Belgium's Jurgen Van den Broeck is confident Omega Pharma-Lotto can add to its successful start to the Ardennes Classics at both Flèche Wallonne and Liège-Bastogne-Liège this week. On Sunday at Amstel Gold, Van den Broeck worked at service of teammate and race-winner Philippe Gilbert.
27-year-old Van den Broeck indicated to Sporza that he feels he will be in an even stronger position than that which saw him ride to 20th position at Amstel - a marked improvement on his previous participations at the race. Gilbert's contention that Flèche Wallone may not suit him an indication perhaps that his compatriot will be given the opportunity to lead on Wednesday.
"I hope I'll be there in the final of La Flèche Wallonne and Liège-Bastogne-Liège, and hopefully our team can win one of those races," Van den Broeck told Sporza. "I feel good. The courses of those races suit me better than Amstel."
Van den Broeck is using the Ardennes Classics as part of a steady build-up to what will be his first Tour de France as captain of the Omega Pharma-Lotto squad. Although still two months away from the Tour, Flèche Wallonne will give him a chance to assess the condition and study the racing style of the men he hopes to challenge come July.
"I am better than the same period last year and I'm definitely on track for the Tour," he said. This week, I will have to see how strong [Alberto] Contador and [Alejandro] Valverde are. In this field, the Muur de Huy will say a lot."