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Cycling | SA Cycling

Serge Pauwels © Getty Images

Pauwels leads strong DiData team at Dauphine



Team Dimension Data for Qhubeka will have a dynamic team at this year's Criterium du Dauphine, which starts in Valence this Sunday.

Serge Pauwels, Edvald Boasson Hagen and Steve Cummings will be the African team's key figures at the World Tour event.

A strong African quartet consisting of Amanuel Ghebreigzabhier, Nic Dlamini, Jay Thomson and Johann van Zyl will complete DiData's line-up.

"Dauphiné is one of my favourite races on the calendar. It’s always a hard race but as a team we have been successful there already in the past, especially in 2016 with a stage win of Edvald and Steve. This year the course looks even more challenging than other editions with some short but intense mountain stages towards the end of the week. I am looking forward to a week of proper racing and we would like to achieve some good results. At the same time the Dauphiné is the best race to streamline my shape for the Tour de France," Pauwels commented ahead of the race.

The Criterium du Dauphine is a prestigious event in its own right, but is also the undoubted dress rehearsal to the upcoming Tour de France.

The race starts with a prologue followed by seven road stages, concluding with a Mont Blanc summit finish next Sunday, 10 June.

This year the Dauphine will really show its teeth with only the prologue and stage three time trial avoiding the mountainous terrain.

The final four stages all conclude with the finish line perched up in the clouds. And stage 1 and 2, while they can be considered the easier stages, still take the peloton over no less than 12 categorised climbs between them.

Line-up

Serge Pauwels

Edvald Boasson Hagen

Steve Cummings

Jay Thomson

Johann van Zyl

Nic Dlamini

Amanuel Ghebreigzabhier



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