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Daniel Bennati (Liquigas - Doimo)
Nizzolo and Pires also join the Schleck team
The Luxembourg Pro Cycling team has announced the signing of Daniele Bennati as well as Davide Viganò, Giacomo Nizzolo and Bruno Pires.
The news comes a day after General Manager Brian Nygaard told Cyclingnews at the 2011 Tour de France route presentation that signings would be announced in the coming weeks and that a full team presentation would be made in Luxembourg in January.
Bennati joins after spending the last three seasons at Liquigas and has won over 50 professional races, including the points jerseys in both the Giro and the Vuelta.
“Bennati is such a classy rider and we are very happy to have him,” General Manager Brian Nygaard said.
“He is really passionate about our project and I’m sure he’ll be a significant addition to our line-up. He has won many impressive victories, but I actually don’t think we have seen his best yet. I see him flourishing in the right environment and I believe we can provide that for him.”
Bennati last two seasons have been effected be injuries but he has still won over 15 races in that time and aims to hit the ground running in 2011.
“My objectives for the coming season are to get off to a good start from the first and try to make the most of Tirreno-Adriatico in order to be supremely prepared for the Milan San Remo,” Bennati said.
“The team will be shooting to do well in the Classics and the Grand Tours,” Bennati said. “We have a strong group of riders who are the right age to start securing some major victories, and I want to be right in there providing the best support to the team that I possibly can.”
Davide Viganò joins from Team Sky, where he rode for just one season, but the 26-year-old is looking forward to a new start. The Italian could feature as a leadout man for Bennati or a sprinter in his own right.
“I was immediately interested in joining this team because from the beginning I could see the professionalism and seriousness of the people setting it up,” Viganò explained.
“I really want to add value and show my quality in racing during the cobbled classics, but most importantly, I want to demonstrate that I am a solid and reliable team player, and help make it the best group out there.”
Pires has been heralded as a promising rider from Portugal while Nygaard believes that neo-pro Giacomo Nizzolo, has all the hallmarks of a future sprint champion.
“Giacomo is considered the next big sprinter to come out of Italy,” Nygaard declared. “He is very young, but is a super fast, pure sprinter.”