January 31/14 11:55 am - Cannondale to Race Sun Tour, Picks Boivin as Sprint Leader
Posted by Editoress on 01/31/14
Cannondale Pro Cycling will join fellow WorldTour teams Orica-GreenEDGE and Garmin Sharp at the Jayco Herald Sun Tour next week.
The Italian outfit, coming off a season debut at the Tour Down Under, has identified Canadian speedster Guillaume Boivin as their best chance to deliver the teams' first success of the 2014 season.
But within the larger picture, an intriguing battle presents itself - that of two of the world's rising stars in Matej Mohoric and Caleb Ewan (Jayco U23 National Team).
Mohoric is the youngest rider on the Cannondale team and the reigning world Under-23 road race champion. Twelve months earlier he slipped away from Ewan in the closing stages of the 2012 world Junior championship forcing the New South Welshman to settle for the silver medal.
Whilst Ewan, who will ride for the Jayco U23 National Team at the Jayco Herald Sun Tour, elected to have a final year on the under-23 circuit before joining Orica-GreenEDGE for the end of the season, Mohoric is amid his debut season at the world's highest level on what will be a steep learn curb for the Slovenian.
“My goals for this season are not so much about results. I am very young and still need time to develop myself. So this year should be more about the learning and gaining experience,” Mohoric said.
“This race means a strong start of the season, so I will return back to Europe with some racing kilometres in my legs. That should make racing a bit easier.”
At 24-years-old, Boivin is another developing rider. The Canadian returns to Victoria with fond memories, having tied for the bronze medal at the Under-23 world championships in Geelong in 2010.
Whilst the team will let the racing decide their overall leader, there is no doubting he will be the man for any final bunch sprints.
"We can do a good general classification and we will try to win a stage with our sprinter Guillaume Boivin," team manager Biagio Conte said.
"We haven't the leader, yes for the sprint, but the road and the race will tell who will be the (general classification) leader."
Boivin and Mohoric are joined by 2013 New Zealand championship silver medallist George Bennett, 2011 Giro della Lunigiana champion Alberto Bettiol and 2011 Austrian road race champion Matthias Krizek.
Whilst it will be the majority of the team's first start at Australia's oldest stage race, their sole local ride Cameron Wurf will provide some valuable local knowledge.
"This will be my fourth Herald Sun Tour so and I have always loved coming back to race in and around Melbourne," Wurf said.
"It's a race where you need to be alert as with the varying terrain and weather, the race situation can change in the blink of an eye so you don't want to be caught out!"