When the team then known as Wanty–Groupe Gobert made its Tour de France debut in 2017, its nine riders were also first-timers. It played its troublemaker role to perfection, lighting up the race every time that the course entered breakaway territory, especially during the first week, with men such as Yoann Offredo and Frederik Backaert, whose background as a farmer-cum-cyclist turned him into a media darling. The team's other attraction is cyclist-philosopher Guillaume Martin, holder of a degree from the University of Nanterre and author of the book Socrate à vélo ("Socrates on a bike"), who tapped his physical potential to finish 23rd in his first Tour de France and third in stage 8 to Les Rousses.
The Walloon team managed by Jean-François Bourlart is in its twelfth season in the peloton. Its first, in 2008, under the moniker Verandas Willems, a third-division team, preceded the squad's accession to Pro Continental level in 2011. It has won the Europe Tour three years in a row (2016, 2017 and 2018). Its consistency is the best argument for renewing its invitation to the Tour de France, a race in which it placed riders in the top 10 of stages twelve times in 2018, with Guillaume Martin finishing 21st overall. It got a World Tour triumph in 2016 when Enrico Gasparotto claimed the Amstel Gold Race three weeks after the tragic death of Antoine Demoitié in Gent–Wevelgem.
Directeur sportif Hilaire Van der Schueren has been in charge at Wanty–Gobert Cycling Team ever since his previous team Vacansoleil, which took part three times in the Tour de France (from 2011 to 2013) without winning a single stage, disbanded at the end of the 2013 season. He is a relic of a bygone age of cycling who started off as an assistant to Guillaume Driessens (one of Eddy Merckx's directeurs sportifs) and then Jan Raas in the mid-1980s. He is the other media attraction of the Belgian squad, sometimes to the point of caricature.
Overall wins: 0
Stage wins: 0
Secondary classification wins: 0
Yellow jerseys: 0
3: the number of Belgian teams set so start the 2019 Tour de France in Brussels, with Wanty–Gobert Cycling Team again joining Deceuninck–Quick Step and Lotto–Soudal after 2017 and 2018.
17 April 2016: Enrico Gasparotto takes the Amstel Gold Race for Wanty–Groupe Gobert.
8 July 2017: Guillaume Martin becomes the first Wanty–Groupe Gobert rider to finish in the top 3 of a Tour de France stage at the end of stage 8 to Les Rousses.
10 July 2018: Andrea Pasqualon (sixth), Dion Smith (ninth) and Timothy Dupont (tenth) make it three Wanty–Groupe Gobert men in the top 10 of stage 4 to Sarzeau.
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