Chicchi for the sprints, Cataldo and Pauwels for mountains and GC
Omega Pharma-QuickStep is taking a “young, motivated” team to the 2012 Giro d'Italia, leaving the top stars at home. The team will look for stage wins “on any type of terrain.”
Francesco Chicchi will go for the sprints, and “a victory in the Giro could give him good confidence for the rest of the season and reward him for the great work he's been doing up to now,” said sporting director Davide Bramati. He has four victories already this season, having won two stages in the Tour de San Luis, the Nokere Koerse and the Handzame Classic.
Dario Cataldo and Serge Pauwels will be the riders for the mountains and the general classification, and they will be supported by Marco Bandiera, Michal Golas, Nikolas Maes, and Martin Velits. Both Cataldo and Pauwels have done well in the Giro in the past. “Pauwels was a brilliant player in the race in 2009 and Cataldo stood out in the last editions, even coming close to a stage victory.”
Two rides will be making their Grand Tour debuts will be Michal Kwiatkowski and Julien Vermote. “Michal will will try to put his skills as a time trial man to good use right away in the brief Prologue that will open the race, while Julien will gain some important experience in support of his teammates and it will be a significant investment for his future.”
Bramati concluded: “Overall the team has all its cards in order to go for a stage victory and a good placing in the general classification."