Big names line up for Lombardia — Nibali, Martin return

Il Lombardia, the final monument classic of the season, welcomes three former champions to the race for 2017.

Some big names are not done racing yet, and they’re heading to Italy to close out the season with a bang at the Giro di Lombardia.

Organizers confirmed that the past three winners will be lining up for the season’s final monument on October 7 in northern Italy’s lake district.

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Defending champion Esteban Chaves (Orica-Scott) will not race due to a fractured shoulder blade. However, 2015 winner Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida) will join 2014 winner Daniel Martin (Quick-Step) for the 111th edition of Italian fall classic.

The 247km route starts in Bergamo and ends in Como. It is one of the most daunting of the season. With 4,000 vertical meters and a technical finale, Lombardia is a fitting end to a long season of European WorldTour racing.

Racing organizers released a preliminary start list that includes a deep roster for the season’s final monument.

A number of other big names are likely to start: Rigoberto Urán (Cannondale-Drapac), Nairo Quintana (Movistar), Fabio Aru (Astana), Mikel Landa and Diego Rosa (Team Sky), Nairo Quintana (Movistar), Ilnur Zakarin (Katusha), Philippe Gilbert and Julian Alaphilippe (Quick-Step), Thibaut Pinot (FDJ), and recently crowned world time trial champion Tom Dumoulin and Warren Barguil (Sunweb).

The 25-team rosters (18 WorldTour and seven Professional Continental) will be finalized next week ahead of the race.