Deceuninck – Quick-Step return to Scheldeprijs with young Fabio Jakobsen in pursuit of repeat victory tomorrow, with the race starting in Terneuzen for the second consecutive year. The preliminary list of participants going against the Dutch sprinter include many of the peloton’s fastest, including Kittel, Greipel, Ackermann and Philipsen.
Last year’s winner Jakobsen will race with the support of, amongst others, Alvaro Hodeg, Iljo Keisse and Florion Senechal in his quest for a second consecutive victory. The WorldTour’s other Belgian team, Lotto Soudal, is counting on the fast finish of Adam Blythe and the experience of Brian van Goethem racing on home terrain.
German champion Pascal Ackermann (BORA-hansgrohe) finished just behind Jakobsen last year and will be looking to go one better this year. But there’ll be plenty of competition if the race ends in a bunch sprint, including his countrymen Marcel Kittel (Team Katusha Alpecin) and André Greipel (Team Arkea-Samsic). With five wins, Kittel is the record holder at Scheldeprijs, while in the case of Greipel, however, the race has up to this point never gone in his favour.
Belgian fans will be looking forward to the sprinting speed of the young Jasper Philipsen (UAE Team Emirates), while Edward Theuns carries the hopes of Trek-Segafredo for a strong finish. Team Sky counts on Norwegian Kristoffer Halvorsen, supported by a familiar face in the Flanders Classics, Luke Rowe. Another fast finisher comes in the shape of Team Sunweb’s Maximilian Walscheid who races alongside Cees Bol, who has already proved in Nokere that he is fast over the final few hundred metres.
Michael Van Staeyen (Roompot-Charles) is looking forward to a race on familiar territory. Just like Belgians Boeckmans (Vital Concept - B&B Hotels), Dehaes (Wallonie Bruxelles) and Dupont (Wanty-Gobert Cycling Team), he can show his skills on Churchilllaan in Schoten. That is, only if they first survive the battle with the wind between Terneuzen and Schoten.