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Tour de France

Tour de France: DSM brings options to stage hunting bid, Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert rallies around Louis Meintjes

DSM aims for 'aggressive and opportunistic racing' with multi-faceted selection, Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert hopes to carry Giro d'Italia momentum.

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Team DSM and Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert are the latest to join the Tour de France team announcement party.

Team DSM has confirmed a roster that will hunt for stages with a team packing a number of options. Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert is hoping to hit a GC high with Louis Meintjes while battling for the escape groups with its group of young hopefuls.

DSM will be spearheaded by Søren Kragh Andersen and Tiesj Benoot in its hunt for breakaway victories, while Cees Bol will be looking to confirm his potential in the Tour’s sprint finishes.

“We have a really solid team train for the several possible bunch sprint opportunities which we’ll be faced with throughout the race,” said team coach Luke Roberts.

“For the intermediate and mountain stages, our aim will be aggressive and opportunistic racing, playing different cards, and utilizing the strength of the entire team to try and take advantage, like we did last year.”

Team DSM disrupted last summer’s Tour with attacking stage wins and tactical savvy. Although the team’s 2020 talisman Marc Hirschi has now left for UAE-Team Emirates, Kragh Andersen, twice a stage winner in 2020, and Belgian puncheur Benoot will keep the squad in the spotlight this year.

Mark Donovan, Nils Eekhoff, Joris Nieuwenhuis, Casper Pedersen and Jasha Sütterlin complete DSM’s lineup this summer.

Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert heads into its first Tour as a WorldTour squad. It will be looking to repeat its success from the Giro d’Italia, where Taco van der Hoorn stole a memorable breakaway win.

GC hopeful Meintjes returns to the Tour after a three-year hiatus and will lead the squad’s classification push.

“We want to show ourselves to our advantage on as many stages as possible: in the breakaways, in the sprints but also in the mountains around Louis Meintjes,” said team CEO Jean-François Bourlart.

“For that matter, our selection is well balanced in order to achieve our two main objectives: to win a stage and to place Louis as high as possible in the final general classification in Paris, because we must not forget that he entered the final top eight twice.”

Danny van Poppel will lead the squad’s sprint unit, with his brother Boy van Poppel and Jonas Koch set to act as leadout men.

Georg Zimmermann, Lorenzo Rota, Loïc Vliegen, and Belgian veteran Jan Bakelants are go-tos for the breakaways and will ride in support of Meintes in what will be the South African’s fourth Tour de France.