Bahrain-Merida have named the team that will start the Vuelta a España. Valerio Agnoli, Manuele Boaro, Ivan Cortina, Javier Moreno, Antonio Nibali, Vincenzo Nibali, Domen Novak, Franco Pellizotti and Giovanni Visconti form the nine-man team.
“I’ve worked hard and I’m ready for this new challenge”, says Nibali, Vuelta winner in 2010 and second in 2013. “The route is very demanding but overall I like it”.
“Competition is really strong and seeing the minimum gaps in classification at the Giro d’Italia and Tour de France you can not be distracted even for a moment. So many climbs, but also the Navarra Circuit time trial of 40 kilometres can be decisive”.
The race starts on August 19th in Nimes, France and the riders will face twenty-one stages for a total distance of 3,324 kilometres. The race includes five mountainous stages, one 40-kilometre individual time trial and a 13-kilometre team time trial on the opening day.
Amongst the climbs the riders will face is the Alto de Angliru on the penultimate stage, with an average slope of 9.8% and a maximum of 23%
Bahrain-Merida Sports Director Paolo Slongo said: “It’s the usual Vuelta with so many long and steep climbs and so much ground to attack. We are well prepared and we come from a good Tour de Pologne where Vincenzo and the team have given good signals”.
“Unfortunately, it’s not the team we imagined with the absence of strong riders such as Izagirre, Navardauskas and Sioutsou, but this has allowed us to bring in two interesting young boys like Domen Novak and Antonio Nibali. For them it will be a great experience”.