Fresh from winning the madison at the London World Championships, Bradley Wiggins could return to the road at the Settimana Internazionale Coppi e Bartali later this month. Wiggins has been named amongst the riders entered for the 2.1 stage race as part of his Team WIGGINS squad. The Gruppo Sportivo Emilia organised event takes place March 24-27 with a split stage day in Gatteo kicking off proceedings.
Wiggins started his 2016 season on the road with four one-day races in Spain before heading to the Dubai Tour in preparation for the Track Worlds, where he also won a silver medal in the team pursuit.
While the 35-year-old will be making his first appearance at Settimana Internazionale Coppi e Bartali, Wiggins has enjoyed success at Italian stages races, namely the Giro d'Italia when he won the opening stage of the 2010 race to pull on the maglia rosa. Wiggins' teammates for the race are set to be announced in the coming weeks.
Individual pursuit world champion Filippo Ganna will also return to the road after the London Worlds, racing with the Italian national team under the supervision of Italian national coach Davide Cassani.
There is WorldTour representation with Team Sky, while the list of Pro-Continental teams are led by Italian squads Southeast, Androni Giocattoli–Sidermec, Nippo–Vini Fantini and Bardiani–CSF. A stage winner at the last two editions of the race, Ben Swift is one of three Team Sky riders confirmed for the race alongside Gianni Moscon and Sebastian Henao.
Gazprom–Rusvelo, Verva Activejet Procycling Team and Topsport Vlaanderen–Baloise increase the number of Pro-Continental starters to seven, with 15 Continental teams also lining up including Dimension Data's Conti team and American squad Rally Cycling.
The race starts with a 95.9km stage from Gatteo with a finish that is expected to suit the sprinters. A 13.3km team time trial will then follow in the afternoon and will see each team field two four-man squads. Stage 2 then takes the riders from Riccione to Sogliano al Rubicone where a finishing circuit that features a climb with peaks of 16% is sure to shake up the overall standings.
Stage 3 is as flat as a billiards table and will be a day for the sprinters to enjoy before the testing fourth and final stage in Pavullo with several climbs set to decide the overall winner of the 2016 edition of the race.
Teams and provisional starters for the 2016 Settimana Internazionale Coppi e Bartali (March 24-27)
Italy: Filippo Ganna
Team Sky: Sebastian Henao, Gianni Moscon, Ben Swift
Southeast–Venezuela: Belletti, Fedi
Androni Giocattoli – Sidermec: France Pellizotti, Francesco Chicchi, Francesco Gavazzi
Bardiani–CSF: Stefano Pirazzi, Francesco ManuelBongiorno
Gazprom–Rusvelo: Alexandr Kolobnev, Sergey Firsanov, Mamyr Stash
Nippo–Vini Fantini: Grega Bole
Verva Activejet Procycling Team
Topsport Vlaanderen–Baloise: Kenny De Ketele
Team WIGGINS: Bradley Wiggins
D'Amico–Bottecchia: Fabio Chinello
Cycling Academy Team: Guillaume Boivin
GM Europa Ovini: Filippo Fortin
Norda MG KVis: Michele Scartezzini, Nicola Gaffurini
Meridiana Kamen: Emanuel Kišerlovski
Unieuro–Wilier: Mauro Finetto, Alessandro Malaguti
Christina Jewelery: Stefan Schumacher
Tirol Cycling Team: Clemens Fankhauser
Skydive Dubai Pro Cycling Team: Ivan Santaromita, Andrea Palini, Marlen Zmorka, Giuliano Kamberaj
Dimension Data Continental Team
Amore & Vita–Selle SMP: Mattia Gavazzi
Adria Mobil : Jure Golčer
Kolss–BDC Team: Oleksandr Polivoda