Kwiatkowski and Henao lead Team Sky at Pais Vasco

Milan-San Remo winner backed by strong team to take on Contador and Valverde

Milan-San Remo winner Michal Kwiatkowski and Paris-Nice winner Sergio Henao will lead Team Sky at next week’s Vuelta Ciclista al Pais Vasco as they look to continue their run of success.

Kwiatkowski has not raced since beating Peter Sagan and Julian Alaphilippe in a close sprint in the Via Roma, while the hilly Basque stage race will also see a return to racing for Henao after he held off a last-stage attack from Alberto Contador to win Paris-Nice.

Kwiatkowski and Henao will join forces to take on Contador, who leads the Trek-Segafredo team. Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) is arguably the favourite for the six-day race after dominating the Volta a Catalunya. Other contenders include Romain Bardet (AG2R-La Mondiale), Nicolas Roche (BMC), Rigoberto Uran (Cannondale-Drapac), Tim Wellens (Lotto Soudal), Adam Yates (Orica-Scott) and Warren Barguil (Team Sunweb).

Team Sky have selected a team of experience and youth, with Tao Geoghegan Hart included in the squad on the day he celebrates his 22nd birthday.

Also in the eight-rider roster are Michal Golas, Sebastian Henao, Vasil Kiryienka, David Lopez and Mikel Nieve. The same riders will compete in the GP Indurain on Saturday April 1 and then head to Pamplona for the start of the Tour of the Basque Country on Tuesday.

Only the first stage suits the sprinters, with stage 5 to Eibar ending with a nasty climb to the finish line. The final 27.7km individual time trial will crown the overall winner

Team Sky for the Tour of the Basque Country:
Tao Geoghegan Hart, Michal Golas, Sebastian Henao, Sergio Henao, Vasil Kiryienka, Michal Kwiatkowski, David Lopez and Mikel Nieve.


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