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Matthews to share lead in E3 Harelbeke and Gent-Wevelgem

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Michael Matthews at the Team Sunweb training camp

Michael Matthews at the Team Sunweb training camp (Image credit: Team Sunweb)
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Michael Matthews celebrating his win over Greg Van Avermaet in Rodez

Michael Matthews celebrating his win over Greg Van Avermaet in Rodez (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Søren Kragh Andersen (Team Sunweb) crashed but raced on

Søren Kragh Andersen (Team Sunweb) crashed but raced on (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)
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Edward Theuns on his Team Sunweb debut

Edward Theuns on his Team Sunweb debut (Image credit: Tim de Waele/Getty Images Sport)
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Ellen van Dijk (Sunweb)

Ellen van Dijk (Sunweb) (Image credit: Tim de Waele/TDWSport.com)

Michael Matthews will share the lead with Søren Kragh Andersen and Edward Theuns at E3 Harelbeke on Friday, and Gent-Wevelgem on Sunday. Matthews has only completed one race so far this season but was able to claim a top-ten at Milan-San Remo last weekend.  

Ellen van Dijk, who won the Omloop van het Hageland last month, and Lucinda Brand are both set for the women’s Gent-Wevelgem, which also takes place Sunday.

In E3 Harelbeke, on Friday, March 23, Matthews and Andersen will be co-leaders. “We will have to ride alertly all day and be in good position, especially in the final with the Paterberg, Oude Kwaremont and Karnemelkbeekstraat in succession,”  Marc Reef told the Belga news agency. “We have to make sure our leaders Michael and Søren are in the front group that is going to compete for the victory.”

Matthews suffered a fractured shoulder at Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, but was able to finish seventh in Milan-San Remo. Andersen is returning to racing after abandoning Tirreno-Adriatico due to illness. They will be supported by Phil Bauhaus, Roy Curvers, Lennard Hofstede, Tom Stamsnijder, and Mike Teunissen.

Two days later, on Sunday, March 25, Matthews and Theuns will share the captaincy in Gent-Wevelgem.The young Belgian was sixth in Omloop. Nikias Arndt will replace Bauhaus in this race.