Team BikeExchange continue their Italian race programme as they return to the 36th edition of the Settimana Internazionale Coppi e Bartali.
The team will be aiming to regain the title won by Lucas Hamilton two season ago as they head into the race with a squad full of climbing talent. Australian Nick Schultz will look to build on his early season form, while Czech Tour winner Damien Howson will line-up for his first European race of the season.
Australian champion Cameron Meyer will also make his 2021 debut, while Michael Hepburn and Andrey Zeits will add valuable experience alongside neo-pro Kevin Colleoni.
The race takes in six stage in five days, with the now traditional two-part opening day of racing featuring the crucial team time trial. An uphill finish follow on day two, with a number of hilly stage to follow that can end either in a bunch sprint or in a select group.
Team BikeExchange at 2021 Settimana Internazionale Coppi e Bartali:
Kevin Colleoni (ITA)
Michael Hepburn (AUS)
Damien Howson (AUS)
Cameron Meyer (AUS)
Nick Schultz (AUS)
Andrey Zeits (KAZ)
“I’m really looking forward for Coppi Bartali; I just had two weeks of altitude training in Andorra with the team. The course this year looks really hard and I have done this once before in 2019 which was very successful for the team winning the GC and I was 3rd overall.
“I hope we can also achieve good results in this year’s edition. We will try to have a good start with the TTT and after that, me and the other climbers will try to have an active part in the race for the GC and winning some stages.”
Gene Bates (Sport Director):
“We are going to the Settimana Internazionale to try to win. We will go after stages and chase the General Classification also. We will have a very good team for the TTT and that will be the base to set up the week trying to take as much time as possible over our rivals. We also very good climbers here with Nick Schultz who has showed great form, Damien Howson who will do his debut in Europe, young Kevin Colleoni who is a good climber and not forgetting Andrej Zeits as well.
“If I could choose a stage, I will go for the TTT, that is always a special victory. I think that also the other stages will be very open, and anything can happen. That’s why we need to be prepare being aggressive and take advantage of the situations.
This year there is a new stage entirely in San Marino and I think it’s a very exciting route and it will be very important to define the overall”
2021 Settimana Internazionale Coppi e Bartali Race Details:
Tuesday, 23 Mar: Split Stage 1 Gatteo – Gatteo, 97,8 km
Tuesday, 23 Mar: Split Stage 1 Gatteo – Gatteo (TTT), 14 km.
Wednesday, 24 Mar: Stage 2 Riccione – Sogliano al Rubicone, 163 km
Thursday, 25 Mar: Stage 3 Riccione – Riccione, 145 km
Friday, 26 Mar: Stage 4 San Marino – San Marino, 154 km
Saturday 27 Mar: Stage 5 Forlì – Forlì, 166 km