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Richie Porte, Tom Dumoulin and Philippe Gilbert to race Hammer Hong Kong

Peter Stuart
3 Oct 2018

The rosta of team leaders reveals an all-star lineup of attendees for the inaugural Hong Kong-based Hammer Series event this month

Grand Tour winner Tom Dumoulin and 2012 World Road Race Champion Philippe Gilbert are among the impressive line-up of riders for the inaugural Hammer Hong Kong, the last race in Velon’s innovative Hammer Series calendar on 14th October.

A rich selection of World Tour teams will be competing, including Team Sky, BMC Racing, Lotto-Soudal, Mitchelson-Scott and Team Sunweb amongst others. 

The level of riders for such a late-season event can often be a little uncertain, but Velon has so far done an impressive job of attracting big names from the major teams to the Hammer events, and Hammer Hong Kong is no exception.

New racing, same teams

The Hammer Series was set up by Velon, a company that is collectively owned by 11 pro teams, who hope that by hosting the races themselves the teams can retain a greater portion of the proceeds of the event and create a better funding model for pro cycling.

The Hammer Hong Kong (presented by Sun Hung Kai Properties) will be held over two separate consecutive races. The first is the Hammer Sprint, and the second is the Hammer Chase.

The first race takes the form of a punchy 43km criterium circuit in central Hong Kong, where numerous primes and overall finish will determine each team’s overall points. Those points will then be used to determine a place and time order for the Chase – a team time trial – which will decide the overall winner. See a more in-depth explanation of the format here.

Top tier participants have spoken enthusiastically about the upcoming race. ‘Heading to a new continent in Asia will be a great addition to the Hammer Series,’ says Tom Dumoulin. ‘There are a huge amount of cycling enthusiasts who normally don't get the chance to watch the WorldTour peloton from close by. It's another great step to further grow and globalise our sport.’

Philippe Gilbert, alternatively, sees the race as a pivotal one for Quick-Step Floors. ‘Our team is sitting second on the Hammer Series leaderboard and we can expect a good fight for the overall victory, so we have a lot of motivation for this last event in the Hammer Series this year.’

Cyclist will be attending the Hammer Hong Kong, so look out for online coverage and an upcoming magazine feature. For those not able to be there in person, the entire event can be viewed live, for free, here alongside extensive live rider data.

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