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Giro d'Italia - Discussion
Giro d'Italia


GT - 21 stages

6 flat, 6 hilly (2 HTF), 7 mountainous (6 MTF), 1 ITT, 1 TTT


Signore, signori, benvenuti in bella Italia! Welcome to San Lorenzo al Mare, at the Riviera ligure, at this eve of the 2020 Giro d'Italia! Before the race kicks off tomorrow, we'll present you everything you need to know about the course - and of course about the pariticipating riders!

Three exciting weeks of cycling are ahead of us, and besides cobbles, this race contains everything making this sport so beautiful! Of course, first and foremost, the Giro has the reputation of being the most climber-friendly GT - and with six mountain-top and two hill-top finishes, it absolutely does justice to that reputation once again!

But let's look at the full course, a great description of which has been made by redordead when the route was revealed!


While mainly the puncheurs will be looking forward to the first two weeks, the final 7 days - or at least 5/7 - are reserved for the climbers, promising a great spectacle! The sprinters aren't very happy about the course, with just two flat rated stages per week - we'll see in an instant if this has an impact on the sprinter field.

So let's talk about the participants now! We have three former GT winners at the start line, with the most impressive Palmarès definitely belonging to oldie pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Andy Schleck, having won every GT twice in his career! pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Simon Spilak has come back to defend his title from 2019; the Slovene has two Tour de France wins to his name as well! And finally we welcome pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Rein Taaramäe in Italy - we're not sure if it's his first participation ever, but given that his name doesn't appear in any Top 30 list nor in any stage winners list, it is very likely that the reigning Vuelta champion indeed makes his debut here! His goal will be to complete the career GT-slam, having already won Tour de France and Vuelta once each.

Which makes a total of 11 GT wins on the road for the next three weeks. We'll see if any of the former winners can add an additional win to his Palmarès - or if we get a debut winner! Let's take a look at the biggest favorites:

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Simon Spilak pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png

GT record
Giro d'Italia: 1 win (2019), 1x 3rd place (2013)
Le Tour de France: 2 wins (2011, 2017), 1x 2nd place (2018), 3x 3rd place (2010, 2014, 2016)
La Vuelta: n/a

Honor to whom honor is due - the defending champion comes first. Unlike pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Herklotz, his strongest competitor last year, he decided to come back to Italy, this time leading his new team pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Generali.

Even after his second decline, he still is among the very strongest climbers and puncheurs in this race - there are one better climber and two stronger pure puncheurs at the start line, but he definitely doesn't have to fear anyone. Except for stage 14, the 55 kilometer long time trial. He isn't among the very best in this discipline, which will likely cost him some seconds compared to the next rider we'll present. Will it be too much? Can he recover these in the hills?

Moreover, we cannot use his previous results this year as a hint, as this simply is his first race of the 2020 season! No warm-up, let's directly tackle a GT - let's see how that works out!

In terms of support, he cannot really complain. pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Talansky - another new signing - will be his lieutenant in both montains and hills. pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Dyball, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Ludvigsson and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Brown shouldn't be distanced too quickly in the mountains, either, whereas pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Rosskopf might provide some help on the hills. But most importantly, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Generali bring a very balanced TTT squad, which will surely help to not drop their leader on the first stage, and very likely be worth a good time - the perfect base to start the fight for pink!

Will he defend his title? It seems to be absolutely possible - but especially the guy presented next might cause him some serious headaches!

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Rein Taaramäe pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png

GT record
Giro d'Italia: n/a
Le Tour de France: 1 win (2018), 2x 2nd place (2015, 2016)
La Vuelta: 1 win (2019)

The Estonian will likely be pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Spilak's strongest opponent. Although the reigning Vuelta champion has gone through his first decline as well, he's still among the world's best - and he's the strongest climber making the trip to Italy! Which is somewhat disappointing for THE climber GT, given that none of the 85 MO guys and only one 84 climber is here - but pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Taaramäe definitely won't be unhappy about this!

But being the strongest climber isn't everything he brings here. While he's "only" in the lower Top 10 in terms of hill climbing, his time trialing skills are still amazing; only pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/yor.png Coppel is rated slightly higher, but that might look quite different after two weeks of racing. So he's very likely to gain time on most competitors on this ultra-long ITT stage. And last but not least, his physical stats are among the very best in the peloton, meaning that no stage will be too long or too hard for him. Given the competition, this is a great opportunity for him to complete his GT-slam, winning the only GT he hasn't won so far.

Unlike pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Spilak, the Estonian does already have quite a few race days in his legs. The start in China wasn't very convincing, though, getting only a 24th place in this hilly classic - not being the team's clear leader, though.

This was clearly different in East Java, where he was among the favorites for the overall win - and left left with a rather disappointing result again. He couldn't keep up with Phinney's winning move, and then finished last of a the group fighting for 2nd, hence going home with a 6th place.

The situation was pretty similar in Pro Hallstatt Classic, where Sicard was just too strong for the rest - but this time, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Taaramäe claimed this 2nd place, proving that he still has the legs to dream big!

In Colombia, he definitely made clear which direction his form is taking: upwards! with two stage wins, he easily won the GC of that race, proving that he's ready for what's likely his ultimate challenge this season!

Finally, let's take a look at his team. And unfortunately for him, this may actually be his weakest point. pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Quintana, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Amezawa and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Aranburu are all decent climbers for sure (with the latter two being good puncheurs as well), but there might be missing a domestique like pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Spilak has in pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Talansky. Plus, the team clearly has a weaker setup than pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Generali for the first stage, meaning that pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Taaramäe is likely to lose time in a time trial... Let's see if he can gain back all of this in the mountains or in the long ITT!

The Estonian's mission is clear: Win a GT three years in a row - it would complete his career GT-slam. He has to be the favorite, having the long ITT and mountain superiority as his biggest trump cards. But the favorite doesn't always succeed...

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Timofey Kritskiy pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png

GT record
Giro d'Italia: n/a
Le Tour de France: 1x Top 10 (6th, 2016)
La Vuelta: 1x 2nd place (2019)

The Russian is yet another rider who knows how it feels to step on a GT podium, as he did so last year in La Vuelta - finishing runner-up behind... pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Taaramäe! And when looking at his strengths and weaknesses in more detail, this doesn't come as a surprise. He's slightly weaker than the Estonian in the mountains, on the hills, in the time trials and in his physical stats - the only point where he's clearly inferior is his acceleration, which might make him miss a decisive move. But as long as he can follow someone else's wheel, he's very hard to get rid of. And he really does have everything it takes to get another GT podium, despite having declined as well.

Just like pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Spilak, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Kritskiy hasn't used his race material so far this year, so it will be interesting to see where he stands compared with the competition!

When looking at his team, one quality stands out: time trials! With pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Yatsevich, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Dal Col, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Malori, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Vorobev and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Kritskiy himself, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Team Tinkoff bring 5 riders with a TT stat of 79 or more - amazing! Winning the first stage and taking the jersey as early as possible seems to be their goal. However, defending it won't be an easy job; whereas pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Novikov and probably pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Sivakov and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Rybalkin should be able to support him in the mountains, they don't have a really strong puncheur. This might be their weak point - especially given that their leader isn't the best puncheur, either!

The podium in Spain definitely was a career highlight for the Russian. Can he add a second one? Or even a GT win?

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ubs.png Andrei Amador pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ubs.png

GT record
Giro d'Italia: 1x 3rd place (2018)
Le Tour de France: 1x 3rd place (2015)
La Vuelta: 2x Top 10 (6th, 2015; 7th, 2011)

We again step down one climbing level, arriving at 82. pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ubs.png Amador is the only representative out of 4 PT riders in this group having come to Italy, representing newly promoted pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ubs.png Team UBS. As the others before him, he has already left behind his maximum level, having declined for the second time. Nonetheless, his climbing skills are still very good, and he still handles the TT bike pretty well, too. However, his physical stats definitely aren't what they once were; stamina, recovery and especially resistance are clearly lower than his main competitors'. He's slowly losing his kick, too, and he might be suffering on the hills. But the overall package is still pretty OK - don't rule him out yet!

We might get a hint of his current level from the races he's done so far this year, Paris - Nice and Vuelta a Colombia. In France, he did a good job until day 7, after which he was inside the GC Top 10. He then dropped to 11th on the final day - even behind his domestique Schelling (who hasn't come to Italy). Which his manager found to be rather worrying.

One level down, in PTHC race Vuelta a Colombia, he then took that Top 10 spot in what was his final preparation race. Let's see if the upwards trend continues here in Italy!

He should have decent support in the mountains from pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ubs.png Schir and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ubs.png Grigrian, although a top-level domestique is missing here as well. Most of his teammates have pretty similar hilly skills as their leader, meaning nobody can really pull him uphill. This might be where he loses a great final rank - but let's see! At least, he should have a good start, with his team being comparable to pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Generali in terms of time trial skills.

With his 34 years, this will be pretty much his last shot at a GT podium - and given the rather weak starter field, that's not even impossible!

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Jack Haig pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png

GT record
Giro d'Italia: 1x Top 10 (9th, 2019)
Le Tour de France: 2x Top 20 (16th, 2017; 18th, 2018)
La Vuelta: 2x Top 20 (12th, 2019; 13th, 2017)

Now, we reach a group of climbers that is pretty well represented: the 81's. pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Haig is likely the best rounded of them, so he comes first. The Australian only has one single GT Top 10 to his name (along with a stage win at the Vuelta, back in 2017), but he has trained hard this offseason and definitely belongs to the elite climbers in this race! What makes him be named first in this group are his great ITT skills, where he's just slightly weaker than pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Taaramäe and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Kritskiy. In terms of hill riding, however, he will likely not be able to keep up with pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Taaramäe and especially pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Spilak, but given his good physical condition, he won't be easy to drop, either. Plus, he's got a decent acceleration, allowing him to get or close gaps quickly.

Just like pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Spilak and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Kritskiy, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Haig hasn't started his season yet. However, unlike the two former, he doesn't come out of the off-season weaker, but rather stronger - even though we didn't have the opportunity yet to compare him pre- and post-training. So this will be the race of truth - and he should definitely be able to improve on his best individual GT finish so far!

The team will try to help him accomplish that mission - especially in the TTT, where pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Bennelong - Mitchelton has a decent setup, as always. It's probably comparable to pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ubs.png Team UBS. In terms of uphill support, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Haig can count on pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Canty and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Roe - as we already mentioned for other teams, decent but no super-domestiques. The picture is similar for the hills, where he'll just have to hang on to the best puncheurs!

The question will be how much his training has benefitted him. He's a sure Top 10 contender - or can he even aim for more?

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png Warren Barguil pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png

GT record
Giro d'Italia: 1x Top 20 (18th, 2016)
Le Tour de France: 2x Top 10 (7th, 2018; 9th, 2019)
La Vuelta: 1x Top 10 (10th, 2019)

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png Barguil has already three GT Top 10 finishes, and aims to get his first one here in Italy this year. He matches pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Haig's climbing skills and is even a slightly stronger puncheur. His physical stats are those of a potential GT winner - especially his outstanding recovery, the best in the peloton, must be mentioned. It might allow him to attack in the 3rd and decisive week - something that should well suit him, given his good acceleration.

On the downside, he is clearly the weakest time trialist of the riders presented so far - which might cost him not only seconds, but minutes on those 55km on stage 14. Minutes he will have to recover somewhere - and as said before, the longer the race, the stronger pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png Barguil!

But how strong can we expect him to be? As for the others bar pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Taaramäe and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ubs.png Amador, he launches his season with this race, so we don't know.

What we do know is the team support he can count on. And this one is about as good as e.g. pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Spilak's for the TTT, but pretty much underwhelming when it comes down to the mountains. pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png McKenna is the team's strongest climber behind pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png Barguil - nothing against the Irishman, who will be important in the hills - which will likely not be enough to protect the leader in the high mountains. The hill support, however, as we said before, is pretty decent, with the duo pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png McKenna and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png Schönberger.

How much weight will have this lack of great mountain support? That is one important question. For the rest, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png Barguil should definitely be up to his task, with a GC Top 5 being absolutely within reach. Or can he even attack the podium?

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Rafael Reis pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png

GT record
Giro d'Italia: 1x Top 10 (10th, 2017)
Le Tour de France: 1x Top 30 (21st, 2018)
La Vuelta: n/a

The Portuguese hasn'd had the opportunity of riding many GTs so far, being engaged mostly in lower divisions. Still, he has reached the Top 10 in this race three years ago - and he'll want to do so again! He is very similar to pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Haig - a little bit weaker on the hills and in ITTs, but even stronger physical stats. His main weakness - not only compared with the Aussie - is his lack of acceleration, where he has the lowest stat of the Top 10 climbers.

Will this missing punch hurt him? The Copenhagen - Malmö TTT didn't really show that, as other skills are important for this race - which he ended in 7th place with his team.

Pro Hallstatt Classic, however, gives us a much better hint. Hopefully for him, this was just an off-day, as he only got 35th place, even behind teammate Lutsenko - a pure puncheur to whom this race was not really well-suited. He then took a break in March, to come here with fresh legs - let's see if this helped!

A look at pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png King Power's lineup gives us quite familiar feelings. pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Teklehaimanot will provide good support in the mountains, and he's as well the team's best puncheur - meaning they aren't really strong on the hills. The TTT squad is as good as most others, and pretty well-balanced as well. So pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Reis definitely shouldn't lose the race on day one - probably just a few seconds to the slightly stronger teams.

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Reis has got all it takes to get a great GT result. Acceleration isn't the most important skill, and could be compensated with great stamina and good resistance. Can he get a new best individual finish? Or a first GT stage win?

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/rak.png Chen Shikai pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/rak.png

GT record
Giro d'Italia: n/a
Le Tour de France: n/a
La Vuelta: 1x Top 30 (27th, 2015)

Being part of a newly promoted team, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/rak.png Shikai's GT history is pretty short, even shorter than pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Reis'. But his 12th place in last year's PCT individual standings clearly show us what he's capable of! The Chinese is as good a climber as pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Haig, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png Barguil and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Reis, and he's a strong time trialist as well. However, he's even weaker on the hills than pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Reis - the weakest in the list so far - which is one thing that could hold him back. The other point being his rather low stamina, which might hurt, given that the Queen Stage in week 3 is more than 230km long!

There's no question about resistance or recovery, though - that's all fine, and this might help him to hold on even when he's tired. But another disadvantage compared to several riders named before is his low acceleration - slightly better than pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Reis', but still not enough to open gaps. But he's not an attacking rider anyway.

We got a first hint of how his skillset could work on PT level this year in East Java - with PCT participation, however. In a very stacked climber field, he was able to keep up with top climber Madrazo - who was on a very bad day, however, meaning the Chinese finished 14th in both stage and GC. But given that he was "just" racing as Quintana's top domestique, this was actually a promising result!

The only other race for him was Copenhagen - Malmö; as we saw before, this race doesn't tell us much about the skills relevant for the Giro, but a good result is always nice to have. Which isn't exactly the case, as pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/rak.png Rakuten Pro Cycling only finished 16th in this race.

As pretty much all other teams so far, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/rak.png Rakuten bring a decent TTT squad, even though the top-notch time trialists are missing here. What is however top-notch is their mountain support; pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/rak.png Costagli is himself among the best 20 climbers in this race, and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/rak.png Iino should provide good support as well. For the hills, we won't really repeat ourselves... you know. Nothing spectacular.

How well does pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/rak.png Shikai handle the jump up from PCT to PT? Is he ready to lead his team in a GT? And how much will all these hilly stages hurt him?

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Andy Schleck pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png

GT record
Giro d'Italia: 2 wins (2015, 2018), 1x 3rd place (2008)
Le Tour de France: 2 wins (2014, 2016), 1x 3rd place (2013)
La Vuelta: 2 wins (2010, 2017), 1x 2nd place (2011)

The legend is back! After having won here two years ago after his first decline, the Luxembourger missed out on the podium by one spot (but 3 minutes) last year, and now, after his 3rd offseason decline, he's come down to Italy again! And amazingly, even now he's still among the Top 10 climbers - although he can't really be compared to the rider he was a few years ago anymore. Especially his stamina has suffered quite a lot, which could be an issue on the longer stages in the 3rd week.

He hasn't ever been among the greatest time trialists anyway, and now he has stepped down to "pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png Barguil - level", meaning he'll likely lose a lot on those 55 individually ridden kilometers. His quality on the hills has suffered as well, where he now just matches pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/rak.png Shikai. But something he still likes are sudden accelerations, as surprisingly his punch is still pretty good!

And how does that all work out on the road? Just as pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/rak.png Shikai, he had his first race of the season in East Java - and it didn't work out too well. He even finished outside the Top 50, behind three teammates - two of which are present in Italy, too.

Vuelta a Colombia then was his final preparation race. And it confirmed that this winter's decline indeed had an impact, as he only managed to finish 17th - still taking home the team's best result, though.

Just like pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/rak.png Shikai, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Schleck will have a good deal of support in the high mountains, by compatriots pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Kirsch and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Wirtgen. These two are at the same time the team's strongest puncheurs, trying to make their leader not lose too much time on the hilly stages. Concerning the TTT, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png EA Vesuvio have two really strong riders in pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Wirtgen and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Jungels, and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Kneisky is a decent rider as well. However, the rest of the team rather have pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Schleck's level or even below - maybe the best strategy to not drop him?

With his 35 years, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Schleck is one of the oldest riders still having a PT contract - and he's even still leading a GT squad! What can he do after yet another decline? A final GT podium? A Top 10?

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Richard Antonio Carapaz pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png

GT record
Giro d'Italia: 1x Top 20 (20th, 2017)
Le Tour de France: n/a
La Vuelta: n/a

We have arrived at the final rider being presented in detail, as he rounds off the climber's Top 10. The Ecuadorian - just as some others - was mainly riding PCT races recently, therefore not having much of a GT record. He only finished 89th in the PCT individual standings last year, which was a huge disappointment. So it's time to move up again! But even though the climber field isn't as stacked as it could have been, it will be a hard task for him. Rather low ITT and hilly skills don't really favor a great GC result, just like his low stamina.

But well, his main skill is climbing, and he does that well! And with his good resistance, he'll be difficult to drop on the long climbs - except maybe late into the longer stages. But the question is, how fast can he adapt to PT level?

The season opener in China didn't really work out for him - which doesn't come as a big surprise, given that it was a hilly race. Still, if it's an indication of what could happen on similar stages in this Giro, it isn't a positive sign.

He then rode Paris - Nice, where he primarily was on domestique duties for Alarcon. Losing a lot of time on the hilly stages didn't come as a surprise, but at least he got two Top 20 stage results in the mountains.

Pro Hallstatt Classic, his last preparation race, was a disaster for the whole team. Their best man finished 76th, and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Carapaz was down on 104th place, losing almost 12 minutes. How did he recover from this no-show? And is he strong enough to lead his team in this GT?

When looking at his support cast, we can see that there's a very similar rider who should provide him some help - pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Faglum Karlsson. However, the question is if the Swede wouldn't actually be the better leader? Sure, he's one point weaker in climbing, but a slightly better puncheur and time trialist - and has great stamina! We'll see how they handle this situation. TTT-wise, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Volvo go an pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png EA Vesuvio-like strategy: a few strong time trialists, then the leader, and some fillers. Let's see how this works out - if the prologue stat kicks in, it could actually go pretty well!

Who will lead the team? That's maybe the main question. The two strongest riders need to help each other - nobody else on the team can actually do something similar to climbing. If they play it out well, they can be a really strong duo, however - worthy of a Top 10?

One of these 10 riders is pretty likely to go home with a GT win in his bag. Or, to be fair, we'll probably have to reduce the list to the first 3 being the top favorites - especially given the lack of puncheur skills of most others. But 21 stages are a lot - and there are still 14 teams who haven't seen their leader in this list. So let's take a look at all those who are assumed to be their team's first choice, along with their best domestiques:

Climbers & domestiques

RiderMoHiTTStaResRecAccPLDom 1MoHiDom 2MoHi
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Taaramäe8477807879777578pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Quintana7671pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Amezawa7575
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Spilak8380757778757175pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Talansky7977pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Ludvigsson7672
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Kritskiy8374797775766678pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Novikov7772pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Rybalkin7573
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ubs.png Amador8273767471746975pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ubs.png Schir7772pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ubs.png Grigrian7671
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Haig8174777675787377pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Canty7573pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Bayly7474
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png Barguil8175707777827570pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png McKenna7476pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png Danacik7271
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Reis8173767876786376pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Teklehaimanot7774pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Fung7368
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/rak.png Shikai8171767476786676pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/rak.png Costagli7971pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/rak.png Iino7773
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Schleck8171707176767369pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Kirsch7974pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Wirtgen7674
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Carapaz8071727176776572pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Faglum Karlsson7973n/a
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Arndt7976567776727556pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Mager7477pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Niu7472
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/evo.png Chiarello7975737374777271pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/evo.png Vosekalns7875pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/evo.png Blums7575
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ino.png Brenes7973697380707069n/an/a
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/fes.png Bongiorno7975687777776968pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/fes.png Ioannidis7573pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/fes.png Van Niekerk7377
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/isa.png Anacona7974667572746166pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/isa.png Ji7974pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/isa.png Campero7870
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/aeg.png Valls7874717776767171pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/aeg.png Velits7972pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/aeg.png Carboni7675
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Karnulin7874707675777070pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Sosnitskiy7872pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Vervaeke7673
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/grm.png Nesset7873697776746969pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/grm.png Iturria7773pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/grm.png Laengen7673
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ebd.png Aru7874647475767064pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ebd.png Majka7671pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ebd.png Conti7373
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Kozhatayev7774727175716972pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Roman7775pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Bugge7475
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/afk.png Salinas7773717474707271pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/afk.png Martin7572pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/afk.png Paez7175
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/yor.png Kennaugh7770737170706372pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/yor.png Crncevic7469pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/yor.png Holmes7173
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Bernal7570747676776772pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Izagirre7481pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Barthe7174
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/lpu.png Fedeli6872626867636964n/an/a

This list might give us a hint at the favorites for the team standings, too - where pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Generali should definitely be high up! But the rosters of pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ubs.png Team UBS, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png EA Vesuvio and especially pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/rak.png Rakuten Pro Cycling look great, too. Or can pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/isa.png ISA - Hexacta once again pull off a good result with their depth? We'll see!

And then, we should still give a special mention to pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/aeg.png Peter Velits, who is the only rider not presented in detail having a GT podium to his name - 2nd place in the Giro d'Italia 2017. This however was before his first decline - now he just went through the third. He'll still be very valuable for his team, no doubt about this!

We can see that both wildcard teams - pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Polar and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/lpu.png Lierse SK - don't bring a leader who will really be able to challenge for the GC, and especially the latter are mainly here for development purposes. The former, however, will definitely have some ambitions for stage wins, as shows the list of puncheurs:


pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Izagirre817472647369
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/yor.png McCarthy816775748071
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demare806772817570
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Spilak808378717769
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/isa.png Vakoc807171747561
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ebd.png Boswell807173767772
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/afk.png Bystrom796872767578
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Taaramäe778479757869
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Talansky777976697563
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/fes.png Van Niekerk777375747282
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Mager777470716868

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Izagirre should definitely be around for the first two weeks, and may even be in contention for the GC lead by then - given the few mountain stages and the long ITT. However, he's not really a favorite for stage wins, given his low acceleration. And his sub-par recovery won't help him towards the end of the race - but he's still one of the top puncheurs having made the trip!

The same holds for pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/yor.png McCarthy, who can really be seen as a pure puncheur. And he'll be one to watch, especially on the longest stages, given his great stamina. His acceleration and resistance ensure he'll win most duels against pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Izagirre - but only if he manages to get clear of the next guy.

And that next guy is pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demare, who obviously has one goal in this race: the maglia ciclamino, the sprint jersey. Not only is he a great sprinter, as we'll see later - he's also among the best puncheurs. And really no-one of the other hill specialists can match his acceleration or even his sprint speed, meaning he'll be the favorite on quite a lot of hilly stages. It would be a huge disappointment for his manager to not see him in the points jersey by the end of week 2 - and then he'll have to hope for a lot of breakaway wins.

Because if the GC specialists get all those stages, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Spilak is likely to get many, many points. And even on longer hills, he should easily leave the Frenchman behind. But most of all, the hills are his great chance to gain time on all of his GC competitors. Others are more likely to win stages, given his rather low acceleration, but he should consistently be on the first spots in the hills!

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/isa.png Vakoc again is a pure puncheur, with some climbing skills however, just as pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ebd.png Boswell. Both will try to get some stage wins for their teams, with the former being a better sprinter, and the latter having better acceleration and resistance. But both will need a great game plan if they are to beat especially pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demare.

How well does pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/afk.png Bystrom handle the jump up from CT to PT, and even in a GT? Slightly weaker on both hills and mountains than the two former riders, his advantage is his great fighter spirit - as sometimes the most daring rider actually gets the win!

Something that pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/fes.png Van Niekerk will surely be hoping for as well. The South African is a pretty good climber, and together with his good resistance might be able to keep up with some stronger puncheurs - or even distance them.

Even pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Taaramäe belongs to the 11 strongest puncheurs in this race, showing why he really is among the top favorites GC-wise. Although he isn't the best hill rider, his acceleration and resistance will surely help him not to lose too much time to the best puncheurs.

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Talansky's role is pretty different, as he's pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Spilak's super-domestique - just making the latter even more dangerous on these stages! The US American will probably not be allowed to go for stage wins on his own, but he's still in this list for completeness.

Which somehow holds as well for pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Mager. Although he's a decent hybrid rider, the lowest resistance and stamina in this list surely won't help him - and he'll mainly be here to support pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demare anyway.

There are still some more stage hunters - remember, we have six flat stages, therefore some sprinters have made the trip as well.


pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demare8281727380
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/afk.png Kennaugh8281717780
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ebd.png Van Poppel8178717278
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Appollonio8178667472
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/fes.png Nizzolo8079677371
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/evo.png Eislers8076767774
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Meyer8076657274
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ino.png Goss8075687276
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Afewerki7980707381
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Hsu7979707573
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ino.png Suryadi7976687176
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png Granjel Cabrera7975697480

This list underlines pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demare's status as a clear favorite for the maglia ciclamino. Together with pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/afk.png Kennaugh, he should dominate the sprints, as these two are the fastest and have the best acceleration of the whole pack.

And pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demare furthermore brings a great team for the sprints, with pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Aregger as his final leadout and both pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Cavagna and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Sagiv as strong rouleurs for the sprint preparation. By the way, the whole team will be able to support their top-sprinter in either the hills or the sprint or both - which is even true for most!

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/afk.png Kennaugh's slight advantage over the Frenchman might be his clearly higher flat skills. Leadout-wise, he has pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/afk.png Major and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/afk.png Clarke with him - but the latter's flat skills and physical values aren't really great for a sprint train. Furthermore, they don't really have any riders to reel in breakaways, so they will have to rely on the other teams.

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ebd.png Van Poppel and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Appollonio are the next couple of pretty similar sprinters. Same top speed, same acceleration, with the former having better resistance and the latter being stronger on the flat. The Italian doesn't like long stage races, though. And he won't have a leadout, nor a team that breakaways should be afraid of. This is slightly different for pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ebd.png Van Poppel, who has pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ebd.png Van der Kooij by his side, and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ebd.png Vermeltfoort to catch some escapees.

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/fes.png Nizzolo, on the other hand will definitely be all alone, as his teammates will focus on supporting pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/fes.png Bongiorno or pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/fes.png Van Niekerk. And surprisingly pretty much the same holds for pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/evo.png Eislers, whose team decided to send only one additional strong flat rider in pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/evo.png Naud. It remains to be seen how the Latvian handles his rather low acceleration - but at least he can do really long sprints thanks to great resistance!

Resistance - something that pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Meyer has not really heard of yet. So it's his job to prove that it isn't as important as they always say. However, as most others, he won't have a lot of help for the sprint preparation. At least, he can count on pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Wohler for chasing down breakaways, and bringing him into a good position.

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ino.png Goss' acceleration is even worse - but at least he brings a good sprint team, with pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ino.png Suryadi - on the above list as well - and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ino.png Gani as his leadouts. They both don't have much of a better acceleration either, so that could actually work. But will it be enough to challenge pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demare or pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/afk.png Kennaugh?

The same can be asked of pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Afewerki and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Hsu, too. But compared to the three previously named sprinters, they do have a good acceleration, and some decent resistance as well. Both aren't bad on the flat, either.

Furthermore, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Afewerki will be looking forward to the third week, given his great recovery - where he's one of the best in the peloton. Leadout-wise, he can count on pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Kanter, and with pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Kneisky they have a big flat engine on the team as well. pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Hsu, on the other hand, will try to make good use of time trialist pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Viviani for the sprint preparation.

As we said, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ino.png Suryadi is here as a leadout, whereas pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png Granjel Cabrera again is one of these all-alone sprinters. Positioning will be key for him as well, given his low acceleration and resistance - short, well-timed sprints are a must for him.

And finally, there's that one stage that will likely lead to big time gaps - the ITT on stage 14. Some specialists have come here just for this one stage:

Time trialists

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/yor.png Coppel81757569
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Taaramäe80797477
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Yatsevich80817067
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ubs.png Dillier80777067
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Kritskiy79757476
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png Hepburn79777172
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Viviani79777874
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Malori79737872
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Mullen79747572
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Vorobev79717567
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Haugard79777270
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Dal Col79727168
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Van Winden79687372

In a one-day race, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/yor.png Coppel might have been the favorite for this one - but given that the riders will already have 13 stages in their legs - and most pure time trialists don't recover that well - we'll likely have a duel pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Taaramäe vs pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Kritskiy for the stage win. Of course, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Yatsevich and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ubs.png Dillier shouldn't be ruled out, just as pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/yor.png Coppel shouldn't, but experience shows that the GC riders are more likely to get a great stage result here.

Of those listed here, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png Hepburn and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Viviani might have the highest chances to challenge the GC riders, given their good resistance and at least decent recovery. Or will pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Malori be able to turn his great flat stat into a top result?

What seems to be more likely is that the likes of pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Haig, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Reis or pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/rak.png Shikai will finish high up - but let's see!

But while we're talking about time trials, let's take a look at the TTT squads as well! Given the shortness of the TTT, we take for each rider the stronger value between TT and PL. We then take on one hand the average values of the full team, and on the other hand the average of the Top 5 per team. We finally build a weighted average of 1x the whole team and 3x the Top 5 - as everyone counts, but the best riders count more. This gives us the following list:


TeamAvg. TT allAvg. TT Top 5Avg. Weighted
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Team Tinkoff - La Datcha76.2579.2078.46
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png King Power75.7578.2077.59
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ubs.png Team UBS75.7577.4076.99
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/rak.png Rakuten Pro Cycling74.7577.0076.44
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Generali75.5076.4076.18
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Bennelong - Mitchelton73.3876.6075.79
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Volvo acc. by Spotify72.0076.8075.60
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png Moser - Sygic71.5075.8074.73
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/aeg.png Aegon - Peroni73.0075.0074.50
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Aker - MOT71.6375.2074.31
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png EA Vesuvio72.5074.6074.08
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Gazelle71.5073.6073.08
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Polar71.1773.0072.54
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/yor.png cycleYorkshire69.1373.6072.48
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/grm.png Grieg-Maersk70.3873.0072.34
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/isa.png ISA - Hexacta70.7572.6072.14
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/fes.png Festina - OAKA69.1372.0071.28
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ino.png Indosat Ooredoo68.7571.6070.89
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Team Puma - SAP67.3872.0070.84
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Isostar - Specialized68.0070.6069.95
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ebd.png eBuddy67.0068.8068.35
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/lpu.png Lierse SK - Pizza Ullo PCTeam65.8367.0066.71
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/evo.png Evonik - ELKO64.3867.2066.49
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/afk.png Air France - KLM63.8866.6065.92

As we already saw in the GC riders preview, we have many similarly strong teams - pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ubs.png Team UBS, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/rak.png Rakuten, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Generali, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Bennelong or pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Volvo, but pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png King Power and especially pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Team Tinkoff stand above the rest. Let's see if it works out this way on the road tomorrow!

At the bottom, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/evo.png Evonik will likely have a hard fight to defend their reputation of being the most TT ignoring team in the world, with several other teams not much stronger or even worse. Especially for pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/lpu.png Lierse SK, we shouldn't forget that they only bring 6 riders, which is true for pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Polar as well.

Now, let's quickly take a look at those riders who don't like to ride in the peloton. Some of them will attack on flat stages, some in the mountains, some on the hills - there's someone for each terrain!


pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/afk.png Edet84666976
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/fes.png Van Niekerk82697377
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Nych82766867
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/evo.png Vosekalns81667875
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Vorobev81756365
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Wohler80775866
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/grm.png Cosnefroy80756871
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ubs.png Abreu79737373
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/afk.png Bystrom78726879
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Bayly78717474
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/evo.png Naud78766273
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Kruijswijk78777571
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Gabburo78746774
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Van Winden78735262
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Campenaerts78715469
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Kosic78725866

Finally, let's talk about a category of riders we haven't mentioned yet: the youngsters! We have 43 riders under 25 years at the start line - almost a quarter of the peloton - and let's look at those who should have the best chances of being high up in the GC!

U25 riders

pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Roman7775647173747658
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Wirtgen7674787574737278
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/aeg.png Carboni7675677171716867
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Geoghegan Hart7673747473736974
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Powless7571767473747176
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Amezawa7575647577787360
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Aranburu7575636978726963
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Bernal7570747676776772
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/evo.png Blums7575687072726871
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Sivakov7569727574786871
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Foss7469727476756868
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/isa.png Sendeku7471727072726871
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/yor.png Crncevic7469716969736970
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/yor.png Munoz7468657070706757
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/fes.png Van Niekerk7377657275767465
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Fernandes7369757776746775
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/evo.png Budenieks7374637074717361
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Fung7368726670717070

While pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Roman is the strongest climber among them, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Wirtgen might actually have a great advantage given his TT strength. pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/aeg.png Carboni, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Amezawa, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Aranburu and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/evo.png Blums are all really well-rounded riders, too - but they're all lacking some speed on their TT bike.

Which might make the difference with the likes of pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Geoghegan Hart or pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Powless, if they can keep up on the hills. When speaking of hills, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/fes.png Van Niekerk should be superior to all others - but he'll likely lose time on the longer climbs.

Another favorite might be pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Bernal, if his team really considers him to be the leader and supports him accordingly, while all others are here to help their leader. Except if pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Roman gets to lead his team instead of pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Kozhatayev, who is just slightly stronger - in this case, the Serb should be the favorite for this jersey.

But much more than in the GC, breakaways can have an influence for this classification - hence anyone who is lucky enough to get huge gaps with breakaway could win. Still, chances are high that a rider from the above list will take home the maglia bianca.

Are you still with us? Congratulations! We have reached the end of the 2020 Giro rider presentation, with only one thing missing: The startlist! Have fun going through it, and see you soon out on the Italian roads!


Only 15 Italians are partaking in their home GT, the most ambitious of them probably being pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/fes.png Bongiorno and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ebd.png Aru in terms of GC, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Viviani, pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Dal Col and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Malori in the long ITT, and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Appollonio and pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/fes.png Nizzolo for the sprints. Home team pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Generali have not even a single home rider lined up, but should still have the Tifosi's support.

Note: Most reports will come in two or more parts, with the posts likely separated by 30-60 minutes.
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Stage results

StageWinner2nd place3rd place
1pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png King Powerpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Team Tinkoffpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Bennelong
2pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Appolloniopcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demarepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png Granjel Cabrera
3pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Gabburopcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Bizkarra
4pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ebd.png Contipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Bizkarrapcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Barthe
5pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/isa.png Sendekupcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/evo.png Budenieks
6pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Nychpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/afk.png Kennaughpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ino.png Goss
7pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Buggepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demarepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Bayly
8pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/rak.png Costaglipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Kruijswijkpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png McKenna
9pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/isa.png Vakocpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Rosskopfpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/aeg.png van der Poel
10pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/isa.png Contreraspcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/evo.png Eislerspcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demare
11pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/aeg.png van der Poelpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Romanpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Kruijswijk
12pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/aeg.png van der Poelpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png Barguilpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Taaramäe
13pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demarepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/evo.png Eislerspcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/afk.png Kennaugh
14pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/yor.png Coppelpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Taaramäepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Kritskiy
15pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/isa.png Anaconapcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Carapazpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/aeg.png Velits
16pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Talanskypcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/grm.png Nessetpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Kozhatayev
17pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ebd.png Boswellpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/lpu.png Gamperpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Dyball
18pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Wirtgenpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Teklehaimanotpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Bernal
19pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png Barguilpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Taaramäepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Faglum Karlsson
20pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Carapazpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Spilakpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Taaramäe
21pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demarepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/afk.png Kennaughpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Hsu


1pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Hsun/an/apcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Hsupcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png King Power
2pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Appolloniopcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Appolloniopcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ino.png Setiawapcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Hsupcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png King Power
3pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Appolloniopcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/evo.png Budeniekspcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Isostar
4pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Bizkarrapcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Bizkarrapcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Bizkarrapcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Isostar
5pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Polar
6pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Polar
7pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demarepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Gazelle
8pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demarepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Gazelle
9pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demarepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/isa.png Vakocpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Gazelle
10pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demarepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/isa.png Vakocpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Gazelle
11pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demarepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/isa.png Vakocpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Gazelle
12pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demarepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Romanpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Gazelle
13pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demarepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Romanpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Gazelle
14pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demarepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Romanpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Gazelle
15pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demarepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Romanpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Gazelle
16pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demarepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Romanpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Gazelle
17pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demarepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Romanpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Gazelle
18pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demarepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Romanpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Gazelle
19pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Taaramäepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demarepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Romanpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Gazelle
20pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Taaramäepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demarepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Carapazpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Gazelle
21pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Taaramäepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demarepcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Carapazpcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Maleckipcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Gazelle

Podiums per Team

TeamStage wins2nd places3rd placesTotal
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/isa.png ISA - Hexacta3104
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Isostar - Specialized2226
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Team Puma - SAP2215
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Volvo acc. by Spotify2114
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/aeg.png Aegon - Peroni2024
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ebd.png eBuddy2002
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Gazelle1214
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Generali1214
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png Moser - Sygic1124
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png King Power1113
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Polar1023
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/rak.png Rakuten Pro Cycling1001
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/yor.png cycleYorkshire1001
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png EA Vesuvio1001
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Aker - MOT0224
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/evo.png Evonik - ELKO0213
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/afk.png Air France - KLM0213
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Team Tinkoff - La Datcha0112
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/grm.png Grieg-Maersk0101
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/lpu.png Lierse SK - Pizza Ullo PCTeam0101
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Bennelong - Mitchelton0022
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ino.png Indosat Ooredoo0011
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/fes.png Festina - OAKA0000
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ubs.png Team UBS0000

Podiums per Rider
TTT excluded

RiderStage wins2nd places3rd placesTotal
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pum.png Demare2215
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/aeg.png van der Poel2013
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Malecki1102
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png Barguil1102
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Carapaz1102
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Appollonio1001
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Gabburo1001
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ebd.png Conti1001
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Nych1001
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Bugge1001
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/rak.png Costagli1001
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/isa.png Vakoc1001
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/isa.png Contreras1001
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/yor.png Coppel1001
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/isa.png Anacona1001
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Talansky1001
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ebd.png Boswell1001
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/eav.png Wirtgen1001
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/akm.png Taaramäe0224
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/afk.png Kennaugh0213
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/evo.png Eislers0202
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Bizkarra0112
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gzl.png Kruijswijk0112
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/isa.png Sendeku0101
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Rosskopf0101
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Roman0101
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/grm.png Nesset0101
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/lpu.png Gamper0101
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Teklehaimanot0101
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Spilak0101
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/tti.png Kritskiy0011
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png Granjel Cabrera0011
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Barthe0011
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/evo.png Budenieks0011
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/ino.png Goss0011
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/bnm.png Bayly0011
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/mos.png McKenna0011
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/aeg.png Velits0011
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/iso.png Kozhatayev0011
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Dyball0011
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/pol.png Bernal0011
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/vlv.png Faglum Karlsson0011
pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/kng.png Hsu0011

Edited by Fabianski on 29-01-2021 22:53
Such a great preview and then I show up with this squad. Truely, I am ashamed of my team here but there were just too many race clashes.
Changed my sig, this was getting absurd.
That`s some huge preview! Very detailed and lots of information for all teams.

For my team it`s hopefully a good sign of what to expect from GTs as the Vuelta basically has the same startlist.

Valls could fight for a top15 here just like Velits. Though hopefully one of them also going for KoM and stage points in 3rd week as having two of high 70`s climbers hopefully giving them freedom then.

Carboni is interesting to be a potential top3 in the U25 ranking, but I fear he will have less freedom as others or in Wirtgen`s case, not being pulled with a stronger leader to a good GC spot. Vesuvio might have a huge year of U25 titles in GTs starting with Wirtgen here.

Ciccone could be another rider with potential breakaway/KoM success obviously.

Just hope the AI doesn`t use Boom/Frison/Van der Poel too often on mountain stages for breaks instead.

Van der Poel might have a very free role here and could surprise on a harder finish or from a break, but not sure his main stats are strong enough to be given a shot by the AI.

Boom and Koep for nostalgia reasons and TTT here. Not expecting a lot by them but a break appearance.

GC wise Taaramae looks superior while Spilak, Kritkisy should give him some challenge while Demare could be in for another dominant Giro stage hunting as couple years ago but not sure PCM18 will be as friendly to him as PCM15.

Afewerki obviously always a sprinter for GTs and also Kennaugh or Van Poppel should be in for a stage.

PCT teams with small 6 rider teams is a bit of a pity to see, in especially as the strongest riders seem to be needed in clashing races.

Regarding the PT Rankings, Bongiorno and in especially Nizzolo might be able to attack Evonik here. That said, later will again show up with 3rd tier riders, taking 2 stages and the KoM I guess as usual with Eislers winning a stage and being very consistent. Pfft
Last year Bongiorno was quite impressive in the Giro on several stages before fading in the 3rd week.

Thanks for the great preview and looking forward to the reports!
Awesome preview Fabianski, and thanks for linking my route description Smile

As Ollfardh mentioned it's such a busy part of the year with clashes, so I empathise with his squad selection.

Go Spilak!! Banana


"I am a cyclist, I may not be the best, but that is what I strive to be. I may never get there, but I will never quit trying." - Tadej PogaÄŤar
Awesome preview! I love the chances that Roman has going for white, that's our main ambition here.

Very weak startlist, which will benefit the likes of Spilak, Taaramae and Demare especially. Great to see Spilak having another chance to win the Giro!
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Massive preview.

Van Poppel will be very interesting in the sprints. Should be in the mix for podiums and maybe even a stage win.

Aru is our only hope for breakaways as I've learned not to expect anything from Boswel this year.
That's a great preview, Fabianski, thanks for that. I also like the overview in the second post. I hope my team will appear there a few times.

I could send a good TTT squad to either the Tour or here and decided to do it here to support Reis in his quest for a good GC. However looking at the Tinkoff squad I doubt a win in the first stage, which will see the victor score massive ranking points, is possible. I hope it will at least put Reis in a good position in the fight against all of the similarly strong climbers. Other than that I'm hoping for Hsu to get some good results in the sprint stages.
@roturn: Good to know that the Vuelta startlist is similarly strong/weak I was hoping to hit the two weaker GTs with my race selection for Reis!
Loved the preview!

Considered sending a strong TTT lineup, but in the end it came down to that WĂĽrtz probably had to be here for us to have any chance of a win. Okay, there's a pan flat TT on stage 14, but they usually tend to be for the GC favourites when they come so far out in a race.

Other than that it should be a team well suited to an attacking race! Nesset have shown before that he does well over three weeks and top 20 will be his goal. He hasn't shown much this season, but I have huge belief in Cosnefroy and now he doesn't have to pace the bunch for half of the race. Hope to see him in some breaks the next weeks!

Should be a great battle between Rein and Spilak for the win, with Rein probably as the favourite.
Ohhhh the excitement for GT season! Grin And what a preview to get started!

We've hit a major jackpot here with the sprinters lineup, which didn't come entirely unexpected.
The TTT to start the race, as well as the difficult flat stages that ensue, certainly deterred the major competitors for Demare, which was exactly what I was banking on when deciding on his return to a race that he dominated in '18, crossing the finish line first on 6 occasions to tie an all-time record of stage wins in a single GT.

Now, as it has already been pointed out, being a clear favorite for the sprints has been a rather unfortunate position going into most races this season.

However, we should have a clear advantage in the sprint preparation thanks to our new addition Aregger following either our flat beasts Cavagna/Sagiv, or our allround gem Niu.
I am cautiously optimistic we can consistently field the strongest leadout that should be able to delay the launch of Demare long enough to reduce the risk of slipstream overtakes, not too dissimilar to what Podium Ambition has shown at times when Aberasturi/Nelson worked out as intended.

With Demare being listed as #11 on the startlist, I hope the game will grace him with advantageous positioning throughout the race and assign him the priority that he deserves.

Furthermore, it's obviously a tough task to most sprinters on the startlist to even make the sprint finish on a significant amount of stages with a flat finish, most of which are simultaneously not hard enough on paper to break up the peloton into too small pieces for Demare to be among the first of them.

Obviously, it's a concern that hilly rated stages might see us not make any use of our leadout and dissolve into chaos, but even from chaos, Demare can find his way to the line first.

Spilak is definitely a tough competitor for the ciclamino as well as a handful of stages, but I'm confident he's nowhere close to unbeatable anymore, and his sp/acc are far from scary by now.
I am quite hopeful that most of the third week stages should see massive breakaways in PCM18 that are likely to take opportunities away from the GC riders to slip into the jersey, and combining these two things, we're clearly aiming to finally take the maglia ciclamino home that already should've been rightfully Demare's in 2018, where even six stage wins weren't enough to do so.

I see stages 2, 3, 4, 6, potentially 7, 10, 11, 12, 13, 17 and 21 as winnable stages for Demare.
Only stage 9 should favor Spilak over Demare outright, with stage 7 being a tossup.

From experience, I think flat and easy hilly stages are much less likely to see breakaway wins in this edition than mountainous stages, and with our team being very much focused on Demare, I hope we can reel in breaks on all of these days if a few teams think it's worth helping us.
In that regard, I'm very happy that at least Air France and eBuddy don't have any GC hopefuls to protect alongside helping Kennaugh and van Poppel. We three teams should be able to control the race.

As mentioned in the brilliant preview, our team is here entirely to support Demare on his two preferred terrains, with Nikias Arndt being a wildcard for a Top 10 result in the GC if the gaps get large enough for him to overcome his horrendous TTing.
With most climbers in Arndt's MO range being rather awful in short, intense efforts, I'm hoping he can overperform similar to his exploits in the just finished Volta a Colombia.
If the desired GC result is too far-fetched, Arndt should be the perfect candidate to join the large breaks in the latter half of the race to fight for the KoM jersey.

Our sprint setup, as mentioned above, consists of Marcel Aregger, RĂ©mi Cavagna, Guy Sagiv and Yikui Niu.
Aregger has his chance to prove his signing this transfer season was worth it, as these are the 21 race days that were on our mind when pursuing him.
Aregger is decent in the hills, which is still better than practically any main sprinter present, and the puncheur strenght increases in our second and third links of the sprint train.
Cavagna is a flat/hill beast, Sagiv pretty much the same rider as long as we're not in TT or cobbled terrain, and Niu will hopefully manage to juggle support roles for Arndt in the mountains and Demare in the sprints and tougher hilly stages well.

Christian Mager could be a favorite on his own for some puncheur stages, but obviously his sole purpose in this squad is to help Demare and Arndt.

And finally, our youngster Valentin Madouas is here to gather more GT experience, as well as showcasing his allround skills to be of use for our two leaders on any terrain.
Really hoping for a good result with Shikai here. The weaker startlist was not my expectation, but its the best GT for him with the most TT KMs, making the other two better for Quintana. Pointing out his weaker hills is perhaps worrying, but I hope his solid Rec makes up for that. Also, Shikai won a GT last year Pfft

We also have some of the better supports here, with a decent MO squad, and a one of the better TTT setups as well. Im not expecting a podium, but seeing where others rank, I think a Top 10 has to be the minimum for Shikai. Salcone may be a good break candidate, but Im hoping Costagli, if he's not supporting Shikai is off fighting for the KOM. As an Italian he needs to go on the attack for the fans, especially if there are not too many in the race this year.
Hype levels through the damn roof for this one!!! Going to be the single most important race in the team's history. Home race, Spilak as a top 3 favourite with a massive point-scoring potential (I'm happy about the field here), extremely solid supporting team and a favourable profile. With cobbles behind us, this is our time to shine and get back in the ranking spots we belong in.

The opener is already going to be fundamental, need the gang to perform the way they're supposed to, in order to put Spilak in a favourable position ahead of stage 4 and beyond.

Really looking forward to it, fantastic job on the preview Fabianski!
Manager of pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png Generali pcmdaily.com/images/mg/2020/Micros/gen.png
Brilliant preview Fabianski! Thanks for that Smile

After the horrible show in one of our key races (Praha) we could really use some salvation here. We don't exactly have the team to get that but we could need it nontheless.

I like the sprint opportunities for Nizzolo here with him realistically being in the mix 6 times (If he survives the mountains). Being no #4-7 without any proper helpers is usually the right place to be unless the dominating sprinter makes it work - which does happen occasionally.

The GC battle is really weak, so this was probably the best possible race for Lecuisinier - and this also bodes really difficult for the Liechtenstein race as only Taaramäe of the 4-5 riders that can regularly beat Lecuisinier is present. He would have had a very good shot at winning this race, although Taaramäe is the better TT'er and Spilak the better puncheur.

I can only hope that we can instead see ourselves be very active and because of that we have brought the duo that worked brilliantly last season - Kastrantas and van Niekerk. The latter have possibly been upgraded in the off season just a tad too much for him to get the leeway he needs to be succesfull. but I really hope I'm mistaken and we'll get to see him again and again! He does have some very handy stats for stage 4, 7, 11 and 12 in particular, while Ioannidis might be a decent allrounder to finish around 50 or so.

Bongiorno is the big questions mark. He did reasonably well last season in the GT's, and on paper he does have an outside chance of a top 10 finish, while 12-15 seems like the realistic option. Maybe he can get enough freedom to get into the breaks regularly as he's among the worse TT'ers here and we will lose time on those terrains (including the TTT). I have build my team around that atleast, so let's hope it works out.

Demare obviously the man to watch for the sprints, but I see Eislers and Kennaugh in particular being able to tease him on the more flat stages. It will be very interesting to see if he can dominate on the hilly stuff also, or if those are being handed to the breakway riders - I can only hope for Aidan to join those puncheurs here and get some KOM points and some stagesucces.

On paper there is a difficult way towards a good U25 position here, but if Aidan is aggressive he should have a fair shot at top 5 atleast - maybe even podium. 73MO isn't great, but isn't too horrible either and seeing him win the U23 WC last season he showed that he can climb rather well.

Amazing preview, I'm really excited about this race, looking at all the different battles (again perfectly outlined in this preview) this could be the race of the season!
Nice preview. I'm mostly hoping we can do some cool stuff from breakaways. And it'll be interesting to follow the Powless/Hart duo battling for a high U25 spot.

Good luck to the real contenders!
Not last, what a great success to start the race!
Changed my sig, this was getting absurd.
Bikex wrote:
I also like the overview in the second post. I hope my team will appear there a few times.

The first update doesn't look that bad for you Wink
Awesome preview, dont have high hopes for us here, Carapaz fighting for a top 10 GC hopeefully and maybe we can snatch a stage!

Solid start with 7th in TTT!
Great... Not sure how we are that bad.
Beating four teams. Quite an achievement Pfft
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