Ceylin del Carmen Alvarado's Mundial Ciclismo team has become Plantur-Pura ahead of the next round of the Women's WorldTour at the Classic Brugge-De Panne on Thursday. The team is comprised of many of the world's top cyclo-cross specialists who will race during the spring and summer months on the road.
“The main goal remains to complete an interesting road program towards the new cyclo-cross season. However, with the men we now know that a well thought-out combination between road cycling and cyclo-cross is doable. That is why also our women will get the chance to race some of the spring classics," said team manager Philip Roodhooft.
On Thursday, the team will be at the start of the Classic Brugge-De Panne in Belgium for their first race in Plantur-Pura kits.
The team have also received invitations to compete in Flanders Classics races: Gent- Wevelgem and the Tour of Flanders, along with the first women's Paris- Roubaix, although the event has been called off due to COVID-19 and reports suggest an end-of-season October date.
This season, the team will also race at Baloise Ladies Tour in July and the Ladies Tour of Norway in August. Following a select road program, the riders will return to their various cyclo-cross teams to prepare for the 2021-2022 season.
“These six races will be quite an exploration for the Plantur-Pura women, results aren’t of paramount importance. But we don’t start our road cycling campaign unprepared or without ambitions. The team completed a full-scale training camp and two reconnaissances, and with Heidi Van De Vijver we have a new, experienced sports director in our ranks," Roodhooft said.
The team includes former cyclo-cross World Champions Carmen Alvarado and Sanne Cant along with Manon Bakker, Kiona Crabbé, Julie de Wilde, Yara Kastelijn, Jinse Peeters, Laura Süßemilch, Marthe Truyen, Aniek van Alphen, Karen Verhestraeten, Annemarie Worst, Inge van der Heijden.
“If this introduction is satisfactory, we will expand the team roster in 2022 with a few specific road cyclists. This way we will be able to complete a more extensive road program, use our cyclo-cross riders in a more targeted manner and eventually copy the multidisciplinary concept of Alpecin-Fenix – since we also have MTB talent in the team with Alvarado, Eibl and Pieterse.”
The team announced last month that Heidi Van De Vijver joined the squad as a director. “I am really looking forward to this exploration and discovery together with our ladies. I found myself in a professional environment at Plantur-Pura. It’s going to be a challenge for both myself and the ladies. The level of our riders on training camp pleasantly surprised me, so we are already curious about our season start in Bruges - De Panne.”
14 riders.Across different Cyclocross Teams.Exploring new roads.Together.#PlanturPura #UCITeam #WomensTeam #Plantur21 #LangeHaare #TrespaPuraNFC pic.twitter.com/VLZo9vvmlKMarch 24, 2021
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