peloton / Yuzuru Sunada

The Cannondale team is ready for the first Grand Tour of the season. On Tuesday, May 6, the squad will fly to Belfast for the opening team time trial of the Giro d’Italia on Friday, May 9. After three stages between Northern Ireland and Eire, the race will transfer to Italy to start the peninsula climbing until Trieste, the city where the Giro d’Italia will end on Sunday, June 1.

“We aim to attend the Giro as one of the most combative teams,” said team manager Roberto Amadio. “We want to play an attacking role every time we have the chance. And the riders’ selection follows this ambition. We’re really confident in the entire team – the desire to show our potential will be the biggest push for this Giro”

Ivan Basso will be the most experienced rider of the team. With two Maglia Rosa in his showcase (2006 and 2010) Basso will be the leader to search for big results in the general classification. Making his second appearance at the Giro, Elia Viviani will be the team’s sprinter. The daily combatants will be Moreno Moser and Daniele Ratto, two of the most complete riders of the team. Each will be the stage hunters for the Green Machine. Oscar Gatto will play a similar role, trying to catch another memorable win similar to the one he took in 2011. Paolo Longo Borghini and Alan Marangoni will put their experience at the service of the team. Last but not least, the youngest riders of the selection, Davide Villella and Michel Koch, will ride a grand tour for the first time in their career.

“We have a really well balanced and equipped team. We have riders suited for every type of route and finish” said team director Stefano Zanatta. “Stage wins are our goals, as well as a good placement in the final classification. Ivan is a gutsy rider, he never gives up and we’ll support him to achieve the best result. It will be important to have him at the top condition in the last and hardest week of the race.”