Milan-San Remo: Movistar backing Valverde and Lobato

Betancur to make debut with Spanish team

Alejandro Valverde and JJ Lobato will spearhead Movistar’s Milan-San Remo team this Saturday as the Spanish team seeks victory in the first monument of the 2016 season. Valverde was the best rider for Movistar last year in 20th place while Lobato was fourth at the 2014 edition of the race.

One of three Colombians selected for the race, Carlos Betancur will make his debut for the team after his move from AG2R-La Mondiale.

In preparation for the 291km race, Valverde and teammate Andrey Amador spent time this week conducting a reconnaissance of three Giro d'Italia stages. Valverde will make his Giro debut in 2016 and has increased the number of Italian race days on his schedule as a result with the 35-year-old appearing at Strade Bianche, Tirreno-Adriatico and Milan-San Remo.

Lobato has recovered from knee pain that saw the 27-year-old abandon Paris-Nice on stage 2. The Spaniard took an impressive win at Hatta Dam in the Dubai Tour but has been forced to abandon both European stage races he has started this year.

Tour de San Luis champion Dayer Quintana makes his second Milan-San Remo appearance while fellow Colombian Winner Anacona makes his first appearance at La Primavera. Fran Ventoso and Giovanni Visconti complete the team.

Nairo Quintana will make his first appearance in Europe this season on Monday at the Volta a Catalunya with Movistar yet to confirm its roster for the WorldTour stage race.

Cyclingnews will have live coverage of Milan-San Remo from 8am GMT Saturday with a full report, results, photos and news to follow. Cyclingnews will also have video highlights from the race.

Movistar for Milan-San Remo: Alejandro Valverde, Juanjo Lobato, Fran Ventoso, Andrey Amador, Giovanni Visconti, Dayer Quintana, Winner Anacona and Carlos Betancur.

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