Seven wildcards named for Gent-Wevelgem

It's tough to move up on the narrow Flemish roads.

It's tough to move up on the narrow Flemish roads. (Image credit:

Organisers of Gent-Wevelgem named the full complement of teams to race this year's event, which is set to take place on March 25. In addition to the 18 WorldTour teams, Dutch squad Project 1t4i earned its fourth Classic invitation. The team will also participate in Milan-Sanremo, the Amstel Gold Race and Il Lombardia in addition to the Paris-Nice stage race.

Also named for this year's 235km race from Deinze to Wevelgem are Belgian teams Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator, Accent.Jobs-Willems Verandas and Landbouwkrediet-Euphony, which will also feature in the Amstel Gold Race. Additionally, French squads Team Europcar and Cofidis and the Italian Farnese Vini-Selle Italia team will toe the line in Deinze.

Gent-Wevelgem was expanded in length to include the Casselberg twice, crossing briefly into France in order to do so. As in previous years, the course includes the Kemmelberg twice and then takes in the Monteberg before a relatively flat 34km run to the finish in Wevelgem.

In 2011, the race was contested as a sizable bunch sprint, and it was the one Classic in which Tom Boonen was able to prevail.

Wildcards for Gent-Wevelgem: Project 1t4i, Topsport Vlaanderen-Mercator, Accent.Jobs-Willems Verandas, Landbouwkrediet-Euphony, Team Europcar, Cofidis, Farnese Vini-Selle Italia.

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