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“We all know it doesn’t suit me. If Vegni put La Manie back in then maybe I’d think about it. If it remains the same course, there not much point in me riding it."

Photo: ANSA / MENTUCCIA

ASTANA QAZAQSTAN TEAM

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MILANO - SANREMO

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VINCENZO NIBALI

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09.03.2016 @ 18:19 Posted by Joseph Doherty

Speaking at the pre-race conference yesterday, Tour of Oman winner Vincenzo Nibali was keen to play down the fact that he is the favourite for another Trident come Tuesday.

 

“It’s true I’ve won Tirreno-Adriatico and that I feel at home on Italian roads but there are lots of other strong teams here who will be contenders and put up a fight,” he pointed out when he spoke in more details with a huddle of journalists present at the race.

 

Nibali says that all the riders are friends, but once the racing commences he is ready to go to war with all of them as he seeks his third overall title.

 

“We’re all friends and we all say hello to events like the pre-race press conference but then when the flag drops the racing starts. This year Movistar have got Valverde, Katusha has Rodriguez and the route definitely suits him. Esteban Chaves (Orica-GreenEdge) is a new entry in the lot of contenders but I noticed at the GP Larciano at the weekend that he stayed hidden despite looking really good.”

 

In today’s team time trial, he and his Astana squad were sixth, losing 15 seconds to van Garderen and BMC. He lost just six seconds to Pinot, four to Kreuziger and three to Frank and Pantano of IAM and gained on Valverde, Rodriguez and everyone else.

 

Turning away from Tirreno, he refused to answer questions on his future, the Giro or Olympics Road Race. however, he said that the route of next Sunday’s Milan-Sanremo probably means he wont race again at the event unless more climbs are added.

 

“We all know it doesn’t suit me. It’s suited to the sprinters and Classics rider but I’ve often ridden and tried to attack on the Poggio,” he argued. “If Vegni put La Manie back in then maybe I’d think about it. Maybe the team will decide I have to ride it and so I would but if it remains the same course, there not much point in me riding it. This year I’m also due to do a block of altitude training after Tirreno-Adriatico in preparation for the Giro d’Italia.” 

 

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