Team Stradalli – Bike Aid to Tour of Qinghai Lake Again – a True Peak of the Season
Tuesday, January 3, 2017 12:53:21 PM EST5EDT
Team Stradalli – Bike Aid to Tour of Qinghai Lake again – a true peak of the season
The race also known as The Tour de France of Asia takes place in some of the most astonishing places on earth. The Tour of Qinghai Lake leads through the highlands of the Chinese region “Qinghai” near Tibet and along one of the biggest salt lakes on earth.
After participating the last two years 2014 and 2015, this will be the 3rd year in a row in which Team Stradalli – Bike Aid has received invitation to this race. The 2016 Tour of Qinghai Lake will be a very special edition as it is the 15thanniversary of the Tour. To be invited again to this race means a lot to the team as the Tour of Qinghai Lake is the most important race in Asia and ranked with HC category in the calendar of UCI. This is the highest category in rankings apart from World Tour races. Qinghai Lake will again give the team the opportunity to race side by side with big teams such as Lampre – Merida of the World Tour during the same time as the Tour de France in July.
The team has been proving their strength over the year against World Tour teams since the beginning of the year. The team first travelled to Challenge Mallorca where they were a constant factor in breakaway moves. The team then continued their aggressive racing style at Vuelta Andalucia Ruta del Sol. The team recently grabbed a 22nd place finish at UCI 1.HC Rund um den Finanzplatz Eschborn – Frankfurt, widely known as one of the hardest races in Germany and Europe.
Florent Horeau, who will fill the role of head sport director for Stradalli – Bike Aid in Qinghai Lake, said preparations for Qinghai Lake are the most important for the team.
“The whole schedule and planning of the season is targeted to this race. We have been able to show good performances in the past two years with many Top – 10 results, but this year we want to achieve the next level and be focused on this race,” Horeau said.
Stradalli – Bike Aid will continue using the carbon Aversa frame for Qinghai lake. The Aversa frame has proven itself over a wide variety of terrain and racing conditions and will suit the racers needs for the toughest stage race in Asia. The team fully believes in their capabilities to impact the race and will be using the best technology to do so.
Especially with the new rider from Rwanda, Jean-Bosco Nsengimana, team Stradalli – Bike Aid want to play an important role in the general classification of the race. To achieve this goal it is necessary to be perfectly organized and to have a square schedule for every rider to be in top-shape at this time.
Horeau said another goal will be to fight with Meron Teshome from Eritrea for stage-wins.
“Meron already proved lot of times that he is a fast sprinter.” Horeau said. “He has been especially good this year. He already beat one of his biggest competitors a couple of times in the sprint. That gives us confidence and hope to also play a good role in the daily sprints.”
Not only in terms of sport the Tour of Qinghai Lake will be a highlight of the season. The race is well-known for its unique location on altitude and given the fact that the stages will be held at altitudes between 2.400m and 3.800m this will be a very special challenge for the body and also the mind of each and every rider. The team recently traveled to the Tour of Eritrea where they raced and excelled in similar altitudes after preparing on Alpe d’huez in France and STEPS training facility in Germany. Nevertheless the racing will still be tough and the riders will be rewarded for their agonies with breath-taking views and landscapes at the top of this unique scenery that is quite impossible to find the right words for.
In terms of media, the Tour of Qinghai Lake is a real eye-catcher! Every stage will be live broadcasted in the Chinese TV channel CCTV 5 ensuring huge media coverage as well as the reports in the countless daily newspapers. A peak of about 2 million spectators per day on the race roads well-rounding this awesome event and makes it to a unique platform for riders, teams and also the sponsors to present to the Chinese and Asian markets!
We hope that we will be also able to bring you again breath-taking pictures and stories from the Tour of Qinghai Lake also in 2016!