The eight names of Aggiano, Contrini, Ermeti, Konyshev, Maccanti, Muraglia, Pieri and Khalilov have been announced by Team LPR manager Omar Piscina for tomorrow's Milan-Sanremo.
"We arrive at this prestigious appointment with morale to the stars," said an optimistic Piscina. "We came out of Tirreno-Adriatico with one of the greatest highs; excluding two or three other ProTour teams, Team LPR, for its entrepreneurship and courage, was the best.
"We want to continue under the auspices of the same mental attitude, animating the race with one of our men in the breakaway. In terms of condition and maturity, our diamond will be Khalilov; in Tirreno, he was a true protagonist, demonstrating throughout the race he could compete with the best. It's logical for me to expect a lot from he, although I also hope to see Dario Pieri with the best, too."
Team manager Orlando Maini confirmed that after a training run over the final kilometres of tomorrow's race, Khalilov, who will be riding in the Ukraine national champion's colours, carries the team's main hopes. "Our top rider is he," said Maini, "and next will be Konyshev. In a tactical sense, they offer the maximum guarantees to us. But obviously in a one day race, we cannot just rely on Khalilov - Aggiano, Ermeti, Maccanti and Contrini can all go in a breakaway, and Muraglia I want to see shining on the Cipressa."
And finally, a prediction on the winner: "Petacchi, at this moment, pedals the strongest," responded Maini. "According to me, he will finish ahead of Boonen. Also, if he had not fallen in Tirreno, my favourite was Bettini."