Arctic Race of Norway 2023

Key points:
• The Arctic Race of Norway is returning to the Arctic Circle for its decennial edition, which will build up to a nail-biting finish on North Cape.
• The 2022 champion, Andreas Leknessund, is ready to mount a title defence after a stint in the maglia rosa in the Giro d’Italia.
• Eight Tour de France teams will vie for victory from 17 to 20 August.

The tenth edition of the Arctic Race of Norway is going back to its roots with a route drawn entirely above the Arctic Circle and a finale on North Cape. After winning the event in 2022, the budding talent Andreas Leknessund is hell-bent on making it two in a row in the same epic venue where fellow Norwegian Lars Petter Nordhaug was crowned in 2014.

Six UCI WorldTeams are entering the race with a wide range of targets on their radar. Even without their French puncher Victor Lafay, who dazzled on the roads of Norway last year and recently stole the show in the Tour de France, Cofidis can rely on their leader Guillaume Martin, tenth in the last Grande Boucle. The Norwegian reigning champion, Andreas Leknessund, can tap the power of his reliable DSM–Firmenich team in his bid for glory on home turf. The Dutch squad’s roster also includes Matthew Dinham, the breakout performer of the Worlds in Glasgow, and Alberto Dainese, who clinched a sprint victory in the Giro d’Italia earlier this year. Australia-based Jayco AlUla will also be in the mix with the tough-as-nails Armund Jansen and the Italian climber Alessandro De Marchi, who has three Vuelta stage wins to his name. Lidl–Trek are expected to throw their weight behind the 2018 runner-up, Markus Hoelgaard, without forgetting the young Filippo Baroncini, U23 road world champion in 2021, in their first participation in the race.

The UCI ProTeams are determined to crash the party with their own famous riders. Israel–Premier Tech spells trouble for the rest of the peloton, with Dylan Teuns (winner of the 2017 Arctic Race of Norway) throwing his hat in the ring for GC. Q36.5 Pro Cycling Team are counting on fast men such as Kamil Małecki and the mountain maniac Carl Fredrik Hagen to make an impression in their race debut. The local Uno-X Pro Cycling Team is lining up with the big-engined two-time Norwegian champion Rasmus Tiller and with the danish Jonas Gregaard Wilsly, a climber who featured in several exciting breakaways in the Tour de France and win the polka-dot jersey at Paris-Nice earlier in the season. Norway will also be represented by its youthful national team, spearheaded by Odd Christian Eiking, who gallantly defended his red jersey in the Vuelta for seven days.

18 teams, main contenders

Team Jayco AlUla: De Marchi (ITA), Jansen (NOR), Quick (AUS) and Štybar (CZE)

Bingoal–WB: Guerin (FRA)
Team Flanders–Baloise: Bonneu (BEL)

Burgos BH: Navarro (ESP) and Barthe (FRA)
Equipo Kern Pharma: Adrià and Arrieta (ESP)

United States
Human Powered Health: Aasvold, Jensen (NOR) and Double (GBR)
Lidl–Trek: Hoelgaard (NOR), Tolhoek (NED) and Baroncini (ITA)

Cofidis: Martin (FRA) and Geschke (GER)
Groupama–FDJ: Gruel (FRA)
Team Arkéa–Samsic: Champoussin (FRA) and Verre (ITA)

Israel–Premier Tech: Teuns (BEL) and Impey (RSA)

Astana Qazaqstan Team: Scaroni (ITA) and Zeits (KAZ)

Norwegian national team: Eiking (NOR)
Team Coop–Repsol: Christophersen (NOR)
Uno X-Pro Cycling Team: Dversnes, Tiller (NOR) and Wilsly (DEN)

Team DSM–Firmenich: Leknessund (NOR), Dainese (ITA), Dinham (AUS) and Vanhoucke (BEL)

United Kingdom
Trinity Racing: Johnston (AUS)

Q36.5 Pro Cycling Team: Hagen (NOR) and Małecki (POL)