André Greipel has confirmed that he will race this year’s Milan-San Remo after race organisers RCS confirmed on Friday that the Pompeiana will not feature in this year’s race.
The pivotal climb was set to make its debut in this year’s race with many observers predicting that its close proximity to the finish would hamper the majority of the sprinters’ chances of success.
However on Friday afternoon RCS Sport, who also organise the Giro d’Italia, confirmed that the climb would not be used due to concerns over safety. Recent bad weather and issues over the state of the road surface had led to worries over the safety of the peloton on the descent of the climb. The race will still feature the iconic climbs of the Cipressa and Poggio.
"Now the Pompeiana is no longer part of Milan-Sanremo I have decided to participate,” Greipel announced in a team press release.
“It's unfortunate that the decision has been made so late, when the teams have already made up their programmes. Because not only the Pompeiana is left out of the course, but also Le Manie doesn't have to be climbed, the sprinters have more chance. But at Lotto Belisol also Tony Gallopin and Jürgen Roelandts can win."
Greipel, 31, has been in fine form this season winning six races, including three stages of the Tour of Oman. The German sprinter has competed in Milan-San Remo on several occasions but has never managed to finish inside the top 30. However the change of route is certainly sprinter-friendly in comparison to recent editions of the race which have included the climb of Le Manie.