David Arroyo (Caisse d'Epargne) will be chasing a top five finish when the Giro d'Italia gets underway this Saturday in Palermo, Italy. Arroyo held a press conference in Talavera, Spain with the local mayor Jose Francisco Rivas before leaving for the first Grand Tour of 2008.
"This year I'm going to raise the bar," he told AP. "I would like to be among the top five, thereby improving on the 10th position I achieved last year."
While Arroyo will be riding for Venezuelan team captain José Rujano, much will depend on the way the Giro unfolds. In the mean time, Arroyo is also hoping to claim a stage win while at the three week Grand Tour.
"I think this year is very important for me, so I'll look to break away and want to finish among the best," said Arroyo. "All support in principle [goes] to Rujano, since it has been decided by management. But then the road will decide the patterns and strategies to follow."
"In the Giro you have to start at 100 percent because there are no stages which can be used to take shape, from day one you have to be ready," he added.
The Giro starts this Saturday with a Team Time Trial in Palermo. The 21 stage race carries through to June 1, when it will conclude with an Individual Time Trial to Milano.
Arroyo finished in the top 20 at all three Grand Tours in 2007. After finishing 10th at the Giro the Spaniard claimed 13th place at the Tour de France before going on to take 19th at his home Grand Tour, the Vuelta a España.