Race : Tour de Pologne 2017 (July 29 – August 4, 2017)
Country : Poland
Stages/Distance : 708 miles / 1139km
Race Class : WT
Team Novo Nordisk returns to World Tour stage racing in July at the Tour de Pologne, featuring seven brilliant stages across southern Poland’s spectacular Tatra Mountains.
The world’s first all-diabetes professional cycling team will line up in Krakow on July 29, with seven riders, an unusual and exciting change for all squads and down from the normal eight at week-long stage races .
“TNN just finished a week-long training camp at altitude in Italy, and the team is ready for the next big challenge at the Tour de Pologne. We come to the start line for the second year in a row, and wish to express our gratitude to the organizers for the invitation by being in breakaways and top 10s at the stage finish. The Tour de Pologne is a great World Tour race where opportunities to shine for a global audience continue into the heart of the summer,” said TNN General Manager Vassili Davidenko.
With riders Chris Williams and Martijn Verschoor among those named to the pre-selection, Team Novo Nordisk’s final roster will be announced within 72 hours of the 29 July start. The two veterans hope to return to the massively popular summer race race this year in Poland after unusually cold and rainy weather in 2016.
As professional athletes who manage diabetes alongside the tough, daily demands of racing in World Tour stage races, Williams and Verschoor each look forward to the start of the second half of the 2017 season in Poland, from a year that began in the sands of Dubai and Abu Dhabi back in February, and now looks forward to three months of racing, training and travel.
Verschoor, who will make his third start at the Tour de Pologne, says he looks forward to Poland’s great week of World Tour racing among old friends from the diabetes community.
“Last year we met some great fans and supporters of the team at the Tour of Pologne. It’s great to see the support we have amongst the diabetes community in Poland. This year, hopefully we have some better weather so that we can meet even more.
“It’s so great that in Poland we always meet the local diabetes community, and we get to know the people we are racing for. I remember the first time I raced in Poland in 2012, with such big crowds and so many people coming to see us, I hope that our team can give them a bit of hope and I hope we can inspire the people with diabetes in Poland.
“I am compelled to live with the fact that I have diabetes, and so living with it is a way of acceptance. If I’m always fighting against it, my life becomes more to manage. So I accept that I have diabetes – It’s not always perfect, but I strive to train, race, live as well as I can with my diabetes.”
“If I wasn’t a cyclist, I’d still have diabetes, so being a professional cyclist doesn’t motivate me any more or less to manage it. If I want to live a healthy life, I need to make sure that I manage my diabetes as best I can, regardless of what I do.
“On top of this, I am not going to let diabetes prevent me from doing what I want – so I don’t manage professional cycling with diabetes, I manage my diabetes so that I can continue to be a professional cyclist.”
The 2017 Tour de Pologne gets underway on Saturday, July 29 in Krakow, with a finish via the Old Town city center, and finishes with an epic day in the mountains on Friday, August 4 in the ski resort and summer holiday town of Bukowina Tatrzańska.
Team Novo Nordisk Tour de Pologne Roster :
Chris Williams (AUS), Martijn Verschoor (NED), Joonas Henttala (FIN), David Lozano (ESP), Javier Megias (ESP), Andrea Peron (ITA).