Team BikeExchange men line-up with a mixed squad providing different cards to play for this year’s edition of Strade Bianche, with the likes of last year’s seventh place finisher Brent Bookwalter, 22-year-old Australian Robert Stannard and the 2018 Vuelta a España champion Simon Yates heading the talented roster.
For the 15th edition, the peloton will cover 184km which includes 11 sectors accumulating to a total of 63km on gravel roads. Yates will make his season and racing debut on the white roads of Tuscany, looking to gain experiences as part of his preparation for this year’s Giro d’Italia, which features an important stage on gravel.
The WorldTour race is often known as ‘Europe’s most southern northern classic’ and with this, Team BikeExchange bring in powerhouses Jack Bauer and Chris Juul-Jensen with Nick Schultz and Barnabás Peák rounding out the mixed seven-rider team.
Team BikeExchange at Strade Bianche:
Jack Bauer (NZL)
Brent Bookwalter (USA)
Chris Juul-Jensen (DEN)
Barnabás Peák (HUN)
Nick Schultz (AUS)
Robert Stannard (AUS)
Simon Yates (GBR)
“I’ve already raced Strade two times and it’s a race I am really looking forward to and it’s definitely one of my best races of the season. This year, I’m going to Siena with the best form I’ve ever had for the race and my goal is to be with the best in the final and try to reach a good result in Piazza del Campo.
“For me, the weather we get is what it is and that doesn’t affect how I’m racing. It’s one of the most difficult races on the calendar and it will be more important how the race tactics will evolve after each gravel sector”.
Gene Bates – Sport Director:
“Strade it’s a fantastic race with a very, very strong field which will make the 2021 edition even more difficult. Weather conditions will play an important role and now the forecast is for rain and could make a very long and tough race.
“We aren’t going in with just one leader, we have a few guys so we have some options to play in the finale. It is such a hard race that you need good legs and a little luck in the last part going back to Siena. When we will get at that point, it will be quite obvious who has the best legs to be supported for the finish.
“Robert Stannard will be one rider to have the opportunity to go for a result and he has strong teammates to help him to be in the right position before the crucial points. At the end, Strade it’s not dissimilar to a Belgian Classic, getting ready for the different climbs and I think we need to have the same approach”
2021 Strade Bianche Race Details:
Saturday, 6th March: Siena-Siena, 184km
Photo courtesy of Getty Images