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PARIS (AFP) — American all-rounder Tejay Van Garderen and powerful Australian Rohan Dennis will lead BMC’s efforts for a podium place at the 2017 Giro d’Italia, the U.S. racing team confirmed on Friday.
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It will be a 10th major tour for Van Garderen — fifth in the Tour de France in 2012 and 2014 — and who is backed up by a healthy mix of youth and experience.
“The Giro d’Italia is a race I’ve never done before and it was a race I had been asking to do for awhile. It is a good opportunity for me to lead the team in a different grand tour,” the 28-year-old said.
“The route suits me well. There is a good number of time trialling kilometers and a good number of mountain stages. It is a very balanced grand tour. It’s hard, certainly, but I like the route,” said van Garderen, who can defend himself in the mountains and who is strong on time trialling.
“I am hitting good form at the right time. Now it’s about fine-tuning the big load of work that I have done since December, with my final race at the Tour de Romandie.” After Thursday’s stage 2, he was 68th overall in Romandie, 20 seconds behind the race leader.
Dennis has been honing his skills in the Tour of the Alps and also makes his Giro debut.
“I have a lot to learn and I have to start somewhere where there are a lot more opportunities to get a result,” said the 26 year-old former world hour record holder.
“For my first general classification attempt at a grand tour, to arrive in Milan with all of my skin, top-five or top-10 on general classification, and with a stage win would be the absolute best-case scenario for my first attempt,” added the ambitious Australian.
BMC team for the Giro (May 5-28):
Rohan Dennis (Aus)
Silvan Dillier (Swi)
Ben Hermans (B)
Manuel Quinziato (I)
Joey Rosskopf (US)
Manuel Senni (I)
Dylan Teuns (B)
Tejay Van Garderen (US)
Francisco Ventoso (Sp)
Read more at https://velo.outsideonline.com/races_event/2017-giro-ditalia#gZDPKV6qyOYq2jOj.99