Philippe Gilbert celebrates 40th birthday in the Tour: already six of the eight names filled in at Lotto-Soudal

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He was already part of the pre-selection, but Philippe Gilbert will also effectively join the Tour de France. Lotto-Soudal has definitively filled in six of the eight names: Caleb Ewan, Tim Wellens, Andreas Kron, Florian Vermeersch, Brent Van Moer and Gilbert.

Last year he thought “never to return to the Tour”, but in recent weeks Gilbert has again expressed the wish to be there. After a difficult spring, he also put himself back on the map in sport with a stage win in the Four Days of Dunkirk and a good Tour of Switzerland. It will be the twelfth Tour for Gilbert, who won the stage to Mont des Alouettes in 2011.

Remarkable: on 5 July, the day of the fourth stage between Dunkirk and Calais, Gilbert will celebrate his 40th birthday. “I am very happy to ride my twelfth Tour”, he says. “And to celebrate my fortieth birthday in my last Tour. I want to do my job in the sprints for Caleb Ewan, but I am also motivated to show myself. With my experience I can be of great value to the team anyway.” (jpdv)

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