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Giro d’Italia boss steamed by Italian snub

Giro boss Mauro Vegni expresses dismay that many of Italy's top stars are steering clear of the Giro d'Italia in 2022.

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Mauro Vegni isn’t pleased about what he’s hearing about racing plans in 2022 that sees many of Italy’s top stars steering clear of the Giro d’Italia.

Vincenzo Nibali is a sure bet, but Filippo Ganna, Damiano Caruso, and Sonny Colbrelli have all indicated that they will not race the Giro in 2022.

Giro director Vegni isn’t happy.

“I don’t find any logic in the absence of Caruso,” Vegni told Corriere della Serra. “It’s a disgrace above all for a rider who discovered leadership with us and who could do so again this year.”

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Bahrain-Victorious sketched out its grand tour plans for its top stars in 2022, and neither Caruso, who was second to Egan Bernal, nor Sonny Colbrelli, who won Paris-Roubaix, will be at the start line in Hungary. The team is expected to line up at the Giro with Mikel Landa instead.

Ineos Grenadiers also confirmed that Ganna, an Olympic gold medalist and big winner at the Giro in the past two seasons, will also skip the Giro.

All three are targeting the Tour de France instead.

Vegni said he understands Ganna’s decision to skip the Giro, but questioned Colbrelli.

“I understand the choice of Ineos, because Ganna honored our race and it is right that he tries other paths,” Vegni said. “I understand less that of Bahrain for Colbrelli. Especially if you do not aim for the final victory, the Giro and the Tour can coexist.”

Colbrelli, who hasn’t raced the Giro since 2016, has never won a grand tour stage. For 2022, the breakout Italian star will race a packed spring classics calendar before targeting the Tour.

Nibali is expected to put the Giro at the center of his season in his return to Astana-Qazaqstan.

Other top GC riders expected to start include Richie Porte and Richard Carapaz (Ineos Grenadiers), Simon Yates (BikeExchange-Jayco), Tom Dumoulin (Jumbo-Visma), and perhaps Nairo Quintana (Arkea-Samsic).

Defending champion Egan Bernal said he’ll likely race the Tour de France in 2022.

And Tadej Pogačar? Not likely in 2022, but he’s also hinted he wants to race the Giro someday.

Vegni also has his mind made up on that.

“I still contend that a champion like Pogačar could show his talent more by winning Giro and Tour in the same year than by collecting successes in France.”

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