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Evenepoel set for time trial only at European Championships

European time trial champion Remco Evenepoel (Deceuninck-QuickStep) races against the clock on stage 3 of the 2020 Vuelta a San Juan in Argentina
European time trial champion Remco Evenepoel (Deceuninck-QuickStep) races against the clock on stage 3 of the 2020 Vuelta a San Juan in Argentina (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)

Current European time trial champion Remco Evenepoel (Deceuninck-QuickStep) is expected to attempt to defend his title at the 2020 UEC Road European Championships in Plouay, France, at the end of August, but won't ride the road race, according to reports in the Belgian media.

While the men's individual time trial is to take place on August 24, on the opening day of the championships, Evenepoel said that he was unlikely to take part in the men's road race on August 26.

"The time trial and the road race follow each other a little too quickly," the 20-year-old Belgian said, according to Het Laatste Nieuws, on Wednesday. "Not that the combination is totally impossible, but I also have to think about the future."

Evenepoel's future race programme beyond the European Championships includes the rescheduled Tirreno-Adriatico, from September 7-14, while the young Deceuninck-QuickStep rider will make his Grand Tour debut at the Giro d'Italia the following month (October 3-25).

Evenepoel is first set to recommence his 2020 season at the Vuelta a Burgos, which runs from July 28-August 1, and will mark his Belgian WorldTour team's return to competition following professional cycling's shutdown due to the coronavirus pandemic.

He'll follow that with the Tour de Pologne, from August 5-9, and then prepare for the European Championships time trial in Brittany.

Belgian time trial champion Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma), meanwhile, is not expected to go up against Evenepoel in Plouay.

"The Critérium du Dauphiné [August 12-16], the Belgian time trial championships [August 20], the Tour de France [August 29-September 20]. That is Wout van Aert's programme. He's not expected to be doing the European Championship in Plouay," Jumbo-Visma's communications manager, Ard Bierens, told Dutch cycling website Wielerflits.nl on Wednesday, while Van Aert will restart his season at Strade Bianche on August 1.