A busy schedule in early August will be key for CCC Team’s riders to put the finishing touches on their extended training block, Sporting Manager Stever Bauer said.
“We are now two weeks out from Vuelta a Burgos so we are very much at the business end of our race preparations. We have 16 riders currently training at altitude in Livigno ahead of our return to racing at the end of the month. Our goal when creating our calendar for the remainder of the season was to maximize the number of races in early August and give all of our riders the opportunity to get back to the start line as quickly as possible. For this reason, we have locked in races such as Vuelta a Burgos, La Route d’Occitanie, and Tour de l’Ain to build up to the key WorldTour stage races in August and to ensure none of our riders are left sitting on the sidelines,” Bauer explained.
“All 28 of our riders will return to racing by the end of the first week of August in what will essentially feel like the start of a new season. Running a triple race program will stretch our resources but our goal is to get back to business and start winning some races. At this stage, our calendar is comprised of 130 race days which will see most of our riders race an average of 35 days in the condensed four month season.”
Matteo Trentin will headline CCC Team’s roster at Vuelta a Burgos, while Greg Van Avermaet will line up at Strade Bianche, and Ilnur Zakarin will return to the start line at the Tour of Poland.
The Grand Tours
CCC Team President Jim Ochowicz outlined the team’s Grand Tour plans which include both General Classification and stage win aspirations.
“We currently have a long list of 14 riders for the Tour de France so we will finalize our selection after the early August races once we can gauge rider form after such a long break. We will be lining up with three clear leaders in Greg Van Avermaet and Matteo Trentin for stage wins, and Ilnur Zakarin will provide an option for the General Classification and climbing stages,” Ochowicz confirmed.
“Patrick Bevin will line up at the Giro d’Italia this year with his eyes on the time trials, as well as the UCI world championship time trial which will mean forgoing the Tour de France. Bevin will be joined by Jakub Mareczko who will be our card to play in the multiple sprint stages, and Alessandro De Marchi plans to complete an ambitious Tour de France and Giro d’Italia double. After his Tour de France debut with CCC Team, Zakarin will return to the Vuelta a España, where he was third overall in 2017, and will be joined by Víctor de la Parte.”
Having raced just five days with CCC Team at the UAE Tour, Zakarin is looking forward to getting back into racing and lining up at the team’s ‘home race’, the Tour of Poland.
“I’m excited to restart the season properly and get back to the start line, particularly at the Tour of Poland which is, of course, a really important race for CCC Team. Then my focus will be on the Tour de France. With eight or so mountain stages, I think there are some good opportunities for me and as a team, we will have multiple cards to play in the different terrain. Then, if everything goes to plan, I will line up at the Vuelta a España which is, of course, a special race for me after my podium result in 2017. We have to be thankful to have every race day this year so I will take every day as an opportunity and hope to achieve some nice results for the team,” Zakarin said.
The Classics Team
After racing together at Omloop Het Nieuwsblad and Kuurne – Brussels – Kuurne, Van Avermaet and Trentin will re-unite at Milano – San Remo.
“Despite the changes in the race calendar, all of my goals remain largely the same and I will focus on the Classics and the Tour de France. I will restart my season with Strade Bianche, a race I still hope to win, before continuing the Italian block with Gran Trittico Lombardo and Milano – Torino and then Milano – San Remo. Then it will be nice to race on home soil at the Tour de Wallonie before lining up at Bretagne Classic and the Tour de France. I think these races will give me a good preparation before the Tour and help me to get to my top shape. It’s going to be strange to line up with not many races in the legs but at the end of the day, it’s the same for everyone. After the Tour de France, I’ll be turning my attention back to the Classics with Liège-Bastogne-Liège, Gent Wevelgem, Ronde van Vlaanderen, and Paris-Roubaix on my program. For me, it doesn’t matter what time of the year we race the Classics, I know I’ll be just as hungry to win in October,” Van Avermaet said.
Trentin will join Van Avermaet at the Tour de Wallonie and Bretagne Classic in preparation for the Tour de France.
“It’s finally time to race and I’m really looking forward to it. At the end of the day, lockdown in Monaco allowed me to rest mentally so I was really ready to restart training properly and now I’ve been back on the bike for a couple of months. My shape is good and it’s getting better at altitude. My focus in the first part of the season will be Milano – San Remo and the Tour de France and then the second block will be all about the Classics. But I think there will not be much of a moment to breathe. It will be full gas from start to finish and I’m really looking forward to that and getting together with the guys again,” Trentin added.
2020 race calendar
Vuelta a Burgos 28 July – 01 August
La Route d’Occitanie – La Dépêche du Midi 01 – 04 August
Strade Bianche 01 August
Gran Trittico Lombardo 03 August
Milano – Torino 05 August
Tour de Pologne 05 – 09 August
Tour de L’Ain 07 – 09 August
Milano – San Remo – 08 August
Gran Piemonte – 12 August
Critérium du Dauphiné – 12 – 16 August
Il Lombardia – 15 August
VOO Tour de Wallonie – 16 – 19 August
Bretagne Classic – Ouest France – 25 August
Tour Poitou – Charentes en Nouvelle Aquitaine 27 – 30 August
Tour de France 29 August – 20 September
Tour de Hongrie 29 August – 02 September
Tirreno – Adriatico – 07 – 13 September
GP Cycliste de Quebec – 11 September
GP Cycliste de Montreal – 13 September
Tour de Slovaquie – 16 – 19 September
BinckBank Tour 29 September – 03 October
La Flèche Wallonne – 30 September
Giro d’Italia – 03 – 25 October
Liège-Bastogne-Liège – 04 October
Binche – Chimay – Binche 06 October
Brabantse Pijl – 07 October
Amstel Gold Race – 10 October
Gent Wevelgem – In Flanders Fields – 11 October
Scheldeprijs – 14 October
Ronde van Vlaanderen – 18 October
Vuelta a España – 20 October – 08 November
AG Driedaagse Brugge – De Panne – 21 October
Paris – Roubaix – 25 October