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The Dutch super-team confirmed its “Giro Eight” ahead of Friday’s start in Hungary, and while the likes of Wout van Aert, Sepp Kuss, and Primož Roglič are keeping their collective powder dry for the Tour de France, the team packs some firepower.
Dumoulin returns to the Giro for his first grand tour since abandoning the 2020 Vuelta a España and his surprise racing stop at the beginning of 2021. The Dutch superstar since returned to earn a silver medal at the Tokyo Olympics in the time trial, but he’s been struggling to match the relentless pacing in WorldTour stage racing.
So far in 2022, he was gapped in the climbing stages at the UAE Tour and did not finish the Volta a Catalunya. Even Dumoulin admits his GC chances are uncertain at best.
“I will not know whether it will be enough or not. We will see all of this in the first week of the Giro,” Dumoulin told AD last month.
“It makes little sense to elaborate on the Giro. I’ve shown crazy things before with a little lack of preparation,” he said. “I’m going to do the work that’s needed, and then I’m not concerned with whether it’s going to be enough or if I can join the GC battle. We will see that in the first week of the Giro.”
- Jumbo-Visma to share leadership duties at Giro
- Dumoulin abandons Volta a Catalunya
- Jumbo-Visma star searching for Giro legs
Dumoulin is putting the Giro at the center of his ambitions in 2022, and he said his goals remain the same despite an uneven spring so far this season.
“Even if I don’t have my best legs at the moment, I will stick to the objectives defined,” he said. “That’s to do two very good time trials and aim for the general classification.”
Dumoulin won the 2017 Giro, and finished second in 2018 in the epic showdown versus Chris Froome. He later finished second to Geraint Thomas at that year’s Tour de France.
In what’s a contract season for the Dutchman, Dumoulin will want to get something out of the Giro even if he’s not quite up to challenging for the pink jersey.
Behind him, Foss will have an open road in his third career Giro start.
The 2019 Tour de l’Avenir winner punched into the top-10 with ninth overall, and will have the freedom to ride his own race. At 24, Foss continues to make steady progress, even if the start of the 2022 season is a bit uneven. He opened the season with a promising sixth at the Volta ao Algarve, but pulled out of Coppi e Bartali in March, and hasn’t raced since.
4 days until the Grande Partenza🥰
Our team for the Giro d’Italia⤵️ pic.twitter.com/ZVGQMy3U6r
— Team Jumbo-Visma cycling (@JumboVismaRoad) May 2, 2022
Dutch climber Sam Oomen will be another important rider for the Giro, and the team is hopeful he can be a factor in the deep mountains of the Giro’s third week. The 26-year-old can climb with the best when he’s in top form.
The team is riding into the Giro with Dumoulin, Foss, and Oomen all protected, and then the squad will see who’s still riding strong going into the decisive third week.
“Together with Foss and Oomen, he will be one of the GC guys for the team. He’s in Tenerife with the team and he’s going well. I’m actually pretty confident that he will go well at the Giro,” team director Merijn Zeeman told VeloNews at the Tour de Romandie.
“In Holland, everyone expects great things from [Dumoulin] but it’s his first grand tour again and to go for GC,” he said. “I’m excited and curious to see what he can do. It’s also an unknown to us how he will do over three weeks. He’s a special one, that’s clear of course. And that makes it all exciting to see.”
The rest of the team is packed with stage-hunters and support riders. With the Giro’s first two weeks offering plenty of chances for breakaways and sprints, the team will be hopeful for something early to take a bit of pressure off the final week.
Jos van Emden, a winner of the final time trial in 2017, will be grinding it out to make it to the closing day TT in Verona, while Italian rider Edoardo Affini will be trying his luck in reduced bunch sprints.
Jumbo-Visma for the 2022 Giro d’Italia
Jos van Emden