Bahrain Merida Pro Cycling Team | Strong line-up heading to France
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Strong line-up heading to France

  |   Press

Thursday, 1st March 2018 – The 76th edition of Paris-Nice will take place from Sunday, 4th March to Sunday, 11th March 2018. Beside the Grand Tours, it is one of the most famous and important races on the UCI cycling calendar. The Queen stage this year will be the 7th Stage with 175 kilometres, four intermediate climbs and the last, 16,3 kilometres closing climb at 6.2%. Also the rest of the stages are true challenges, with demanding hills and intensive sprint opportunities.

But we’re ready for it! A fierce team with Ivan Cortina, Heinrich Haussler, Ion Izagirre, Gorka Izagirre, Manuele Boaro, Antonio Nibali and Luka Pibernik is a guarantee for determined performance of BAHRAIN MERIDA Team. Leaders of the Paris-Nice line-up will be Izagirre brothers.

»It’s a pretty tough race, with different stages each year. Some of the stages and climbs might be the same as in previous years, but riders certainly don’t know all the stages,« points out Sports Director Gorazd Štangelj, who will be the head of the Team on Paris-Nice. »Another element that makes this race a hard one, is the weather … Last year we had really tough conditions with wind, rain and cold. We’ll see what this year will bring.«

»On the first three sprint stages, our goal will be foremost to protect our leaders, to avoid crashes and to finish the race in time with the winner. Of course we will try to aim for the podium with Haussler and Cortina, but not at any price,« Štangelj reveals the key strategy. »The truly difficult stages will be the last few, after the time trial on the fourth stage. But with two leaders we will certainly be stronger and more flexible.«

Heinrich Haussler, one of the key members of the Paris-Nice Team, commented: »I am feeling strong and ready for Paris-Nice. I haven’t ridden a Tour in a very long time so I’m excited to be out there with the Team and test my legs with the rest of the peloton. It’s a great race to build the form for the upcoming one-day races.«