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First clash of sprinters due at Dubai Tour

Josh Cunningham
30 Jan 2017

The Dubai Tour kicks off tomorrow, with a first clash of the world's best sprinters due to animate proceedings

The Dubai Tour is due to commence tomorrow, and with the likelihood of sprints contesting at least four, if not five, of the stages, it is no surprise that the race has attracted some of the fastest names in the business. 

Headlining are Mark Cavendish of Team Dimension Data, Marcel Kittel of QuickStep Floors and John Degenkolb of Trek-Segafredo. Cavendish comes to the race without having raced yet in 2017, but his last competitive outing was also in the Middle East at the Abu Dhabi Tour back in October, and he won two stages there. 

Kittel returns to the race as the defending champion, but has also not yet raced in 2017 so his form - which has been admittedly up and down over past seasons - is unknown. John Degenkolb is a rung below Kittel and Cavendish in pure sprinting terms, but he has won in Dubai before on the uphill Hatta Dam finish, due for stage 4, and his gradual return to full fitness last year could be indicative of a return to World Tour wins in 2017, with his new team Trek-Segafredo. 

Dylan Groenewegen and Juan Jose Lobato form part of a strong Lotto-Jumbo NL team; the dutchman showing himself to be a true sprinting force in 2016, and the Spaniard also a former stage winner at the Dubai Tour. Team Sky's Elia Viviani, Bahrain-Merida's Sonny Colbrelli and UAE Abu Dhabi's Sacha Modolo are all on the startlist too, and likely candidates to be up there, or even nab a stage.

Meanwhile at the Majorca Challenge, which concluded yesterday, Andre Greipel and Daniel McLay both won sprint stages, while Nacer Bouhanni was left frustrated. 

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