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by Mark Zalewski
January 17, 2017
In today’s CyclingTips Daily News Digest: Chloe Hosking jumps up to top step of podium in hilly stage 3 of Santos Women’s Tour; Tour Down Under GC battle looms at Paracombe: ‘One of the hardest stages the TDU has seen’; Fractured clavicle ends Toon Aerts’ season; Riders react to Italian World Cup course; Wout van Aert shifts focus to world championship questionable for Hoogerheide; Fight for Giro d’Italia wildcard invite to be fierce; Pinarello responds to claims of intellectual property infringement; Vanmarcke reveals spring Classics programme; Devriendt has knee surgery; Video: 2017 Cylance Pro Cycling; The Road Less Traveled – Why do you ride gravel?; Steven Ceballos Urbano de Manizales jump.
With four wild card invites up for grabs for this year’s Giro d’Italia, and many ProContinental teams vying for selection, including the four Italian teams, the battle for selection is coming to a head as the organisers, RCS Sport, are set to make their announcement this week. One spot is already spoken for as Bardiani-CSF has an automatic invitation for winning the Coppa Italia series in 2016, and there are reports that the Giro wants to give at least one spot to a non-Italian team.
Cyclingnews reports that Gazprom-Rusvelo will receive one of the invites. This leaves Nippo-Vini Fantini, Wilier-Selle Italia, and Androni Giocattoli fighting for the two remaining spots. Non-selection to the country’s biggest race could spell doom for an outfit that is dependent on sponsors getting visibility.
There are a lot of variables for RCS Sport to consider. Androni Giocattoli could get extra consideration as a gesture for non-selection in 2016. The new sponsorship of the last year’s Southeast team by two Italian brands, Wilier and Selle Italia, could also factor, though the head of cycling at RCS Sport Mauro Vegni went on record last year saying being Italian is no longer sufficient criteria.
As well, there is the possibility that the race might select up to two non-Italian teams. Reports of Poland vying to host the Giro’s start in the future could help the chances of the Polish CCC-Sprandi team.
This is the 100th anniversary of the race, making it even more of a spectacle in the country, and likely to increase viewership and importance for Italian teams to make the cut.
Click through to read more at Cyclingnews.