A dynamic JLT Condor squad will take to the start of the Tour de Beauce in Quebec on 13th June. Manager, John Herety is confident the team, made up of the stage race riders, is capable of animating every stage of North America’s oldest cycle race.
Fresh from a strong performance at the Tour of Japan Ed Laverack will be joined by Edmund Bradbury, Oliver Wood, Tom Stewart and sprinters Robert McCarthy, Ali Slater, Matt Gibson.
The five day event will takes place in and around Quebec City and Beauceville near to the border of America and it will be the first time JLT Condor have raced the Tour de Beauce.
The race’s position in the calendar ahead of the National Road Race Championships on the 1st July, makes it ideal as a form builder ahead of one of the most important races of the season.
Team manager, John Herety, explained there wasn’t a vast array of stage races available in June. The Tour de Beauce allows riders to continue to work on their teamwork, communication skills and continue to build towards their final and toughest race of the the season, The Tour of Britain.
“The race offers a mix of fast flat finishes and mountainous days. We have a good mix of riders who are specialists in both and I believe we can produce a strong result in the overall competition.”
Stage 2 – Mont Megantic – 169km
The Queen Stage of the Tour de Beauce features the ascension of the iconic Mont-Mégantic National Park, a 6-km climb averaging 18% grade on the highest elevation road in the Province of Quebec. Last month, Ed Laverack proved his climbing ability at the Tour of Japan, ascending the similarly steep Mount Fuji fastest of his teammates and finishing inside the top 15. He will likely feature on the stage.
Stage 3A – Saint Prosper Time Trial – 20km
Stage 3 is split into two races, the first is a time trial. Following top ten performances in the individual time trials at various stage races throughout the season, Tom Stewart is one of the favourites for this stage, along with Edmund Bradbury. Expect to see key contenders complete the course in just over 20 minutes.
Stage 3B – Saint Prosper Stage – 78km
The riders will then compete in a shorter stage race in the evening. There is no let up on stage three and it is likely performances by riders on these two stages will crucial in determining the overall race winner. The stage finishes with a climb up to the finish, perfect for Tom Stewart and Ollie Wood.
Stage 4 – Criterium Ville de Quebec – 70km
“As one of the World’s strongest criterium teams, we’ll be targeting the stage on 16th June in downtown Quebec. After a month of racing the Tour Series, Matt Gibson is in great form for this stage”, explained John Herety
Unlike most UCI stage races, each day starts and finishes in the same location rather than travel point-to-point. Each stage features laps of a large course. Riders will complete 6-8 laps of courses that will be 16km-20km in length.
Wednesday 13th June – Stage 1, Saint-Georges – Saint-Georges – 177km
Thursday 14th June – Stage 2, Lac-Mégantic – Parc national du Mont Mégantic – 169km
Friday 15th June – Stage 3a, Saint Propser, Individual Time Trial – 20km
Friday 15th June – Stage 3b, Saint-Georges – Notre-Dame-des-Pins – 77km
Saturday 16th June – Stage 4, Quebec City Criterium – 70km
Sunday 17th June – Stage 5, Ville de Saint-Georges – 122km
Stage 1, 2, begins at 10.00 (EDT) / 14.00 (BST)
Stage 3 A, begins at 09.00 (EDT) / 13.00 (BST)
Stage 3 B, begins at 17.30 (EDT) / 21.30 (BST)
Stage 4, beings at 13.30 (EDT) / 17.30 (BST)
Stage 5 begins at 11.00 (EDT) / 15.00 (BST)
Former JLT Condor rider, Chris Lawless won stage 3b in 2017, the performance highlighted his talent to Team Sky who snapped up the rider soon after.
The race has an illustrious list of winners in its history. Riders from American based team have claimed most of the victories with Tour de France stage winner, Svein Tuft the last Canadian to win the race overall in 2008. Tuft returns to the race a decade after his first win.
Other winners of note are multiple Tour de France finishers, Levi Leipheimer and Jonathan Vaughters as well as Australian former Team Sky rider, Michael Rogers.