From Saturday to Wednesday, the World Team will cross its region on the occasion of the Tour de Wallonie with in its roster the winner of edition 2019, Loïc Vliegen, and Biniam Girmay, who returns to Europe for the first time since his historical performance at the Giro.
During the five stages of this 43rd edition, each of the five Walloon provinces will be crossed with hilly parcours and each day a local lap to conclude the stage. The racing is expected to be hard from the opening weekend, with the Mur de Huy as main attraction of the first stage and this for the first time in the history of the TRW.
One day after the finish on this steep climb, seven categorized hills have to be covered between Verviers and Herve, where Loïc Vliegen grew up, among which the mythical climb Côte de La Redoute with 56 kilometer to go.
On Monday towards Rochefort and on Tuesday towards Couvin, respectively four and five categorized climbs are waiting for the riders. On the last day, the hills are replaced by 25 kilometer of cobbles divided in eight sections through the Hainaut province, where the Walloon team is based.
Next to Vliegen, who took his first professional victory in Beyne-Heusay before concluding the stage race as the overall winner 2019, the Walloon World Team has another stage winner in its roster. Dimitri Claeys won in Vielsalm in 2016 by defeating among others Gianni Meersman and Arnaud Démare in the sprint.
The recently crowned Eritrean time trial champion Biniam Girmay will discover the roads of the Tour de Wallonie for the first time, just like Lorenzo Rota, who finished fourth in the Tour of Belgium and second in the Italian championships in June.
Anonther regional rider, Kévin Van Melsen, will participate for the eleventh time. He won the KOM classification in 2014. His compatriots Jan Bakelants (6th in 2010) and Aimé De Gendt complete the selection directed by Valerio Piva and Jean-Marc Rossignon.
Stage 1 (23/07): Temploux – Huy (174,4 km)
Stage 2 (24/07): Verviers – Herve (176,8 km)
Stage 3 (25/07): Visé – Rochefort (195,6 km)
Stage 4 (26/07): Durbuy – Couvin (200,8 km)
Stage 5 (27/07): Le Roeulx – Chapelle-lez-Herlaimont (214,7 km)