Peter Sagan (Tinkoff) will toe the start line at the upcoming Grands Prix Cyclistes Quebec City and Montreal held, respectively, on September 9 and 11 in the Canadian province of Quebec. The world champion will join a strong field that also includes Olympic gold medallist Greg Van Avermaet (BMC) and Tour de France runner-up Romian Bardet (AG2R La Mondiale).
"We're proud that the UCI WorldTour teams are participating so enthusiastically and entering truly first-rate teams," said Marcel Leblanc, Vice-President of the GPCQM in a press release. "With a field including the current world champion, the iconic Peter Sagan, plus key riders from the most recent Tour de France and the Olympics, we're sure to see some great battles. This proves that our races are continuing to prove attractive to the world's cycling élite."
The two races in Quebec mark two of the final races of the WorldTour series, with only two more that follow: Eneco Tour (September 19-25) and Il Lombardia (October 1).
Riders and teams on the start line will not only be looking for the one-day glory in Quebec, but also as one of the last opportunities to fine tune their form ahead of the 257.5km, sprinter-friendly World Championship held in Doha, Qatar on October 16, of which Sagan will Iine up as the defending champion. The Quebec City course offers a challenging 12.6km circuit and racers will complete 16 laps for a total of 201.6km. Montreal's 12.1km course includes a climb over Mont Royal and racer will do 17 laps for a total of 205.7km.
Some of the other riders to watch in Quebec will be defending champions Rigoberto Uran (Cannondale), who won in Quebec City, and Tim Wellens (Lotto Soudal), who won in Montreal last year. Also Michael Matthews and Adam Yates (Orica-BikeExchange), Tom Boonen and Julian Alaphilippe (Etixx-QuickStep), Geraint Thomas (Team Sky), Mike Woods (Cannondale), Bauke Mollema and Ryder Hesjedal (Trek-Segafredo) and Bryan Coquard (Direct Energie) will be in the mix.
2016 Grands Prix Cyclistes des Quebec City and Montreal teams:
AG2R La Mondiale: Romain Bardet (FRA), Alexis Vuillermoz (FRA) and Hugo Houle (CAN)
Astana Pro Team: Fabio Aru (ITA) and Jakob Fuglsang (DAN)
BMC Racing Team: Greg Van Avermaet (BEL) and Joey Rosskopf (USA)
Cannondale-Drapac Pro Cycling Team: Rigoberto Uran (COL), Tom-Jelte Slagter (NED) et Mike Woods (CAN)
Etixx–QuickStep: Julian Alaphilippe (FRA) and Tom Boonen (BEL)
FDJ: Anthony Roux (FRA)
IAM Cycling: Jarlinson Pantano (COL) and Martin Elmiger (SUI)
Lampre-Merida: Rui Costa (POR) and Diego Ulissi (ITA)
Lotto Soudal: Tim Wellens (BEL) and Tony Gallopin (FRA)
Movistar Team: Jon Izagirre (ESP) and Jesus Herrada (ESP)
ORICA BikeExchange: Adam Yates (GBR) and Michaël Matthews (AUS)
Team Dimension Date: Daniel Teklehaimanot (ERI) and Serge Pauwels (BEL)
Team Giant-Alpecin: Simon Geschke (GER) and Laurens Ten Dam (NED)
Team Katusha: Ilnur Zakarin (RUS) and Jurgen Van den Broeck (BEL)
Team Lotto NL-Jumbo: Wilco Kelderman (NED) and Moreno Hofland (NED)
Team Sky: Geraint Thomas (GRB) and Lars Petter Nordhaug (NOR)
Tinkoff: Peter Sagan (SVK) and Rafal Majka (POL)
Trek-Segafredo: Ryder Hesjedal (CAN) and Bauke Mollema (NED)
Bora-Argon 18: Emanuel Buchmann (GER) and Sam Bennett (IRL)
Team Direct Energie: Antoine Duchesne (CAN), Bryan Coquard (FRA) and Thomas Voeckler (FRA)
Team Canada: Bruno Langlois, Guillaume Boivin and Ryan Roth
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