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Former Giro stage winner and former Paris-Tours champion are set to support Sagan in the classics

Photo: Sirotti








30.10.2013 @ 13:09 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Cannondale has strengthened the team that is set to support Peter Sagan in the classics. According to Gazzetta dello Sport, Dwars door Vlaanderen winner Oscar Gatto will leave Vini Fantini to join the Italian team while former Paris-Tours champion Marco Marcato has signed with the squad following the demise of Vacansoleil.


The Cannondale team has often been criticized for not providing Peter Sagan with sufficient support in the classics. According to Gazzetta dello Sport, the team has now reacted by signing two strong one-day riders to support their Slovakian captain.


Oscar Gatto will leave the Vini Fantini team at the end of the season to join Cannondale. Being a fast finisher and a strong classics rider, he started his career with Gerolsteiner in 2007 and has been with Luca Scinto's team since 2009.


Gatto's major breakthrough came at the 2001 Giro d'Italia where he attacked with Alberto Contador on a small hill near the finish on the stage to Tropea and beat the eventual overall winner to take a beautiful stage win. This year he showed his potential in the cobbled classics when he won the Dwars door Vlaanderen and he has taken several wins in Italian one-day races during the last four years.


Marco Marcato has long been rumoured to be joining Cannondale following the demise of his Vacansoleil team. Like Gatto, the Italian is a strong classics rider and a fast finisher who joined Vacansoleil's predecessor Cycle Collstrop in 2008 after three years on different Italian teams.


Already in his first year, he showed his potential when he finished 4th in the Tour de Wallonie and one year later he was 3rd in the Tour of Luxembourg. In 2010 he once again excelled in Wallonie where he was 2nd but his major breakthrough came in 2011 when he finished 3rd in the WorldTour race Tour de Pologne and won his first race in the Tour de Vendee.


He got close to his first classics win when he was beaten by Greg Van Avermaet in a two-man sprint in Paris-Tours but made up for the defeat one year later when he won the French one-day race. This year has been a bad one for Marcato who has been hampered by illness and failed to produce any major results.


Gatto and Marcato are Cannondale's 5th and 6th signings for the 2014 season. Earlier this year, they signed neo-pros Matej Mohoric, Alberto Bettiol, Davide Formolo and Davide Villella.



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