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UAE Team Emirates test young guns in Opening Weekend

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Sebastian Molano (UAE Team Emirates) wins stage 3 in Tour Colombia

Sebastian Molano (UAE Team Emirates) wins stage 3 in Tour Colombia (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Stage 5 winner Jasper Philipsen slaps hands with fans on the way to the finish on Willunga Hill

Stage 5 winner Jasper Philipsen slaps hands with fans on the way to the finish on Willunga Hill (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Jasper Philipsen on the stage 5 podium at the Tour Down Under

Jasper Philipsen on the stage 5 podium at the Tour Down Under (Image credit: Tim de Waele/Getty Images)
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Sebastian Molano (UAE Team Emirates) steps onto the podium stage after winning stage 3 at Tour Colombia

Sebastian Molano (UAE Team Emirates) steps onto the podium stage after winning stage 3 at Tour Colombia (Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Sven Erik Bystrom (UAE Team Emirates)

Sven Erik Bystrom (UAE Team Emirates) (Image credit: Bettini Photo)

With Fernando Gaviria and Alexander Kristoff focused elsewhere, UAE Team Emirates have turned to their next generation of riders for Opening Weekend. Belgian neo-pro Jasper Philipsen - who won a stage at the Tour Down Under in January - will lead the line in both Omloop Het Nieuwsblad and Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne.

"It will be good to have top 10s on both days," team director Allan Peiper told Cyclingnews in Gent on Friday.

"Firstly, Philipsen is a young guy but he knows how to handle himself in these races. He knows all the climbs and he knows how to position himself. Sven Erik Bystrom is always in the role of a helper, so it would be good for him to try and have his own race. They're our two for Omloop. If one of them can ride top 10 that would be great."