Australia's Matt Lloyd won the green climber's jersey at the 2010 Giro d'Italia and is almost certain to target it again in 2011 after seeing the route in detail at the official presentation in Turin.
Lloyd's lightweight build means he is a pure climber and his eyes lit up when he saw the seven mountain finishes and the mountain time trial to Nevegal.
"The route looks pretty good, really good. It's going to be a deep and agonistic race," he told Cyclingnews.
"It's kind of fortunate for me because there are usually a lot of flat days early on in grand tours and then some big epic mountain stages in the last week that decide the overall classification. Next year the mountain stages at the Giro seem more spread out across the race and that is good for me and for going in long breakaways in the mountains, which is kind of my style of doing things."
"At the Tour de France every team has to ride to set up and protect a team leader throughout the race but on a route like this one, there are constant opportunities to try and win or get good things happening."
Lloyd is set to lead the Omega Pharma-Lotto team at the Giro d'Italia next year. Winning a stage and taking the green climber's jersey means he is considered one of the best pure climbers in the peloton.
"Yeah, I'll definitely be back in 2011. I'm not sure if I'll go for the green jersey, which is a good objective, or if I'll go for bigger and better things. We'll see," he said.
"This year's Giro has transformed my career. The Giro is one of the biggest races in the sport and has the history to make you a different rider. Everyone always told me I could do something and when it does happen, it feels good and it was nice it happened at the Giro."
Lloyd is based in Italy during the season, in the northern town of Varese. He is one of the last Australian riders to still be in Europe but will soon head home down under to enjoy the warmer winter.
"I'm buying a new apartment in Varese and as soon as that is all sorted out, I'll take off and be back home in Australia for the winter. I'll be starting the 2011 season at the Australian national championships and then the Tour Down Under. The season has only just finished but already the new one is on the horizon."
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