Tirreno-Adriatico 2018, the pretenders’ speeches at the press conference

Peter Sagan (Bora-hansgrohe)
“It will certainly be a different Tirreno-Adriatico. In the past, I used to race more before this race, including in Qatar, Oman or Argentina and the opening weekend in Belgium. My schedule has changed, though not too much. This race is the real start of my season. I won the points ranking four times [within the last four years] and I would like to win one more of these shirts. If I will achieve this victory it would be an excellent way to approach Milan-Sanremo, to which I care a lot.”

Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain Merida)
“My situation on the eve of the Tirreno-Adriatico: my condition is always a question mark. I suffered of a problem at the beginning of the season which has delayed my preparation. I do not have great ambitions: we will see day by day what I can do. Our team is doing well. We are working well and have a good group, even with Domenico Pozzovivo, who is targeting the CG.”

Chris Froome (Team Sky)
“It has been a while since I last raced in Italy (World Championships in Florence, 2013). Of course, in the past I scheduled my season differently because the Tour de France was my main goal. I have not got back to the Tirreno-Adriatico since I finished in second in the GC behind Vincenzo Nibali five years ago but I started as a professional in Italy with Barloworld. Italy has a deep connection with cycling and has also a great tradtion. You can see how much passion is put into this race, the Giro and into cycling in general. It’s great to come back here. We have a great line-up for the Tirreno-Adriatico and we are here to target the General Classification. We’ll give it our best in the team time trial and we will designate the roles inside the team and depending on the results of the first stage.”

Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb)
“I’m not in my best shape. I’ve already came down with flu before the Strade Bianche and racing under the rain with windy conditions definitely did not improve my condition. I hope to get ready for the uphill finish. The Tirreno-Adriatico is one of my favorite spring races. I’m always happy to come back. Last year I had done quite well. We will evaluate in the next few days what I am able to achieve in this edition.”

Fabio Aru (UAE Team Emitates)
“The Tirreno-Adriatico is an important race with regard to the Giro. Last year I raced here for the first time but unfortunately it did not go as I expected. I abandoned due to health problems. Together with the team we always wanted to come back. I’m happy to be here. Last week I went to train in Sicily, it’s a place I do like because I felt at home. It is important to train on Mount Etna also because it will be in next Giro’s route.”

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