Ivan Basso (Liquigas-Cannondale) has arrived in Colorado ahead of the USA Pro Cycling Challenge and the he is hoping that his post-Tour de France form will allow him to be competitive in the American race.
After a promising start to his Tour campaign, Basso struggled in the third week in the Alps and ultimately finished in 8th place in Paris. The Italian was prominent in support of Peter Sagan at the Tre Valli Varesine last week, however, and is looking to remain competitive all the way through to the Tour of Lombardy in October.
“The last few races have given me positive confirmation of my form and I want to take on this test to the maximum of my capabilities,” Basso said of the USA Pro Cycling Challenge.
The recent Tour of Utah demonstrated the threat that will be posed by the motivated quota of home riders, but Basso noted that the terrain in Colorado might prove to his liking.
“The start list is well stacked, especially with the Americans who have shown that they are going very strongly,” Basso said. “Colorado offers the kind of tough routes that I like, so I’ll play all of my cards to try and bring a new satisfaction to our ‘home’ sponsor Cannondale.”
Joining Basso in the Liquigas squad at the USA Pro Cycling Challenge will be domestique deluxe Sylwester Szmyd and Colorado native Timmy Duggan. Sprinter Elia Viviani will also aim to be competitive, while Ted King and the in-form Daniel Oss could play prominent roles.
“Basso is benefiting from a very good post-Tour de France condition, and I expect as much from Szmyd,” Liquigas directeur sportif Stefano Zanatta said. “The route is suited to his characteristics and even the time trial includes some significant gains in elevation.”
Liquigas-Cannondale for the USA Pro Cycling Challenge, August 22-28:
Ivan Basso, Timmy Duggan, Ted King, Daniel Oss, Elia Viviani, Sylwester Szmyd, Davide Cimolai and Juraj Sagan.