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“Our first goal for the Giro d’Italia is to go for a stage [win] and there are plenty of early opportunities for this with the flat stages,” Kittel said in a press release from the team.

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ALBERT TIMMER

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BERT DE BACKER

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GEORG PREIDLER

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GIRO D'ITALIA

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JOHANNES FRÖHLINGER

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LUKA MEZGEC

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MARCEL KITTEL

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NIKIAS ARNDT

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SIMON GESCHKE

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TEAM SUNWEB

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TOBIAS LUDVIGSSON

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TOM STAMSNIJDER

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TOM VEELERS

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27.03.2014 @ 13:12 Posted by Aleksandra Górska

Everything seems set for the fastest men in the professional peloton to lock their horns again in the 2014 edition of the Giro d’Italia, as Giant-Shimano have announced their 12-riders long list for the Italian grand tour and have confirmed that Marcel Kittel will target sprints in the event.

 

Kittel impressively kicked off his 2014 season with a dominant performance in the Dubai Tour inaugural edition, where he has won the points classification and three out of four stages in the process, but his most recent appearance in Tirreno-Adriatico certainly left him disappointed.

 

The 25-year old German has been stricken by a bad luck throughout the whole Italian stage race and managed to steal the spotlight only while spectacularly throwing his beloved bike on the tarmac after he crashed on the first stage’s last kilometers.

 

Kittel became broadly recognized and, by some, regarded as the peloton’s most powerful sprinter after his triumphal campaign in the last Tour de France, emphasized by the highly coveted victory on the Champs-Elysees and three other stage wins taken in the event.

 

This year, the 25-year old Giant-Shimano rider again set the Tour de France as his main target, hotly willing to put the maillot jaune on his athletic shoulders when its first stage comes to an end in Harrogate. However, Kittel aims to add some Giro d’Italia stage wins to his increasingly impressive palmares before the 101st edition of French grand tour kicks off in July.

 

“Our first goal for the Giro d’Italia is to go for a stage [win] and there are plenty of early opportunities for this with the flat stages,” Kittel said in a press release from the team.

 

“I’ve had a good start this season and winning in Dubai with all the best sprinters was good for the confidence. I felt strong at the beginning of Tirreno, on Italian ground, so I’m now looking forward to getting off to a good start in one of the biggest races on the cycling calendar.”

 

The final decision on the eight other riders to form the Giant-Shimano roster for the Giro d’Italia will be made shortly before the Italian event kicks off in May.

 

The current long-list consists of Marcel Kittel, Nikias Arndt, Bert De Backer, Johannes Fröhlinger, Simon Geschke, Tobias Ludvigsson, Luka Mezgec, Tom Peterson, Georg Preidler, Tom Stamsnijder, Albert Timmer and Tom Veelers.

 

Kittel is expected to lock horns with Mark Cavendish (Omega Pharma-Quick Step) in the Italian grand tour before their final showdown in July, while is has been already announced that the third of main contenders to take the spoils in bunch sprints – Andre Greipel (Lotto-Belisol) will skip the event to prepare exclusively for the Tour de France.

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