RACE PREVIEW – Matthews & Dunbar to headline Team Jayco AlUla at the 106th Giro d’Italia

Former two-time Giro d’Italia stage winner Michael Matthews and Irish climber Eddie Dunbar will lead a well-balanced Team Jayco AlUla squad at the 106thedition of the Giro d’Italia starting on Saturday, 6th May in Ortona on the Abruzzo coast.

The pair will headline the Australian outfit’s dual ambitions of taking stage victories and a strong general classification showing in the demanding three-week race.

Fresh from his recent top-10 finish overall at a hard edition of the Tour of Romandie, Dunbar is in high spirits for the Italian Grand Tour and the Irishman will have a strong support group around him, in the shape of experienced road captain Alessandro De Marchi, and the young and motivated Italian champion Filippo Zana

Australia’s Callum Scotson, who is quickly becoming one of the most valued support riders on the squad, will also be a key asset for Dunbar in the crucial third and final week, which is full of challenging alpine climbs set to determine the overall standings.

For the potential fast finishes and undulating stages more suited to Matthews, the former pink jersey wearer will have a mixed group around him with Austria’s Lukas Pöstlberger, also a former Giro stage winner and Maglia Rosa wearer, experienced Australian Michael Hepburn, who lines up for his eighth Giro assault, plus New Zealander Campbell Stewart, who is set to make his Grand Tour debut.

With no less than three individual time trials and 51,400 metres of altitude gain spread throughout the 3489 kilometre course, it is set to be another exciting, yet very demanding Grand Tour to shape the 2023 season.

Team Jayco-AlUla Giro d’Italia line-up:
Eddie Dunbar – 2nd appearance
Alessandro De Marchi – 7th appearance
Michael Hepburn – 8th appearance
Callum Scotson – 3rd appearance
Michael Matthews – 4th appearance
Lukas Pöstlberger – 2nd appearance
Campbell Stewart – Debut appearance 
Filippo Zana – 4th appearance

Brent Copeland – General Manager
“The Giro d’Italia is one of the most challenging but also beautiful races on the racing calendar and as always, we are extremely excited to participate in this year’s event. 

Together with the performance group we have built a balanced team which ranges from young to experienced riders and we are very much looking forward to seeing them battling it out for some exhilarating racing. 

We are forever grateful to all our sponsors and partners and particularly to our team owner Gerry Ryan, for the extraordinary support he continuously shows towards the team. We are looking forward to showcasing on the Italian roads over the next month.”

Michael Matthews
“Three years have already passed since the last time I raced the Giro and so I am very happy to return to a race that has given me a lot of satisfaction in the past, having won stages and worn the pink jersey back in 2014 and 2015. The Giro d’Italia is of course a huge race for us and it is always great lining up at such a prestigious event.

I am eager to get back to racing, I have had a bit of a rollercoaster of a season so far after a crash at the Tour of Flanders and having to recover from that and also being forced to stop for a while due to Covid. Now I am feeling good and like everything is back on track.

This year’s course is very demanding, but there will be some good opportunities for me for stage victories and we have a well-balanced and experienced team. It is really motivating to have a slightly different calendar this year and to return to this great Grand Tour.”

David McPartland – Sport Director
“As always, we are very motivated to head to Italy for the Giro d’Italia. We have had a lot of success at the Giro over the years and we are planning for more again in this year’s edition. It’s a course that has everything, lots of time trial kilometres, both flat & mountainous, then some flat road stages, many intermediate stages that can go either way, long hard mountain top finishes in the Dolomites and a spectacular last stage in Rome to wrap it up.
We are bringing a rounded squad spearheaded by Matthews who will be supported by experienced riders. The squad is completed by the two young riders in Stewart and Zana and finally by Dunbar who will be at the Giro for the mountain stages and our general classification ambitions.

“La corsa rosa” is one of the most spectacular and hardest races that exists on the WorldTour calendar, and we are ready to give it our everything and bring home some success.”