With the PWA taking the entry down to the top 32 men for the Gran Canaria event it’s caused a lot of ruffled feathers, with riders that were expected to be in not getting a place and some unexpected faces back on the tour. (Welcome back Boujmaa!)
Now the injury/non attendance of some riders has been taken into account the likes of Antoine Martin have now secured places in the draw as of right (although only due to others dropping out). Canarian local and someone many have had their eyes on to place highly in GC, Alessio Stillrich, is still missing from the draw and will need to come through the qualification. As will Martin ten Hoeve and more of the top riders.
Here’s the updated entry list…
22 top ranked riders
This leaves 6 places through the qualification system.
With Williams, Seadi, Swift and Horrocks not competing the 26th ranked rider from 2012 should be included. However, Boujmaa has been given a place based on his previous ranking (as he could not compete due to injury for the past two years) which pushes out 26th ranked Alessio Stillrich. Alessio happened to finish 13th at both Pozo and Tenerife but could not compete in Sylt and Klitmoller due to school commitments.
If a qualifier comes through and finishes highly i.e. top 5 will they have to complete the trials again in Tenerife? And throughout the year?
Lampy was also injured in 2012 (severe cut to the foot) but still competed in Sylt to keep his ranking high, but was not able to sail to full level due to the injury. How far does the injury clause go? Will injuries like this be taken into consideration?
The question is should Boujmaa be given an automatic place over Alessio? Should the automatic place be given to Boujmaa in your opinion? Or should it go to Alessio and Boujmaa has to qualify? No doubt Boujmaa has had terrible luck with injury, but could he have competed on the tour over the last two years if he wanted?