On Saturday, March 18, Team Dimension Data for Qhubeka lines up for the 108th edition of Milano – San Remo with a strong and versatile team aiming for another top result in the first monument of the season.
With its 291 km, Milano – San Remo is the longest one-day race on the calendar. The majority of the course is flat, but it’s usually still the short climbs towards the end that determine the outcome of the race. The last 60 km include five ascents, of which the last two are the most significant ones. Cipressa is 5.6 km long and has an average gradient of 4 %. From the top, there are only 12 km to the final climb of the race begins.
The 3.7 km towards the top of Poggio aren’t very steep. The average gradient is below 4 % but, since it’s the last chance to drop the sprinters, the pace is usually very high with numerous attempts to break away. The descent takes place on narrow roads and is very technical with several twists and turns. As the riders come down, only the final two kilometers are flat and after the last corner, it’s straight-out for the remaining 750 meters towards the finishing line on Via Roma.
Milano – San Remo holds a very special place for Team Dimension Data for Qhubeka after Gerald Ciolek’s amazing win in the team’s debut appearance in 2013. In addition to that victory, the team has also placed a rider in Top10 on two other occasions. This year, the goal is once again to fight for the top positions. Together with former winner of the race, Mark Cavendish, in-shape riders like Edvald Boasson Hagen, Steve Cummings and Scott Thwaites headline our roster for this Saturday.
Edvald Boasson Hagen:
“Milano – San Remo is a very long race and a lot can happen even before getting to the final. It’s important to save energy throughout the race because you need it all for Cipressa and Poggio. We haven’t finalized our plan yet but we have options for each possible outcome so I’m looking forward to a good race”.
Roger Hammond – sports director:
“We are really looking forward to Milano – San Remo. We bring a strong and versatile team and we have someone very talented ready for all the crucial parts of the race. I think we can be very optimistic but like any other World Tour team, we can’t afford to suffer any bad luck. As long as we can avoid that, we will be there and be one of the fighting teams”.
Lineup: Mark Cavendish, Edvald Boasson Hagen, Steve Cummings, Scott Thwaites, Kristian Sbaragli, Jay Thomson, Bernhard Eisel and Mark Renshaw.