For cycling fans the counting down to watch their favourite team during the opening show in the Ghent Kuipke can start. A lot of the best riders will appear on stage for the first time in Belgium, as 17 of the 18 WorldTour teams will be present. Only the Spanish Movistar team will be absent, just like last year. Will be there, unlike last year: UAE Team Emirates and Team Dimension Data. Peter Sagan will be missing in the Bora hansgrohe team, but some other big names have already done recon of the brand new route and have marked the date in their agenda.
Alongside the 17 WorldTour teams, the organisation of Omloop Het Nieuwsblad had to hand out 8 more wildcards to ProContinental teams. Half of those came into the hand of the Belgian teams. We're glad to welcome Sport Vlaanderen-Baloise, Wanty-Groupe Gobert, WB Aqua Protect Veranclassic and Veranda's Willems-Crelan. Also three French teams have received a wildcard: Cofidus, Vital Concept and Fortuneo-Samsic. The orange shirts of Roompot-Nederlandse Loterij snatched away the last wildcard.