ProTeam Lotto Soudal wants to race offensively at Tour de la Provence

First race at Lotto Soudal for DS Cherie Pridham.
09 February 2022

From Thursday 10 till Sunday 13 February, Lotto Soudal will be heading to southern France to take part in the Tour de la Provence (2.Pro). Including a prologue and three interesting stages, the time trialists, sprinters, puncheurs and climbers will get their chance to shine. The following six riders will be at the start of the 7th Tour de la Provence: Cedric Beullens, Philippe Gilbert, Kamil Małecki, Michael Schwarzmann, Viktor Verschaeve and Xandres Vervloesem.

For Cherie Pridham, this French stage race means her debut as sports director at Lotto Soudal. Pridham previews the second stage race for Lotto Soudal this season.

“The Tour de la Provence kicks off with a 7-kilometre prologue, which is a fast rolling one and not too technical. For us, it is a nice opportunity to follow the protocol on a TT day, particularly for the guys aiming for a good GC result. Stage one will likely be one for the sprinters, but if the wind picks up in the Camargue, it can become quite tricky. Stage two is a breakaway-puncheur kind of day with the most difficult part in the final 75 kilometres of the stage. The Tour de la Provence ends with the queen stage, including over 3,000 metres of elevation. It’s highly likely that the overall winner will be decided on the Montagne de Lure, with 14 kilometres of climbing at 7%.”

“As always, we will be looking to race tenaciously and we need to look for opportunities in breakaways. We are keen on keeping the momentum from the past weeks. Personally, I am very honoured and immensely proud to be working with such an established team with a big heritage. I’m really excited for my first race and the incredible start of the season has everybody motivated to strive for more results. The spirits are good and there’s a great unity in the team.”

Following the start of his final season as a pro at GP La Marseillaise Philippe Gilbert will further sharpen the shape during the Tour de la Provence.

(Read on below the image.)

“I’ve done some nice training after my first race of the season and I feel good. I am looking forward to be at the start of the Tour de la Provence, a race which I really love and takes place in a beautiful region. More importantly though, the race will allow me to elevate my level of fitness. Although it is only four stages long, the Tour de la Provence almost has it all with opportunities for each type of rider. It will be an interesting four days of racing”, concludes Philippe Gilbert.

Stage schedule Tour de la Provence (10.02 – 13.02)

Thursday 10 February : Prologue Berre L’Étang (7.2 km)

Friday 11 February: Istres – Les Saintes Maries de la Mer (159 km)

Saturday 12 February : Arles – Manosque (187 km)

Sunday 13 February: Manosque – Montagne de Lure (169 km)

In this article

10 Feb 13 Feb

Tour de la Provence

Vlag France France 498.5 km
  1. Nairo Quintana Vlag Colombia 12H 09' 11" Team Arkéa Samsic
  2. Julian Alaphilippe Vlag France 12H 09' 38" Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl Team
  3. Mattias Skjelmose Jensen Vlag Denmark 12H 09' 45" Trek - Segafredo