MCipollini-Giambenini taking aim at the Giro Donne
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Thursday, June 21, 2012

MCipollini-Giambenini taking aim at the Giro Donne

by Ben Atkins at 12:41 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Giro d'Italia
Italian superteam aiming to match Corsa Rosa performance of “brother team” Farnese Vini-Selle Italia

monia baccailleMCipollini-Giambenini has announced its line up for the upcoming Giro d’Italia Femminile - the Giro Donne - which starts in the southern city of Napoli on June 29th. Despite the team’s star-studded roster, results so far this season meant that it had to rely on a wildcard invitation from the race organiser; those stars though, meant that the invitation was a virtual certainty.

An important motivator for the team in this year’s race is the performance of its “brother team” Farnese Vini-Selle Italia, in the men’s Giro, in May. The team took two stage wins, through Andrea Guardini and Matteo Rabottini, as well as the mountains jersey through Rabottini, which gives the women something to aim at.

“We are very happy to be among the teams selected for the Giro d'Italia,” said the team’s president Alessia Piccolo. “We are ready and we will give our best to honour the race that is the highlight event of the season

“The yellow-fluo boys did very well in "their Giro”; with two stages won and a lot of kilometres on the attack,” she explained. “Farnese Vini-Selle Italia was one of the protagonists of the race. We will try to make sure that the yellow-fluo will continue to shine on the streets of our country.

“Last year, Tatiana Guderzo finished the race in fourth position, first among the Italian girls. For us that was a very satisfying race and this year we will try to reach other aims.”

The team will be spearheaded once again by 2009 World champion Guderzo, whose fourth place in last year’s race earned her the blue jersey of best Italian. The team’s most successful rider this year though, has been sprinter Monia Baccaille (pictured); the former two-time national champion won the sprint for fifth - behind winner Giada Borgato and the other three breakaways - in yesterday’s championship race, which will doubtless give her confidence as she takes on the likes of Ina Teutenberg, Marianne Vos, and Giorgia Bronzini.

While the team has yet to be announced, it will doubtless also include 2007 World champion Marta Bastianelli, who took the bronze medal in the Italian championships; albeit riding - like Baccaille and Guderzo - for GS Fiamme Azzurre. The 25-year-old from Lazio is a very different athlete from the one she was before her 2008 ban for testing positive for Flenfluramine - where an obsession with her weight caused her to inadvertently ingest the substance - but she remains a force to be reckoned with.

Despite the team’s relatively poor showing so far this season, directeur sportif Luisiana Pegoraro is confident that the team of stars can rise to its biggest challenge of the season so far.

"We're growing, we came back from the Giro del Trentino with good feelings and the Italian Championship have given us important confirmations,” she said. “The Giro d'Italia is the most important event of the season, we'll give our best, we want to be leaders. We aim for the podium with our leader Tatiana Guderzo".


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