Before returning to the pelotons on Sunday for the Bretagne Classic, Julian Alaphilippe will be the headliner of the first Critérium de Saint-Amand-les-Eaux. An honor shared with Marion Rousse…
Back-to-school time is about to ring for Julian Alaphilippe. Most seen in the race since the world championships in Scotland, the leader of the Soudal-Quick Step will indeed be at the start of the Bretagne Classic, Sunday, in Plouay where he will meet many leaders of the peloton including Matthieu van der Poel, Mads Pedersen, Christophe Laporte or Jasper Philipsen.
While waiting for Sunday, Julian Alaphilippe will put on the helmet this Friday in a more relaxed setting. The double world champion will indeed be at the start of the Ronde des Sources, the first pro cycling criterium in Saint-Amand-les-Eaux. In total, no less than 50 riders will be at the start, including around forty French and Belgian pros. Alongside the former yellow jersey of the Tour de France, Valentin Madouas, Nacer Bouhanni or Florian Sénéchal will also be there and will start at 6 p.m. for 32 laps of a 3.1 kilometer circuit.
French Champion at Saint-Amand-les-Eaux
And Julian Alaphilippe will not come to Saint-Amand-les-Eaux alone. He will indeed be accompanied by Marion Rousse who will officiate at the microphone. The city of the North reminds her of good memories: in 2012 she had won her greatest career victory there, the title of champion of France.
The presence of Julian Alaphilippe and Marion Rousse is a first success for the organizers. “In France, the criteriums are fewer and fewer, 15 during this year 2023 against nearly 70 after Tour de France in previous years (before Covid). Nevertheless, 3 new criteria have emerged in 2023, including that of Saint-Amand-les-Eaux. This is why this new race is very well received in the calendar “, underlined Vincent Petit, President of the Departmental Cycling Federation in the North.