Victor Campenaerts: At 32 you don't want to wait until after the Tour de France to sign a contract

Lotto Dstny rider talking to multiple teams as he looks to make a mark in the Tour of Flanders

Clock10:17, Thursday 28th March 2024
Victor Campenaerts in action at the 2023 Primus Classic

© Getty Images

Victor Campenaerts is looking for a new contract

Victor Campenaerts is hoping to sign a contract before the Tour de France, with the Belgian rider on the market for 2025.

The 32-year-old has been part of the Lotto Dstny set-up since 2018 and in that time become a Grand Tour stage winner and holder of the UCI Hour Record. But with younger riders coming through each season, the versatile veteran is under no illusions that he needs to strike a deal sooner rather than later.

"We’re talking with the team, we’re talking with other teams. We still have time, it’s early in the year," Campenaerts told GCN at the start of Dwars door Vlaanderen.

"I’m actually very happy with the team. We’re not teammates, but friends. If you’re 32 years old, though, you don’t want to wait until after the Tour de France to sign a contract."

The Belgian has been a consistent team player for the team for several seasons but, with Arnaud De Lie out of the Spring Classics after a turbulent few weeks, it has fallen on the likes of Campenaerts to step up.

The team have won twice on home soil already this season and have been in the mix throughout the cobbled Classics – even if a major win has eluded them to this point. Away from the Classics, the team have shone, with a stage and the overall victory at the UAE Tour, courtesy of Lennert Van Eetvelt.

“We’ve had some bad luck but next to that we’ve started the season very well, especially with the climbing part of Lotto Dstny, and that’s been a long time since we’ve performed that well. That’s been very positive," Campenaerts said.

"We expected more from the Classics until now but, as Patrick Lefevere always says, the Classics are only over after Liège-Bastogne-Liège."

Tour of Flanders

Campenaerts’ main focus after the Classics will centre around the Tour de France, where he will aim to support De Lie in the sprints and have his chances in breakaways. For now, though, the focus is on the cobbles, with the Tour of Flanders coming up on Sunday.

With Wout van Aert (Visma-Lease a Bike) out and Lidl-Trek losing Jasper Stuyven through injury after a crash in Dwars door Vlaanderen, the race for the podium is wider than ever. Lotto haven’t positioned a rider on the podium of the Tour of Flanders in over a decade, when Jürgen Roelandts finished third in 2013.

They remain outsiders once again for this year’s edition but Campenaerts is hoping to anticipate the moves from the big favourites and potentially catapult himself down the road in a bid to give himself the best chance of a strong performance.

“I feel very good and I’m in good shape. I’m trying to go for a good result, like in every race. It’s always possible in Flanders races – every scenario is possible – but you can’t miss out on an important point," he said.

"It’s all about positioning, so you can be totally out of the race in one split second, or in one split second you can get yourself into the race with one big advantage over the favourites. That’s so nice about Flanders racing,” he said."

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