Glorious return to cyclocross for Van Empel
Fem van Empel has marked her return to the field with a victory. The 21-year-old...
2020 was the debut year of the Jumbo-Visma Development Team. The team recorded several victories. In the upcoming season, Team Jumbo-Visma’s Development Team hopes to achieve great performances again, but the talent team does not lose sight of the long-term process.
“Despite the cancellation of many races, we had a very good training year”, Head of Development Robbert de Groot says. “All the boys from the Development Team are developing well. It’s not always easy, but that’s logical in this phase of their careers. In addition to training on the bike, we also invested in personal development and training theory in the past year. We are all working very hard to continue that process in a good way. In the coming years we will fine-tune and expand this way of coaching talent. All these processes must contribute to the performance on the bike, but we look beyond the next race.”
In 2021, the U23 riders will also be presented with a varied race program, with both national and international races. “The race program is balanced and includes races of different levels. We continue the connection with our World Tour team. That makes the program special for our riders of the Development Team.”
The purpose of this collaboration is to introduce the young riders to a level they have not experienced before. This way they are triggered and at the same time it’s a nice stimulus to take another step. De Groot: “We hope the riders will become aware of the high level that is required to become a professional cyclist and that they, partly thanks to this great race program, will continue to develop.”
Two riders from the U23 team will make their debut in the Team Jumbo-Visma flagship this year. Gijs Leemreize turned pro on January 1, while Olav Kooij will make the switch on July 1. “It’s our intention to realise these transfers to the World Tour team more often. The transfers of Gijs and Olav should not be exceptions. It must be the case that the program we offer produces talent that is ready to take the step up. But it’s sometimes difficult to plan, because everyone’s development curve is different. Development processes are individual and difficult to predict. For that we need to take our time. I can’t imagine that the transfers of Gijs and Olav will not be followed up.”