“My form has been getting better and better. I was sick after the opening weekend and it took me nearly two weeks to get healthy again. Every race I’m getting better and better and I’ve been able to go a little bit deeper in the races and do more for the team, which is what I’m here to do.”
“I’m made up. I’ve always dreamed of winning these races and the programme I’ve had this year with this team is the best I’ve ever had. I can’t be happier and it’s a great group of guys.”
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Daniel Benson is the Editor in Chief at both Cyclingnews.com and BikePerfect.com. Based in the UK, he has worked within cycling for almost 15 years, and he joined the Cyclingnews team in 2008 as the site's first UK-based Managing Editor. In that time, he has reported on over a dozen editions of the Tour de France, several World Championships, the Tour Down Under, Spring Classics, and the London 2012 Olympic Games. With the help of the excellent editorial team, he runs the coverage on Cyclingnews and has interviewed leading figures in the sport including UCI Presidents and Tour de France winners.
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