Movistar have confirmed an extremely experienced line-up to support Nairo Quintana in the first leg of his Giro-Tour double attempt. At 27, Quintana will be the youngest member of the team to line up at the Giro d'Italia.
Former pink jersey wearer Andrey Amador, who finished fourth in 2015, will be an important man for Quintana in the mountains, along with Quintana's compatriot Winner Anacona. With Rory Sutherland, Daniele Bennati and Jose Joaquin Rojas, the team has 38 Grand Tours worth of experience and three strong riders for the flat roads and shorter climbs. José Herrada, Gorka Izagirre and Victor de la Parte complete the line-up.
"This year's route is a very tough course, a demanding one. The last week has an impressive amount of mountains to overcome. Big gaps should be made there – I feel like this year's course is looking for the strongest climber to win it," Quintana said of the 2017 corsa rosa. "I went on a recon of some of the final week's stages some months ago: I had a look at Piancavallo and Asiago, as well as the previous climb to Monte Grappa, which will be a hell of a climb, but also the Blockhaus and the Foligno TT."
Quintana is aiming to become the first rider in almost 20 years to win both the Giro d'Italia and the Tour de France in the same season. He has enjoyed a strong start to the season with a victory at the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana and Tirreno-Adriatico.
Following a stint back in Colombia, Quintana returned to Europe for his final pre-Giro race at the Vuelta Asturias. Quintana won the second stage but lost time on the final day, forcing him to give up the lead to Raul Alarcon. Nevertheless, his stage win was proof that he is in good form going into the Giro d'Italia.
"We had never taken such a gamble before, yet we feel we're on the right path to success, training adequately to peak at both of them," explained Quintana. "I'm confident since I've contested the win in two Grand Tours on the same year – I didn't win both, but I've made the podium, come close or even won one of the two. Plus, it's exciting to chase the win in the 100th edition, it makes it even more attractive. And I feel like I've improved my body resistance and become more mature through the last year. That's why I think it's time for me to go after it since my physical conditions are still decent. Some other riders go for it at the end of their careers – I want to have a try now that I'm still young."
Movistar for the Giro d'Italia: Nairo Quintana, Andrey Amador, Winner Anacona, Daniele Bennati, Víctor de la Parte, José Herrada, Gorka Izagirre, José Joaquín Rojas and Rory Sutherland.
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