Italian Damiano Cunego will return to competition for this weekend's Critérium International, the two-day, three-stage event which takes place in the Northeastern part of France, the team announced Thursday. The 26 year-old will use the race as a tune-up for the upcoming Ardennes Classic, Liège-Bastogne-Liège before beginning his preparations for the Tour de France.
Cunego has been suffering from some health problems since the Volta Valenciana at the end of February, and has been on antibiotics to treat an infection. "Damiano is completing an antibiotic therapy to heal an infection that has been disturbing him for 20 days and that influenced him during Paris-Nice," said team physician Guardascione Carlo.
The Lampre rider announced last week that he would skip the Giro d'Italia in favour of the Tour de France. Liège-Bastogne-Liège one-day classic at the end of April before concentrating on his main goal for the season, July's Tour de France.
Cunego will be joined by Matteo Bono, Roberto Longo, Mirco Lorenzetto, Mauro Santambrogio and Paolo Tiralongo for the Critérium International.