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Oscar Freire is the latest big international star to commit to racing the 2010 Giro d’Italia, a race the three-time world champion has never taken on before.
Despite racking up stage wins at the Tour de France and Vuelta a España, Rabobank’s three-time world champion has never lined up at the Giro. Freire will change that when he makes his inaugural appearance in the corsa rosa May 18 in Amsterdam.
“As the Giro starts in Holland, the team is interested that I race it,” Freire told Bici Ciclismo. “I think the Giro fits well to my characteristics. The finishes are difficult and more complicated to control by the teams, so that way I can have more opportunities. It would be great to win a stage.”
Freire will start his season at the Mallorca Challenge, followed by the Ruta del Sol ahead of the spring classics. He’ll race Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne, Tirreno-Adriatico and Milan-San Remo before Harelbeke, Ghent-Wevelgem and then the Vuelta al País Vasco.
Then it’s off to the Giro and then the Tour de France. He will skip the Vuelta but will race the road world championships in Australia, where he’s hoping to win a record fourth rainbow jersey.
“I will do a different preparation for the worlds. Other years I didn’t race the Vuelta and I was good. There’s no problem in that,” he said. “I’d like to do well in practically all of those races because they’re important.”
Other big names who’ve committed to the Giro include reigning world champion Cadel Evans (BMC), Carlos Sastre (Cervélo) and Bradley Wiggins (Sky).
The Giro begins May 18 in Amsterdam.