Starting this Friday, May 5 six American riders and two Canadians from five different teams will be on the start line for the grande partenza of the 100th running of the Giro d’Italia in Alghero, Sardinia.
For the BMC Racing Team, Tejay van Garderen will co-lead with Australian Rohan Dennis after finishing strong at the Tour de Romandie last week with a third in the final time trial, catapulting him into sixth overall by day’s end.
Joey Rosskopf finished last year’s Giro in 85th and is coming off good climbing form that nabbed him fifth in the mountains classification at last week’s Tour de Yorkshire.
Van Garderen will look to him for support in the mountains during the final week of the race if he’s still in contention.
The Cannondale-Drapac squad hopes to build off a strong spring Classics campaign in the season’s first Grand Tour. They’re sending the young Joe Dombrowski and Alex Howes, competing in their second and first Giro’s respectively.
Dombrowski finished 34th in the general classification, 12th in the mountains jersey and fifth in the young riders competition as well as taking third on the penultimate, mountainous day into Sant’Anna di Vinadio in the 2016 edition.
The team is heading into the race without a designated leader, so this could be a great opportunity for Dombrowski to take the reins.
Canadian Michael Woods (Cannondale-Drapac) has had a very successful season thus far and will being ride in his first Grand Tour, likely with the opportunity to go for key stage wins.
Peter Stetina (Trek-Segafredo) will be riding in his fourth Giro since 2011. He finished 21st in the general classification that year and has slipped into a domestique role for the Dutch rider Bauke Mollema, who has his eyes set on an elusive Grand Tour podium in only his second Giro appearance.
The German registered Team Sunweb features American Chad Haga, starting his third consecutive Giro and riding in support of pink jersey hopeful Tom Dumoulin.
Canadian veteran Svein Tuft (Orica-Scott), riding in his sixth Giro, will assist the young sprinter Caleb Ewan seeking stage wins in the first week as well as help Adam Yates aim for the white jersey and top-10 in the general classification during the final, mountainous stages heading into Milan.