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On the heels a dominant sprinting performance at the Tour of Turkey last week, Team Rabobank heads into Saturday’s Giro d’Italia with that leadout squad intact — and a wealth of confidence.
According to a team press release, the same leadout team that scored three times in the Tour of Turkey will start in Denmark, where the Giro begins this year. And that train will again primarily pull for Theo Bos, who won the first and last stages in Turkey.
Mark Renshaw, who also nailed one win there, will be Bos’ final leadout man, but will also be free to fly depending on the day. And as Mark Cavendish’s (Sky) key leadout man in years past, he’s no stranger to Giro success.
With these two showing great form, Rabobank is well poised to hit its goal in the Italian tour: “Our main goal for this Giro is a stage win,” sports director Jan Boven said, also suggesting the team’s best shot is in the first week.
“With this line-up, we have to go for stage,” he continued. “We’ve seen it in Turkey — Renshaw is the best man in the leadout for Theo Bos, but he can win sprints himself as well.”
After his two stage wins in Turkey — especially in the final stage — Bos, who will make his Giro debut, heads to Denmark confident. “Getting to finish the race with a stage win is just fantastic. The last impression always stays with you the most and for the longest time.”
As in Turkey, the rest of the leadout team in the Giro will consist of Graeme Brown, Tom Leezer and Dennis van Winden. They’ll get extra help from Grisha Niermann, as well as Stef Clement, who just finished the Tour de Romandie in sixteenth place.
But Rabobank won’t rest on its sprinting laurels. Juan Manuel Garate and Tom-Jelte Slagter are the two riders assigned with a free role in the Giro team. “They are our attackers,” said Boven. “With the help of Garate, Slagter needs to discover how far his reach is. Both of them will have to pick their days and strike when they can.”