Omega Pharma - Quick-Step Cycling Team and rider Jan Bakelants reached an agreement on a contract for the next season. The Belgian rider (27) has several highlights of his career, including the overall victory at 2008 Tour de l'Avenir and the 2nd Stage of the 2013 Tour de France. Bakelants wore the yellow jersey as a result of his Tour win this year, maintaining the race lead for the 3rd and 4th Stages. He followed up his strong Tour de France performance with a victory at Grand Prix de Wallonie and a 4th place at Eneco Tour.
Jan is a perfect addition to our team," Team Manager Patrick Lefevere said. "For a few years now he has been among the best riders on the circuit and this season he reaffirmed his skills with excellent results, demonstrating performance continuity. We are very pleased with the agreement we reached. Bakelants is a well-rounded rider, one who can shine in the Wallonie Classics and he will also figure as a major player as he hunts for stages in the major tours. He is expected to take top placements in the shorter stage races, too."
"I am happy and proud to be a part of this team," said Bakelants. "These past few weeks I've been in touch with the team. Here at the World Championships in Florence I had a final meeting with Lefevere and we came to an agreement. OPQS is a great squad with a great attitude, I'm very pleased to be a part of this project. It's a great step for my career. I see myself as a rider for the hilly races, for the one-day races like the Liege-Bastogne-Liege and as a stage hunter. My goal is to be useful to the squad next year, precisely in those kinds of races."