Liquigas-Bianchi is looking for the General Classification victory in the Italian ProTour race Tirreno Adriatico, taking place from March 8-14. Team leaders for the event will be Danilo Di Luca and Stefano Garzelli, but the winner of the first-ever ProTour points ranking last year already knows that he will not be the one fighting for it - although he took three stage wins there in the past.
"I like the route of Tirreno-Adriatico very much, but this year's edition is scheduled too early for my objectives," said Di Luca. "I’m expected to reach the peak of my fitness in two months time, so I can’t be a favourite. I could claim a stage win, but my first goal is decidedly to help Stefano Garzelli: he seems to be flying and will surely aim at overall victory."
According to Garzelli, this year’s Tirreno-Adriatico will be very demanding. "That’s a tough route, but I trained really well during the long training camp in Mexico. The race will already be fought in stage one to Tivoli, but only the time trial in Servigliano and the finish on the climb to Monti della Laga will decide the race. There, I’ll do my best," he commented.
Besides Di Luca and Garzelli, the Liquigas squad for the "race between the two seas" will also include Luca Paolini, Franco Pellizotti, Magnus Backstedt, Stefano Zanini, Marco Milesi, and Alessandro Spezialetti. Team managers directing the squad will be Stefano Zanatta and Mario Scirea.