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BMC head to Tirreno-Adriatico with two former podium finishers

Alessandro Ballan (BMC) at the start.

Alessandro Ballan (BMC) at the start. (Image credit: Bettini Photo)

The 16.8-kilometer team time trial that kicks off Tirreno-Adriatico on Wednesday will set the tone for the American BMC squad in the seven-day race, according to assistant director Fabio Baldato.

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The team's roster includes two riders who have finished third in the 'race between the seas' before, with Cadel Evans achieving a podium place in 2010 and Alessandro Ballan in 2006. Depending on the riders' performance at the collective race against the clock, the team will establish its overall strategy at the event finishing in San Benedetto del Tronto next Tuesday, March 15.

"After the team time trial, we can see which one of our riders has the best chance to go for the general classification," Baldato said. Former world champion Evans agreed: "I would like to be able to a good team time trial. From there, we'll see. I don't have any high expectations, but I won't be bad, either."

The other former world champion of th team, Ballan, could also emerge as the man to lead as he finished second at the Monte Paschi Strade Bianche last week-end, showing excellent form.

The two leaders will be joined by Tour de France stage winners George Hincapie and Marcus Burghardt, as well as time trial specialists Manuel Quinziato and Michael Schär. Mauro Santambrogio and Greg Van Avermaet round out the eight-man roster at the start line in Marina di Carrara.