German WorldTour team Bora-Hansgrohe have confirmed its seven-man team, built around world champion Peter Sagan for the Tour Down Under. Australian Jay McCarthy joins Sagan and will aim to replicate his stage win success and fourth place overall from 2016, while Irish sprinter Sam Bennett provides another fast option for the team.
"Bora-hansgrohe will field a really strong line up for the Santos Tour Down Under and have shown that they want to be competitive in their UCI WorldTour debut," race director Mike Turtur said of the team. "With the reigning UCI World Champion Peter Sagan leading the team and returning to the TDU for the first time since 2010, it will be a really exciting and close-fought event in 2017.
"Sagan is an exceptional cyclist and a consistent performer. In 2010 he attacked during the last climb on Willunga Hill to finish the Stage in fifth place – I'm sure he'll be looking for a podium finish to better his result."
Sagan added that he is looking forward to making a second appearance at the race, backed by a squad which contains a mix of youth and experience.
"This iconic Australian race brings the world’s best riders on a course that features tough climbs and fast sprints and I'm convinced its 19th edition could be the best so far," Sagan commented. "Returning, after seven years, to the race that set off my professional career is a great feeling and I look forward to riding on the roads of Adelaide and South Australia.
Austrian duo Lukas Pöstlberger and Gregor Muhlberger have also been selected for the race with Michael Kolar and German Rüdiger Selig rounding out the squad.
The Tour Down Under takes place from January 17-22 in Adelaide and South Australia with the People's Choice Classic criterium on January 15 proving an opportunity for the riders to test their form and condition before the first race day of the 2017 WorldTour.
Bora-hansgrohe for 2017 Tour Down Under: Peter Sagan, Sam Bennett, Gregor Muhlberger, Rüdiger Selig, Michael Kolar, Jay McCarthy, and Lukas Pöstlberger (Austria).