Elia Viviani to skip Giro d'Italia to ride Tour de France as preparation for Tokyo 2020

The Italian will target gold on the track at the Olympic Games

Elia Viviani at the 2019 Tour de France (Jeff Pachoud/AFP via Getty Images)
(Image credit: AFP via Getty Images)

Elia Viviani's plans for 2020 with his new Cofidis team are beginning to emerge, with the Italian set to target a number of high-profile events after a successful 2019 campaign.

According to Italian newspaper La Repubblica, Viviani will target Milan - San Remo in the early season, before skipping the Giro d'Italia to ride the Tour de France. This way, the Italian believes he will arrive at the Tokyo Olympics in perfect form, as he looks to win gold medals on the track.

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Viviani has ridden Milan - San Remo six times since his debut in 2012, his best placed finish being ninth in 2017, as Michał Kwiatkowski (Ineos) beat Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) and Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck - Quick-Step).

After the March race, Viviani usually turns his attention to his home Grand Tour but the 30-year-old will skip the Giro this year, where he has previously won five stages, as he focuses on Tokyo 2020.

In order to arrive in Japan with the legs to compete for gold in the track events, Viviani will elect to ride what will be only his second Tour de France, having taken a stage at the 2019 edition to complete his set of Grand Tour stage victories.

Viviani will be sporting the European champion's jersey as his new Cofidis team step up to the WorldTour ranks next year, and the Italian can't wait to get back on his bike, telling La Gazzetta dello Sport: "After three weeks on holiday, I'm keen to start all over again."

Although he won't have Deceuninck - Quick-Step lead-out maestro Michael Mørkøv he has taken Fabio Sabatini with him to Cofidis, where Simone Consonni and Christophe Laporte will also offer support.

The sprinter believes his scheduling plan will offer him the best chance of winning, as previously his form coming off of Grand Tours has provided him with a number of victories.

After riding the Tour last year, his August saw him win the Prudential RideLondon-Surrey Classic, European road race championships and the EuroEyes Cyclassics Hamburg.

Similarly in 2018 after taking the points classification at the Giro d'Italia, Viviani went on to win four stages at Adriatica Ionica before winning the Italian road race championships and the EuroEyes Cyclassics Hamburg.

The chance of Olympic success comes around once every four years, and like Romain Bardet (Ag2r La Mondiale), Jakob Fuglsang (Astana) and Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida) will adjust their calendars to accommodate tilts at road race glory, Viviani will be hoping to set another gold medal beside his Omnium victory at Rio in 2016.

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Hi. I'm Cycling Weekly's Weekend Editor. I like writing offbeat features and eating too much bread when working out on the road at bike races.

Before joining Cycling Weekly I worked at The Tab and I've also written for Vice, Time Out, and worked freelance for The Telegraph (I know, but I needed the money at the time so let me live).

I also worked for ITV Cycling between 2011-2018 on their Tour de France and Vuelta a España coverage. Sometimes I'd be helping the producers make the programme and other times I'd be getting the lunches. Just in case you were wondering - Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen had the same ham sandwich every day, it was great.