The Israel¬†Cycling Academy team will return to the Giro d’Italia this May after its grand tour debut in last year’s race across Italy. Giro organizer RCS Sport confirmed that team and three other Pro Continental outfits as wildcard¬†invites for the 2019 race.

Italian teams Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec, Bardiani-CSF, and Nippo-Vini Fantini will take the start alongside Israel Cycling Academy when the three-week race begins May 11.

As is the case for every WorldTour race, all 18 WorldTour teams receive automatic invitations to race the Giro d’Italia.

Overall, the 2018 Giro was not very fruitful for the wildcard teams. None of the Pro Continental squads took stage wins, although Bardiani’s Enrico Barbin did hold the king of the mountains jersey for four days.

Israel Cycling Academy’s standout result in the 2018 Giro was Ruben Plaza’s second-place finish in stage 18 to Prato Nevoso.

RCS also organizes several other WorldTour races throughout the first half of the season, including Strade Bianche (March 9), Tirreno-Adriatico (March 13-19), and Milano-Sanremo (March 23).

The wildcard invitations for those three races blend in a few other teams from outside of Italy.

Strade Bianche 2019 wildcard teams

  • Neri Sottoli (I)
  • Nippo-Vini Fantini (I)
  • Vital Concept-B&B Hotels (F)

Tirreno-Adriatico 2019 wildcard teams

  • Bardiani-CSF (I)
  • Cofidis (F)
  • Gazprom-Rusvelo (Rus)
  • Israel Cycling Academy (Isr)
  • Neri Sottoli (I)

Milano-Sanremo 2019 wildcard teams

  • Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec (I)
  • Bardiani-CSF (I)
  • Cofidis (F)
  • Direct Energie (F)
  • Israel Cycling Academy (Isr)
  • Neri Sottoli (I)
  • Team Novo Nordisk (US)