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“I’m glad to know there’ll be strong teams like Lotto-Soudal and Lampre-Merida with top sprinters in contention in Turkey. Therefore, we’ll get some help to keep the peloton together and gear up for some great bunch...

Photo: Jérémy-Günther-Heinz Jähnick




23.04.2016 @ 00:38 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

One of the sprinters to watch at the 52nd Presidential Tour of Turkey (April 24-May 1st) competing with the likes of André Greipel and Sacha Modolo will be Jakub Mareczko from the Italian outfit Southeast.


The 21-year-old from Brescia, born in Jaroslaw, Poland, before his mother relocated to Italy, is one of the most promising sprinters in the world. He’ll celebrate his 22nd birthday on the penultimate stage of the TUR in Marmaris, a wonderful holiday destination that usually inspires fast men. Over the past four years, Mark Cavendish, Mark Renshaw and André Greipel (twice) have twice taken the top price there in front of Mustapha Kemal’s iconic statue.



Mareczko is eligible for the Under-23 World Championship at Doha, Qatar, in mid-October - a race that will suit the sprinters. He’s also set to take part in his first Giro d’Italia next month, following the path of Andrea Guardini, who also rode his first Grand Tour in his second pro year (2012), with the same team, now called Southeast. Guardini ended the race with a win in Stage 18. The squad managed by Angelo Citracca has taken part in every Presidential Tour of Turkey since their debut in 2009. They won the overall classification with Giovanni Visconti in 2010.


They line up in Istanbul with two sprinters this year, Mareczko’s right hand man being Manuel Belletti who was also a stage winner in Marmaris back in 2011. They’re likely to switch roles, depending on Mareczko’s return to form. “Kuba” – his nickname – has recently been sidelined by sickness.


“I’ve spent a week at home under antibiotics because of a throat and tonsil inflammation”, Mareczko explained. “I’m back on the bike, looking for good condition again. My ambitions for the Tour of Turkey will develop according to my condition during the race.”



“Unfortunately, last year's TUR didn’t go as well as I wanted, although I started with a top 10 finish in stage 1”, he continued. He was forced to pull out on the way to… Marmaris – the place to be this year.


“I’m glad to know there’ll be strong teams like Lotto-Soudal and Lampre-Merida with top sprinters in contention in Turkey”, Mareczko added. “Therefore, we’ll get some help to keep the peloton together and gear up for some great bunch sprints.”


Mareczko had a fabulous end of season last year with seven stages wins and the overall classification at the UCI 2.1 Tour of Taihu Lake in China. After that confidence boost, he started 2016 on a high note, with a stage win at the Tour of San Luis in Argentina in January. He’s achieving one victory per month so far this year,, with stage 6 of Le Tour de Langkawi in Malaysia in February and stage 3 of Coppi&Bartali Week in Italy in March. The TUR welcomes him back in April…



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