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Team ready for WorldTour debut outside Spain.

Photo: Rafa Gómez / Ciclismo a Fondo




07.03.2016 @ 11:53 Posted by Jesper Ralbjerg

When the Tirreno-Adriatico stage race kicks off this Wednesday, Caja Rural - Seguros RGA will be making its WorldTour debut outside the borders of Spain. The team management chose the following eight riders for the demanding Italian WorldTour stage race:


José Gonçalves, Ángel Madrazo, Pello Bilbao, Ricardo Vilela, Lluis Mas, Jaime Rosón, Domingos Gonçalves and Sergio Pardilla who showed good legs last Sunday when the Spaniard finished ninth in GP Industria & Artigianato. For Madrazo, this is his first race after his crash last month.


Team manager Juanma Hernández explained the importance of the team’s Italian outing, “Lining up in Tirreno-Adriatico for the first time is a very important step for the team. Until now, we have only done WorldTour stage races in Spain. Therefore, we are very grateful that RCS has given us this opportunity”.


Tirreno-Adriatico starts this Wednesday with a flat team time trial and finishes next Tuesday with a short individual time trial. The remaining five stages are all very undulating with numerous difficult climbs to overcome, which suit the team’s strong roster very well. The hilly finish on stage 2 serves as the first good chance for the Caja Rural - Seguros RGA riders to show off the team colours.


Sports director Eugenio Goikoetxea, “We go to this race with all the motivation in the world. This is our first participation in Tirreno-Adriatico and we want to do a great race in order to honour the confidence the race organizers showed us by inviting the team”.


The queen stage of the race comes on day five with a mountain top finish on Monte San Vicino. This 13 km long ascent has an average gradient of 6.6 per cent and multiple parts of double digits gradients. After a recent altitude training camp in Sierra Nevada, José Gonçalves is very eager to confirm the qualities he showed in the second part of last year’s season.


The Portuguese explains, “I know that the field here is strong but I’m very motivated and I think the race suits me well. I hope my legs will respond the way I wish for so that I can be up there every day”.



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