Lotto–Soudal has been part of the professional peloton since 1985. This Belgian team’s wins are often during either the one-day classics or the big stage races. Hugely successful sprinter André Greipel rode for the team from 2011 until 2018 and bagged a host of wins, but he now rides for Team Arkea Samsic. Luckily there are other big names who will doubtless bring home some wins for the team.
The main riders at team Lotto–Soudal: Caleb Ewan
André Greipel may have left the team, but with recent acquisition Caleb Ewan on board, the team still has a serious sprinter. He’s only 24, so he’s got plenty to learn, but he already has some major wins to his name. He has won stages in both the Giro d’Italia and the Tour of Spain. He has also won seven stages in his home race: the Tour Down Under. In 2018 he was second in Milan–San Remo. In 2019, he will ride both the Giro and the Tour de France, where his team will do its best to put him in the best position to win the sprint.
Tim Wellens has been riding in the UCI World Tour peloton since 2012, and has a long list of impressive victories on his palmares. His first-ever major win was winning the general classification of the Eneco Tour in 2014. Since then he has won a good mix of victories in the general classification of stage races and one-day classics such as the Gran Prix Montreal and the Brabantse Pijl. He shows his best form when riding on the attack in hilly landscap, which is why he’s a man to watch during the Amstel Gold Race and Liège–Bastogne–Liège.
Thomas de Gendt
Whenever there’s an attack during one of the Grand Tours and Thomas de Gendt is riding, there’s a good chance he is in the breakaway. His attacking style of riding has brought him stage wins in the Giro, the Tour de France and the Vuelta (Tour of Spain). His best performance is without a doubt his impressive podium position in the general classification of the Giro d’Italia in 2012, when he also won the stage up the Stelvio. His aggressive style in the mountains also means he is often high in the climbers‘ classification. In 2018 he was King of the Mountains in the Tour of Spain. In 2019 he is riding all three Grand Tours, and will certainly be on the attack in all three.
Tiesj Benoot is starting to show his talent more and more. In 2014, he made his debut at the highest level of professional cycling and since then he has performed well in a few minor races. He has been fourth in the Tirreno–Adriatico and 5th in the Tour of Poland. He shows his best when riding the one-day classics. In 2018 he won the Strade Bianche and in the past he has done well in the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad and the Grand Prix de Montréal. In 2019 he will ride many of the classics such as the Amstel Gold Race to prepare for the Tour de France. He fell and cut his knee badly during the Strade Bianche 2019, but seems to be well on the road to recovery.
Adam Hansen is 37 years old, which makes him a true veteran. He has won stages in the Giro and the Vuelta. We know him mainly as the rider who has ridden 20 consecutive Grand Tours—he began that challenge in the Vuelta in 2011 and his run ended in the Giro in 2018. He readily admits he’d rather ride a Grand Tour than have to train. These days, however, his role is that of tough and trustworthy support rider who can reel in all the breakaway riders if necessary. Though you can also find him in a breakaway himself once in a while.