Patrick Lefevere calls Remco Evenepoel ‘too fat’

The outspoken team boss has discussed the young star’s first few months as a pro

Patrick Lefevere has said 19-year-old star Remco Evenepoel is 'too fat' (Photo: Yuzuru SUNADA)
(Image credit: Yuzuru SUNADA)

Patrick Lefevere has called 19-year-old Remco Evenepoel “too fat.”

The outspoken Deceuninck – Quick-Step boss was blunt about the young revelation, who turned pro at the start of the 2019 season.

Evenepoel, the current junior road race and time trial world champion, has been making waves at WorldTour level, but Lefevere says he still needs to improve.

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In the first summit finish of his pro career at the UAE Tour, Evenepoel finished 15th ahead of the likes of Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida) and Michał Kwiatkowski (Team Sky), but was visibly disappointed after the stage.

Lefevere told Belgian new site Humo (opens in new tab): “I will tell you something, Remco is too fat.

“He was disappointed [about the UAE]. He does not say so, but I saw him sitting on a bench and I have been in the business long enough to know that I should leave him alone.

The 64-year-old team boss said that Evenepoel is currently four kilograms too heavy but is “working hard.”

Evenepoel finished third in the individual time trial at the Vuelta a San Juan in January, going on to take the youth classification.

He crashed out of the UAE Tour on stage four and raced in Belgium for the first time at Nokere Koerse.

The next big tests for the Belgian star are now the Tour of Turkey and the Tour de Romandie in April.

Evenepoel’s revelatory performances at junior level have made him a star in Belgium, with all the pressure that follows.

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He recently admitted he would be more comfortable preparing for races without the attention.

In his final year at the junior level Evenepoel won 23 of the 35 races he entered, giving him the opportunity to skip the under-23 category and move straight to a WorldTour team.

Deceuninck – Quick-Step sports director Rik Van Slycke echoed Evenepoel’s thoughts on the pressure.

Van Slycke said it’s “unbelievable” how many interview requests the team receives, and that the attention is similar to that once given to fellow Belgian Tom Boonen.

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Alex Ballinger

Alex Ballinger is editor of BikeBiz magazine, the leading publication for the UK cycle industry, and is the former digital news editor for After gaining experience in local newsrooms, national newspapers and in digital journalism, Alex found his calling in cycling, first as a reporter, then as news editor responsible for Cycling Weekly's online news output, and now as the editor of BikeBiz. Since pro cycling first captured his heart during the 2010 Tour de France (specifically the Contador-Schleck battle) Alex covered three Tours de France, multiple editions of the Tour of Britain, and the World Championships, while both writing and video presenting for Cycling Weekly. He also specialises in fitness writing, often throwing himself into the deep end to help readers improve their own power numbers.  Away from the desk, Alex can be found racing time trials, riding BMX and mountain bikes, or exploring off-road on his gravel bike. He’s also an avid gamer, and can usually be found buried in an eclectic selection of books.