Former pro Manuel Quinziato outlines who he thinks the top riders will be in the 2018 season
Matteo Trentin (Mitchelton-Scott) and Tom Dumoulin (Sunweb) will win cycling’s big races in 2018 and beyond, says former professional rider and agent Manuel Quinziato.
Dumoulin could take over the space held by Chris Froome (Sky) as the star of Grand Tours over the next five years. The Dutchman won his first Grand Tour in 2017 in the Giro d’Italia.
“The last Grand Tour that he won was impressive, he was just amazing in the Giro. He was really close to already do that a few years ago in the Vuelta,” Quinziato told Cycling Weekly.
“He looks like the perfect modern GC rider. He’s strong in the TT, he can climb and he can handle his bike on those technical type roads that you find in the Classics, and at the start of the Tour.”
Dumoulin, 27, is returning to win the Giro d’Italia to defend his title in May, but is not ruling out a run at the Tour de France or Vuelta a España in 2018.
“I like him the most for the Grand Tours. I’d be happy to see him win four or five Grand Tours, it’d be good for cycling because he’s a classy guy,” Quinziato said.
“He’s six years younger than Vincenzo Nibali, and he has time. For sure, the next few years will be Tom’s years.
“We need to see what happens with Fabio Aru. Team UAE Emirates looks so much stronger for next year, and that will be a big motivation for Fabio. Fabio together with Tom are the GC riders that I like the most.”
Quinziato, after racing since 2002 and in 19 Grand Tours, works as an agent now after retiring. One of his clients includes Italian Matteo Trentin.
Trentin switched to lead Mitchelton-Scott, formerly Orica, after spending the last six years cutting his teeth at Quick-Step Floors.
In 2017 the 27-year-old won four Vuelta stages to add to his stage from the Giro and two from the Tour. He also won Paris-Tours twice and placed fourth behind Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) in the Worlds.
“In the Classics, experience plays such an important role so you’ll see Greg Van Avermaet and Peter Sagan still at the top.
“Greg will have a hard time to repeat his year, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he does something similar. Sagan will be hungry without getting a big result in the 2017 one-day races besides the Worlds, which was big,” continued Quinziato.
“The surprise will be Matteo Trentin. I’m pleased that he changed teams. The role he had in Quick-Step suited him, he grew much, but now it’s time for him to be a captain and try.
“Matteo progressed every year. The way he won the stage [10 at the Elpozo Alimentacion] in the Vuelta a España was impressive. Also in the World Championships, he finished fourth, and that’s not some random race.
“He won’t be the strongest, but that’s the thing in cycling, sometimes it’s the smartest. And Matteo is really smart, for me one of the smartest riders on the bike.
“The vision he has of the races is very impressive. Look for him to win in Ghent-Wevelgem, E3 Harelbeke or even the Tour of Flanders, those cobbled races.”