Sagan to make debut in Milan-Sanremo as a dark horse for success
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Friday, March 18, 2011

Sagan to make debut in Milan-Sanremo as a dark horse for success

by Conal Andrews at 7:27 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Milan-Sanremo
Talented 21 year old could be a factor in finale

Peter SaganThe favourites have been listed, but one rider who can’t be forgotten for Milan-Sanremo is the talented Slovakian Peter Sagan. He’s landed three stages plus first overall in the Giro di Sardegna this season, as well as clocking up three top ten placings in Paris-Nice.

While a crash meant that his campaign in the French race wasn’t as successful as in 2010, when he won two stages plus the points classification, he is undoubtedly a rider of huge class and has a strong sprint. He will be a danger man if he makes it over the Poggio tomorrow in the front group.

“The grazes from the fall in France are still bothering me slightly but I don’t want to miss this race. I’ve got to know everything about the Milano-Sanremo on YouTube: all the different finales, attacks and counterattacks, so I don’t really know what to expect,” he said.

“I’ve looked at the last 80 kilometres with DS Zanatta: the climbs suit me but the thing that worries me most is the overall distance. So far my longest race has been 260 kilometres, and I still don’t know what my stamina will be like over 300 kilometres. I’ll give it my best shot, that’s what the team expects: there’s no pressure to win. Everyone trusts me and so I’m calm and happy.”

Other past winners have been in the same position heading into the race, vis-à-vis the distance. This group includes the 2009 winner Mark Cavendish; if the rider is strong enough, he’ll be there in the finale. Tomorrow will reveal if Sagan can be a factor.

He is clear that there’s many riders he must watch. “I was impressed with how Cancellara won in 2008 and I see him as a threat again this year,” he stated. “Then there’s Gilbert, Boonen, Hushovd, Haussler, Pozzato… there’s so many, I’ll need eyes in the back of my head to keep a check on all of them.”

He will be joined by Liquigas-Cannondale team-mate Vincenzo Nibali, as well as Valerio Agnoli, Damiano Caruso, Mauro Finetto, Tiziano Dall’Antonia, Kristijan Koren and Alan Marangoni.


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