Bahrain Victorious looks forward to returning to the first Classic Monument of the season, the Milano-Sanremo, where Matej Mohorič took a legendary victory with an impressive descent last year.
The defending champion will lead a lineup that best suits the different scenarios that unfold at this race, especially in the finale, with the undulating course featuring the sequence of the Capi (Mele, Cervo and Berta), the Cipressa and the Poggio, followed by a tricky downhill towards the picturesque town on the coast of Liguria, where the traditional flat finish in Via Roma awaits the riders.
The start has been moved from the centre of Milan to a nearby town, Abbiategrasso, with a change in the first 30km that won’t affect the soul of this 294km length Monumental race, whose 114th edition will take place on Saturday 18th March.
“Milan-Sanremo has always been the most unpredictable race and the most difficult to win.”
TBV Sports Director Franco Pellizotti confirms, “We arrive as the winner of the last edition; therefore, the expectations are high. But every year, it’s a different story in this race, and everybody now knows what Matej is capable of. Although he feels even better than in 2022, it’s not taken for granted that he can repeat what he did to win the Sanremo, and with the same outcome. He’s a clever rider, and he does not necessarily have to wait for the Poggio descent to try to win again. I believe that his skills can let him win this Monument in different ways.”
“I am aware that confirming the success will be difficult, but yes, Sanremo is open to various outcomes, and I think I can still have a chance to win it again,” says the 2022 winner Matej Mohorič. “Probably, I will be more controlled by the rivals, but I guess I still have good cards in my pocket”.
The unpredictability makes La Classicissima fascinating and challenging to plan the strategies. Therefore, Bahrain Victorious will have several cards besides Mohorič, according to how the race unfolds. As Pellizotti explains: “We have a solid squad, including fast wheels and climbers. Some showed good shape at the stage races they participated in recently. I’m talking about a rider like Nikias Arndt can be our jolly, and the experienced Andrea Pasqualon as a sprinter, while Jonathan Milan suffered a bit at Paris-Nice, where he was forced to abandon. Therefore we will see how he will feel on Saturday to understand which kind of race to expect from him. He will surely support the team at best, as always, like Fred Wright, both appearing at the start for the second time. Then our lineup is made strong by two key riders that can try a late attack: Damiano Caruso and Pello Bilbao. Damiano is a race veteran, while Pello is debuting in this Monument. I’m curious and thrilled to see him in action”.