Team Novo Nordisk head south to Tuscany for GP Industria & Artigianato di Larciano
05 March 2021
Atlanta, GA. – You wait all winter to get back to racing and then two come along in the space of five days! Team Novo Nordisk, the world’s first all diabetes professional cycling team continue with their Italian season openers on Sunday at the 52nd GP Industria & Artigianato di Larciano.
The one day semi-classic has been, in different guises a staple of the Italian racing season since the 1960’s and boasts some prestigious winners throughout its history. After being forced to cancel the event in 2020 due to Covid-19, both the race and Team Novo Nordisk return for 2021.
“It’s going to be good for us to get two very tough races in our legs in quick succession,” said Head Sports Director Massimo Podenzana. “Laigueglia was a hard race for us and Sunday is going to be very similar, David Lozano showed a lot of determination at Laigueglia and has come through the winter very well and we all need to be sharp on Sunday.”
“Larciano is another very hilly course, up and down for the second half of the race and our only objective for the race is to get in the breakaway. Yes, we want to get some solid racing in our legs ahead of Milan-San Remo, but we are here to get in the break and get our riders up the road. If we can achieve that goal and get a good result too, then we can go away very happy.”
The route, for the main part, follows the traditional parcours of hilly circuits around the Tuscan town of Larciano in the province of Pistoia and nearby Lamporecchio and the well-known San Baronto climb. Covering 200 kiloemeters in total and the four final 27 kilometer laps will be key to finishing well.
With just one change to the squad since Wednesday’s Trofeo Laigeuglia, Team Novo Nordisk will again be led by the experienced Spanish climber Lozano and French puncheur Charles Planet with young Australian Declan Irvine coming into the team alongside the former Hungarian national road champion Peter Kusztor.
Versatile Italian sprinter Andrea Peron will be on the look-out for breakaway opportunities on home roads with balance, power and support coming from Dutchman Brian Kamstra and Brit Sam Brand.
“It’s not my ideal terrain,” said Peron. “But I really like this race, we are here to see what our shape is like ahead of Milan – San Remo and the hilly circuits of Larciano are a real work out and after Laigueglia it’s going to be great to get some more hard racing the legs.”
“The last time we raced here I made it into the breakaway and it was a super tough day out, but very satisfying and that’s what we will be looking to achieve again, get into the break and show ourselves. It often comes down to a small selection at the finish here, climbers and puncheurs thrive on a course like this and I don’t think Sunday will be any different.”
Team Novo Nordisk for GP Industria & Artigianato di Larciano Sunday 7th March:
Sam Brand (GB, 29)
Declan Irvine (AUS, 21)
Brian Kamstra (NED, 27)
Peter Kusztor (HUN, 36)
David Lozano (ESP, 32)
Charles Planet (FR, 27)
Andrea Peron (IT, 32)