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Gianni Meersman (born 5 December 1985) is a Belgian former professional road bicycle racer, who rode professionally between 2007 and 2016 for the Discovery Channel, FDJ, Lotto–Belisol and Etixx–Quick-Step teams. He currently works as a directeur sportif for the Pauwels Sauzen–Bingoal team.

Gianni Meersman
Gianni Meersman.JPG
Meersman at the 2013 Tour de l'Ain.
Personal information
Full nameGianni Meersman
NicknameMerrie[1]
Born (1985-12-05) 5 December 1985 (age 33)
Tielt, West Flanders, Belgium
Height1.77 m (5 ft 10 in)[1]
Weight63 kg (139 lb)[1]
Team information
Current teamPauwels Sauzen–Bingoal
Discipline
  • Road
  • Track
Role
Rider typeAttacker[1]
Stage hunter[1]
Professional team(s)
2007Discovery Channel
2008–2011Française des Jeux
2012Lotto–Belisol[2]
2013–2016Omega Pharma–Quick-Step[3]
Managerial team(s)
2017–Marlux–Napoleon Games (directeur sportif)
Major wins
Grand Tours
Vuelta a España
2 individual stages (2016)

Stage races

Tour de Wallonie (2014)

One-day races and Classics

Great Ocean Road Race (2015)
Handzame Classic (2015)

After stage 3 of the 2007 Tour de Georgia, Meersman was forced to abandon the race due to a severe case of patella tendinitis. He treated the riders of the Grand Peloton, a charity fundraiser ride, to his presence as the Peloton Captain of the "Blue Peloton". Meersman finally came to Grand Tour prominence, after 10 years as a professional racer, at the 2016 Vuelta a España winning two stages in bunch sprints. During the race, Fortuneo–Vital Concept announced that Meersman had agreed a one-year contract with the team for 2017.[4] However, a diagnosis of cardiac arrhythmia and scar tissue on his heart forced Meersman to announce his retirement on 30 December 2016.[5] On 11 October 2017, Meersman was confirmed as the new sporting director for cyclo-cross team Marlux–Napoleon Games.[6]

Major resultsEdit

 
Meersman (centre) on the podium after winning the 2015 Handzame Classic. Also pictured are Antoine Demoitié (left) and Tiesj Benoot (right).
2002
2nd Time trial, National Junior Road Championships
2004
1st Circuit de Wallonie
10th Grand Prix Criquielion
2005
1st Stage 1 Ronde de l'Isard
3rd Flèche Ardennaise
8th Overall Le Triptyque des Monts et Châteaux
2006
2nd Zellik–Galmaarden
6th Overall Circuit des Ardennes
2007
1st Stage 5 Tour of Austria
1st Stage 3 Tour de Georgia
7th Overall Tour of Belgium
8th Overall Driedaagse van West-Vlaanderen
2008
1st Stage 4 Tour de Wallonie
2nd Overall Étoile de Bessèges
3rd Trophée des Grimpeurs
3rd Grand Prix de Plumelec-Morbihan
6th Overall Four Days of Dunkirk
9th Overall Circuit de Lorraine
2010
2nd Overall Paris–Corrèze
2011
1st   Overall Circuit des Ardennes
1st   Points classification
1st Stage 2
2nd Road race, National Road Championships
2nd Paris–Troyes
2nd Route Adélie
3rd Halle–Ingooigem
4th Flèche d'Emeraude
7th Overall Settimana Internazionale di Coppi e Bartali
8th Brabantse Pijl
10th Overall Ster ZLM Toer
2012
1st Stage 4 Paris–Nice
2nd Overall Tour de Wallonie
3rd Clásica de San Sebastián
10th Overall Volta ao Algarve
1st Stage 1
2013
Volta a Catalunya
1st Stages 1 & 2
Tour de Romandie
1st Stages 1 & 3
1st Prologue Tour de l'Ain
1st   Points classification Critérium du Dauphiné
2nd Road race, National Road Championships
6th Les Boucles du Sud Ardèche
6th Eschborn-Frankfurt City Loop
7th Trofeo Platja de Muro
2014
1st   Overall Tour de Wallonie
1st Points classification
1st Stage 5
1st Trofeo Muro-Port d'Alcúdia
Tour de l'Ain
1st Prologue & Stage 2
3rd Overall Ster ZLM Toer
3rd Trofeo Ses Salines
3rd La Drôme Classic
4th Overall Tour de Picardie
4th Trofeo Palma
6th Grand Prix Cycliste de Québec
7th Grand Prix Impanis-Van Petegem
9th Classic Sud-Ardèche
2015
1st Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race
1st Handzame Classic
1st Stage 1 Volta ao Algarve
2nd Le Samyn
6th People's Choice Classic
2016
Vuelta a España
1st Stages 2 & 5
Held   after Stages 2 & 5–9
2nd Overall Tour de Wallonie
3rd Handzame Classic
8th Münsterland Giro

Grand Tour general classification results timelineEdit

Grand Tour 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
  Giro d'Italia DNF DNF
  Tour de France 77
  Vuelta a España DNF 98 57 58 111
Legend
Did not compete
DNF Did not finish

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d e "Gianni Meersman". Omega Pharma–Quick-Step. Decolef. Archived from the original on 4 July 2014. Retrieved 29 October 2016.
  2. ^ "Meersman signs with Lotto-Belisol". Cycling News. Future Publishing Limited. 29 November 2011. Retrieved 2 January 2012.
  3. ^ "Meersman graduates to Omega Pharma-Quickstep". Cycling News. Future Publishing Limited. 19 November 2012. Retrieved 8 January 2013.
  4. ^ "Meersman to ride for Fortuneo Vital Concept in 2017". cyclingnews.com. 30 August 2016. Retrieved 30 August 2016.
  5. ^ "Cardiac issues force Gianni Meersman into retirement". Cycling News. 30 December 2016. Retrieved 30 December 2016.
  6. ^ "Meersman returns to cycling as director of Marlux-Napoleon Games". cyclingnews.com. 11 October 2017. Retrieved 12 October 2017.

External linksEdit