Viviani and Pozzato join Italian national team at Tour de San Luis
Elia Viviani (Team Sky) and Filippo Pozzato (Southeast-Venezuela) will join the Italian national team, selected by Davide Cassani, at the Tour de San Luis held from January 18-24 in Argentina. The team will rely on Vivani in the bunch sprints, according to a press release from race organizers.
Viviani, Pozzato and Maresco will be the mentors on the squad that is also going to bring three under-23 riders Minali, Ravasi and Affini. The two sprinters on the team, Viviani and Maresco, will rely on their teammates to help in the lead-outs, while Pozzato will be the on-road captain.
“My role will be more as an expert than a leader and I want to thank Davide Cassani for this opportunity," Pozzato said. "It’s an honour to give my contribution to growing up young talents. Everybody knows I have a weakness for these colours and I live these moments with pure emotion.
"Since I will just have ended the Six Days of Rotterdam, I hope to be competitive enough to help my fastest teammates. It will be my seventh time in San Luis. This race has grown so much since its start with such a high international level. In some occasions it seems like I am at the Tour de France but luckily many champions present are at the beginning of the season."
Cassani's assistant Marino Amadori will direct the team, who added, "About the mixed selection, I would like to underline it is a project strongly wanted by Italian Cycling Federation to invest on young riders; Viviani will try to get good results and, at the same time, prepare the Worlds on Track for London, Maresco is a young sprinter who did well in his first year as a professional, the three talented under-23 Minali, Ravasi and Affini, the youngest 20, who will breath an international cycling scenario. These five men will be coordinated by skilled Pozzato."
Orica-AIS with newly crowned Australian national champion Amanda Spratt at Santos Women's Tour
Orica-AIS's Australian national champions against the clock, Katrin Garfoot, and on the road, Amanda Spratt, headline the six-rider team for this week's Santos Women's Tour. New signing Tayler Wiles makes her debut for the team and is the only non-Australian selected for the UCI 2.2 race.
"We'll be aiming for stage victories and also the overall," sports director Gene Bates said. "We’ve got a couple of riders that are moving really well at the moment and over the course of the four days there will be plenty of opportunities that will present on tough courses that we can really make a difference."
The four-day races starts January 16 with a 95km circuit stage in Mount Torrens, concluding January 19 with a Victoria Park criterium.
Having won the last two editions of the race, Spratt is keen to ensure the team can make it three in a row and start her second stint in the green and gold jersey with victory.
"Everyone in the team is in great form," Spratt said. "We’re going to have to be really smart with the way we’re racing to make the most of the fact that we’re all in form at the same time."
"It’s really great, I think it’s finally sinking in that I won it," Spratt added of her nationals win. "It’s kind of like the dream start; having the green and gold jersey to race in your own country and having everyone there cheering, really knowing what that jersey means."
ONE Pro Cycling to make Le Tour de Langkawi debut
"We have worked hard to build a race calendar for One Pro Cycling in 2016 to both develop and challenge our squad whilst always looking to be competitive," sports director Winston said. "To be accepted into Le Tour de Langkawi is testament to the squad that we’ve built and I’m confident we can travel to Malaysia not only to ride the race but to be challenging for good results."
While Goss will look for stage wins in the sprints, new signing John Ebsen will look to impress on the general classification. The 27-year-old has finished eighth and 13th overall in previous appearances at the race and will be assisted by James Oram when the roads start heading upwards.
ONE Pro Cycling for Le Tour de Langkawi 2016: Karol Domagalski (Pol), John Ebsen (Den), Matt Goss (Aus), Richard Handley (GBr), George Harper (GBr) and James Oram (NZl).