Dimension Data today released their line-up for the second monument of the year, the Tour of Flanders, that starts in Antwerp, Belgium on Sunday.
Seven DiData riders will participate in the 102nd edition of the 266km race that finishes in Oudenaarde.
South African talent will make up most of the group, including previous SA National road champion Jaco Venter, Johann van Zyl, former Tour de Langkawi winner Ryan Gibbons, Nic Dougall and Jay Thomson.
This is due to the African team’s classic specialists suffering a couple of injuries in recent weeks.
Sport director JP Heynderickx said they were looking forward to the race despite not being able to count on a full-strength classics squad.
“I know the riders will fight like a team to get a good result,” Heynderickx said.
“I am pretty sure we can keep the momentum going after some positive results in the last classics and fight for a top 10 on Sunday.”
Belgian Julien Vermote, who seems to be in top form this season as he almost won the Kuurne-Bruxelles-Kuurne and finished 15th in the Gent-Wevelgem last weekend, will lead the team.
Completing the squad and also playing an important role on Sunday will be Norwegian Edvald Boasson Hagen, who has steadily been building on his form after gallbladder surgery early in the season.
Edvald Boasson Hagen
Johann van Zyl