Various teams have announced their line-ups for the Settimana Internazionale Coppi e Bartali, which starts tomorrow in Riccione, Italy.
Quick.Step's Paolo Bettini enters the Coppi-Bartoli week with his form apparently improving after an animated ride in Milan - San Remo at the weekend. He will be supported by Ad Engels, José Antonio Garrido, José Antonio Pecharroman, Filippo Pozzato, Michael Rogers, Patrik Sinkewitz, and Jurgen Van Goolen.
The Liquigas-Bianchi team is treating the Coppi-Bartoli week as the first step in its lead-up to the Giro d'Italia, and will be led by its likely Giro leaders 2000 Giro winner Stefano Garzelli and Dario Cioni. They will be supported by Franco Pellizotti and Andrea Noé with Brazilian sprinter Luciano Pagliarini and Devis Miorin, Vladimir Miholjevic and Charly Wegelius.
"We are taking part in the 'Settimana Coppi e Bartali' with a competitive squad," team managing director Roberto Amadio said in a statement. "We can be a key player, especially in the hardest stages, with Pellizotti (in great condition since the very beginning of the season), Garzelli, Cioni and Noé."
After Coppi-Bartoli, Garzelli, Cioni, Noé and Miholjevic will spend time in the Dolomites familiarizing themselves with the climbs of the 2005 Giro.
The Barloworld - Valsir will field Roger Beuchat, Matteo Carrara, Marco Cavallari, Luca Celli, Enrico Degano, Darren Lill, Jeremy Maartens, and Eddy Serri.
Stage 1a - March 22: Riccione - Riccione, 95.2 km
Stage 1b - March 22: Misano Adriatico - Misano Adriatico, 12 km TTT
Stage 2 - March 23: Riccione - Faenza, 206.9 km
Stage 3 - March 24: Finale Emilia - Finale Emilia, 184.1 km
Stage 4 - March 25: Fiorano Modenese - Serramazzoni, 152.4 km
Stage 5 - March 26: Castellarano - Sassuolo, 170.3 km