The Welshman enters the race as the bookmakers’ favourite after some promising performances in Tirreno-Adriatico and the World Championships time trial.
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But Thomas, winner of the 2018 Tour de France, won’t be able to live up to his ambitions without some firepower behind him, as Ineos Grenadiers have picked some of their strongest riders to also race the Giro.
First up Thomas will have some huge power behind him as TT specialists Jonathan Castroviejo, Rohan Dennis and Filippo Ganna will all be there to guide their leader.
Dennis is also a strong climber and has been a general classification contender himself, so should be able to support Thomas late into mountain stages.
Meanwhile newly-crowned World TT champion Ganna has to be the favourite to take the maglia rosa in the Giro’s stage one time trial.
Then in the mountains Thomas will also benefit from the help of fellow Brit Tao Geoghegan Hart, a great climber and a promising talent himself.
To complete the team, Ineos will also field Jhonatan Narváez, Salvatore Puccio and British champion Ben Swift.
Thomas said: “We’re taking a great team and I’ve got total faith in the guys around me. Racing a Grand Tour with Swifty again will be a pleasure – we’ve been good mates since I was 12 and he’ll be our guide on the road. Tao and I have raced really well together before, most notably when I won the Dauphiné, and Filippo is obviously flying after the Worlds. Puccio has so much experience of the Giro, young Jonny Narváez is going really well and obviously everybody knows what Castro and Rohan can do.”
Ineos will be keen to prove themselves in the Giro after a disappointing Tour de France for the British WorldTour squad, which resulted in their leader Egan Bernal abandoning the race.
Team principal Sir Dave Brailsford said: “Geraint has worked hard to get to this point and it’s been energising for the whole Team to see how he’s responded to the challenge of leading us at the Giro. He’s a true champion and I know he’s up for this fight. We’ve thought a lot about the right riders to support Geraint in Italy. We think we have a group that is really well balanced and has the right mix of skills to get the job done.”
Ineos Grenadiers squad for the Giro d’Italia 2020
Tao Geoghegan Hart