Sagan Twitter poll results - News Shorts

Androni Giocattoli extend sponsorship into 2017, IAM Cycling to Tour of Croatia, First European win for Dan McLay

The results are in from the Cyclingnews twitter poll asking 'Who will @petosagan ride for in 2017?' with 2,069 votes cast in total. The World Champion has been linked to Etixx-QuickStep for the 2017 season and beyond with his Tinkoff team set to close at the end of the year. Sagan, 26, has also been linked to WorldTour teams Trek-Segafredo and BMC.

With 35% of the votes, Sagan to Trek-Segafredo topped the poll while 29% voted for a move to Etixx-Quick Step and 27% believe that Tinkoff will be saved and he won't be changing team. A move to BMC was the lest favourite of the option, attracting just nine percent of the vote.

With Fabian Cancellara retiring at the end of the season, there is a substantial hole to fill in the classics roster of the American team although Jasper Stuyven is considered a rider for future leadership after his breakthrough Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne victory.

 

Androni Giocattoli extend sponsorship into 2017

Italian Pro-Continental squad Androni Giocattoli - Sidermec have received a boost a with main sponsor extending its contract. The announcement was made at the Androni Giocattoli plant in Varallo Pombia.

"I thank Mario Androni and his nephew Paul Scolè - owners of Androni Giocattoli - for the trust they have renewed me. I also thank Mr. Pino Buda who has ensured the presence of Sidermec as a third sponsor," team manager Gianni Savio said. "We can then enter a new company as second name, and set up an even more competitive team. About the new team, our thoughts turn to the many fans who have always supported us with great passion. I warmly thank them, with affection and gratitude."

The team received a blow in January as it missed out on a wild card invitation to the 2016 Giro d'Italia which had Savio questioning the future of the squad.

"There is the possibility that at the end of the season the team will disappear after 20 seasons," Savio told Cyclingnews earlier in the year. "The second is that the team starts from scratch. I have had some challenges in my sporting life but always I have fought back. Because of my character, I want to continue, I don't want to stop. It depends on my sponsors."

Androni Giocattoli - Sidermec are next in action at the Giro dell'Appennino, Tour of Croatia and Giro del Trentino.

 

IAM Cycling looking for stage wins at the Tour of Croatia with Matteo Pelucchi

Swiss WorldTour team IAM Cycling head to the second edition of the Tour of Croatia looking to snare stage wins with Matteo Pelucchi. The Italian sprinter enjoyed four wins last season, including two stages at the Tour of Poland, but is yet to raise his arms in triumph this year but has three second places to his name. With the Giro d'Italia quickly approaching, Pelucchi is aiming to take a confidence boosting win before the first grand tour of 2016.

"Obviously, I hope to win a stage," he said. "Since early in the season, we have been working hard to build up a sprint train for me. At the Tour of Croatia, we want to have it work seamlessly, as if second nature. It is a perfect opportunity for us to practice before the Giro. If I do manage to win a stage, it will be a great boon to our confidence with the month of May coming."

Pelucchi will face stiff competition from the likes of Mark Cavendish (Data Dimension) and Giacomo Nizzolo (Trek-Segafredo) but has a strong lead out train featuring Sondre Holst Enger, Leigh Howard and Jonas Van Genechten.

"I have not had that many days of racing so far this year," he added. "In order to be able to have my form peak for the Giro, I need to find the rhythm of competition again. Recently, the Circuit de la Sarthe helped me open up my legs a bit. At the Tour of Croatia, I expect to see my form improve day by day. But even with that, I believe that I am in good enough condition to bring a victory to the team."

While the team is focused on the sprints, sports director Eddy Seigneur added that he is looking to Jonathan Fumeaux for a result on the summit finish of Učka on stage 4.

"He might be able to take some precious seconds. And that could prove useful especially considering the team time trial will be held the following day. It’s always gripping to compete in a team time trial, but when you have a place in the general classification to defend, it is even more motivating," Seigneur said. 

While no WorldTour teams attended the 2015 edition of the race, IAM Cycling will be joined by four other teams from the top tier with Astana, Data Dimension, Trek-Segafredo and Tinkoff confirmed starters.

IAM Cycling for Tour of Croatia: Marcel Aregger, Jonathan Fumeaux, Sondre Holst Enger, Leigh Howard, Pirmin Lang, Simon Pellaud, Matteo Pelucchi and Jonas Van Genechten.

Dan McLay claims first win of 2016 at GP de Denain

A last minute dash to the line at the GP de Denain from 11th wheel landed Dan McLay's first win of the season and first on European soil, overtaking Thomas Boudat (Direct Energie) at the last moment. The 24-year-old Briton who rides for Fortuneo - Vital Concept won a stage at the La Tropicale Amissa Bongo last year but had just one top-ten this season, at Scheldeprijs, prior to his victory.

"Slightly downhill tailwind and it was quite crazy as I think I lot of teams committed guys early just in case of the crosswinds so it started to slow down before the sprint," McLay told media as he waited backstage for the podium presentation. "The road was just completely full of guys sprinting … to be honest, I thought it was over with two-three hundred metres but I just said to myself’ don’t break and just keep sprinting’ and then the gaps opened up and I did like 20 metres of sprint and just at the last moment could come through."

McLay slaloming his way through the crowded sprint to pop out on the right of Boudat, the 2014 omnium world champion, while Kenny Dehaes of Wanty was third.

Daniel McLay (Fortuneo Vital Concept) wins the GP de Denain (Sirotti)

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