With only two weeks until the start of the Giro d’Italia, it’s only customary that rumours emerge concerning the make-up of the squads set to support the contenders in the race for the maglia rosa.
Egan Bernal will be looking to add to his Tour de France yellow jersey with victory over three weeks in Italy, and Italian newspaper La Gazzetta dello Sport has the seven names it believes are heading to the first Grand Tour of the season for Ineos Grenadiers.
Three Colombians, including Bernal, are listed in the eight-man squad, as Ivan Sosa prepares for his second Giro, his debut Grand Tour in 2019 before riding the Vuelta last year, while Dani Martínez will be riding his first three-week stage race for the British squad, having signed from EF ahead of the 2021 season.
Three of the four Italians on Ineos’ books will ride their home Grand Tour, as Filippo Ganna is slated to be returning for his second Giro appearance, having won four stages at his debut Grand Tour in 2020, the 2021 edition book-ended with time trials that the world champion would be hoping to win.
Gianni Moscon and Salvatore Puccio are supposedly set to play domestique for Bernal, as will Jonathan Castroviejo and the talented young Russian Pavel Sivakov, who finished ninth overall at the 2019 Giro.
Defending champion Tao Geoghegan Hart will ride this summer’s Tour de France in lieu of attempting to retain his title, but runner-up Jai Hindley will be on the start line in Turin alongside new team-mate Romain Bardet.
Simon Yates (BikeExchange) is another contender for the overall, while Bernal will likely also face stiff competition from the likes of Marc Soler (Movistar), Emanuel Buchmann (Bora-Hansgrohe), Hugh Carthy (EF-Nippo), Aleksandr Vlasov (Astana) and Mikel Landa (Bahrain-McLaren).
One rider who will no longer be on the start line is Thibaut Pinot, Eurosport reporting the French climber is still suffering from back pain, despite undergoing surgery, which dogged his 2020 season.