Team Columbia-Highroad's Marco Pinotti may have an advantage over the peloton at the TD Bank's International Cycling Championship's 250-kilometre race held in Philadelphia on Sunday. The Italian national time trial champion jumped on a plane to America just days after the conclusion of the Giro d'Italia.
"Normally this is a good race to do after a Grand Tour," said Pinotti. "Maybe we lose explosiveness but we gain endurance. It's a long race so the endurance will help me in the last half when the other riders might be getting tired. I remember when I did this before and at the start I felt like everyone was stronger than me but after 200 kilometres my endurance came out, the others endurance went down and I felt great."
Pinotti is one of five Giro d'Italia participants who are attending in Philadelphia this year including his teammate Edvald Boasson Hagen, Manuel Quinziato (Liquigas), Ricardo Serrano and Davide Viganò (Fuji-Servetto). But, he is no stranger to the famed American event after having competed in 2005 for Saunier-Duval and 2007 for T-Mobile.
He placed 12th in the final stage of the Giro, a time trial held in Rome. Most riders would be begging for time off after completing a three-week Grand Tour but according to Pinotti, his fitness started to ramp up during the final week.
"I'm feeling good for this race because I came out of the Giro with good form and not feeling too tired," said Pinotti who enjoyed two days with his family in hometown Bergamo before boarding a plane to the US.
"I would like to do well because I think I have good form right now. I think it is a race that traditionally suits the sprinters but tomorrow is hard to predict because, compared to the other years, there are not too many big teams. I would bet 70% that it will be a sprint of 50 riders, and otherwise, it will be a breakaway. We have strong sprinters but I would like to go in a breakaway."
Pinotti will maintain his Giro fitness for two more weeks as he aims to defend his title as the Italian National Time Trial Championships held on June 20 outside of Imola, Italy.
"I will skip the road race this year because I will not have any teammates. Every year there are surprise time trialists that show up to race our national championships. I won the last three editions, so it is important for me to try to do that again."