|Robert GESINK||Wilco KELDERMAN||Laurens TEN DAM||Steven KRUIJSWIJK||Jos VAN EMDEN||Thomas LEEZER||Sep VANMARCKE||Paul MARTENS||Bram TANKINK|
Sponsored for a long time by Rabobank, the team which will be at home for the Grand Start in Utrecht now represents the Dutch national lottery, like Belgian Lotto-Soudal and France’s FDJ. In 1996, taking up the reins from the previous sponsors of the teams formed by Jan Raas, such as Kwantum-Hallen (from 1984, the penultimate season as a rider for the five times winner of the Amstel Gold Race), Superconfex (from 1987), Buckler (1990), WordPerfect (1993) and Novell (1995), the bank and its orange jerseys hinting towards its national origins signed up for a long journey with the Tour de France before the Dutch financiers threw in the towel at the end of 2012. Belkin, an American manufacturer specialised in internet connections and networks, took up the baton allowing the story to continue, even if monetary restrictions led to two major figures on the team, Lars Boom and Bauke Mollema, taking their chances elsewhere.
More focused in the first half of its history on seeking stage victories with Dutch classics riders such as Michael Boogerd, Leon van Bon, Erik Dekker and Karsten Kroon, the team raised its ambitions by adding foreign sprinters, climbers and adventurers such as Oscar Freire, Michael Rasmussen, Denis Menchov, Juan Manuel Garate and Luis Leon Sanchez, with varying fortunes, before re-focusing on the emergence of great Dutch hopes. Robert Gesink, Laurens ten Dam, Steven Kruisjwijk, Moreno Hofland and Wilco Kelderman will be keeping the flame alive for exuberant fans on a Tour de France that starts in their back yard (at Utrecht and in Zeeland) and finishes, the day before the Parisian parade, in their second cycling home, on the slopes of Alpe d’Huez.
Stage victories: 25
- 1996: Michael Boogerd at Aix-les-Bains; Rolf Sorensen at Super-Besse
- 1998: Leon van Bon at Pau
- 1999: Robbie McEwen in Paris
- 2000: Leon van Bon at Tours; Erik Dekker at Villeneuve-sur-Lot, Revel and Lausanne
- 2001: Marc Wauters at Antwerp; Erik Dekker at Pontarlier
- 2002: Karsten Kroon at Plouay; Michael Boogerd at La Plagne
- 2005: Peter Weening at Gérardmer; Michael Rasmussen at Mulhouse
- 2006: Oscar Freire at Caen and Dax; Denis Menchov at Pla de Beret; Michael Rasmussen at La Toussuire
- 2007: Michael Rasmussen at Tignes and the Col d’Aubisque pass
- 2008: Oscar Freire at Digne-les-Bains
- 2009: Juan Manuel Garate on Mont Ventoux
- 2011: Luis Leon Sanchez at Saint-Flour
- 2012: Luis Leon Sanchez at Foix
- 2014: Lars Boom at Arenberg
Victories in secondary classifications: 4
- 2000: Erik Dekker (most combative rider)
- 2005: Michael Rasmussen (Polka Dot Jersey)
- 2006: Michael Rasmussen (Polka Dot Jersey)
- 2008: Oscar Freire (Green Jersey)
Yellow Jerseys: 10
- 2001: Marc Wauters, one day
- 2007: Michael Rasmussen, nine days
24: the stage victories of Rabobank over seventeen participations on the Tour de France. In addition, Lars Boom won in Arenberg last year, under the moniker of Belkin.
5th July 1996: in driving rain, Michael Boogerd, the golden boy of Dutch cycling, offers Rabobank its first stage victory on the Tour de France at Aix-les-Bains.
19th July 2000: Erik Dekker wins a resounding third stage that year with triumph in Lausanne.
27th July 2008: Oscar Freire wins the Green Jersey after having won three stage victories for Rabobank during his career.