Team Novo Nordisk head to the Presidential Cycling Tour of Turkey on Sunday with memories of Italian sprinter Andrea Peron’s stellar performance on last year’s final stage still fresh in the memory and another challenging route ahead.
Eight tough stages await the world’s first all diabetes professional cycling team with plenty of mixed terrain on the menu that will hopefully mean plenty of opportunities for Peron and experienced Spanish climber David Lozano who arrives fresh from the snow of Navarre after the recent GP Miguel Indurain.
“The Tour of Turkey is always a highlight on our calendar and I’m excited to be back racing at one of our favourite races,” said General Manager Vassili Davidenko. “We’ve had some very positive results recently and I hope we can keep that going next week.”
“We know the race well and along with the beautiful scenery there is going to be some challenging days over the course of the eight stages and good teamwork will be key to our goals of trying to position Andrea and David to give them the best chance possible of some good results. Our inspirational message has always been well received in Turkey and we’ll be doing our best to Drive Change in Diabetes throughout the race and show everyone what is possible.”
The Isle of Man’s second favourite son Sam Brand will be on hand in support with veteran Hungarian climber Peter Kusztor and young Italian neo-pro Filippo Ridolfo also ready for the rolling stages.
“We’re at that stage of the calendar where the races are coming thick and fast now,” said Peron. “And after some good results at the recent races in Greece we had a really tough day in Belgium at Scheldeprijs on Wednesday, but we have to take the rough with the smooth.”
“I’m looking forward to being back racing at the Tour of Turkey at the weekend, we came close to some good stage results there last year and it will be great if we can make the top ten this time around. It’s going to be eight days of hard racing, it always is, and we know what’s in store for us, but there should be some opportunities for us, and we’ll do our best to be in the thick of the action when it counts.”
Verona native Umberto Poli and Kiwi Hamish Beadle complete the team with Beadle returning to roads he impressed on at the start of the year in the Tour of Antalya.
Topping out at close to 1,300km this year’s edition will be the 59th and starts on the southwest coast in Bodrum before following a tough route through much of the Aegean region and taking in Manisa and Gelibolu (Gallipoli) before turning East for the traditional final stage in Istanbul.
Team Novo Nordisk at the Presidential Cycling Tour of Turkey 10th – 17th April:
Hamish Beadle (NZL, 23)
Sam Brand (GBR, 31)
Peter Kusztor (HUN, 37)
David Lozano (ESP, 33)
Andrea Peron (IT, 33)
Umberto Poli (IT, 25)
Filippo Ridolfo (IT, 20)
Sunday 10TH April, Stage 1: Bodrum – Kusadasi, 202km
Monday 11th April, Stage 2: Selcuk (Efes) – Alacati, 156.4km
Tuesday 12th April, Stage 3: Cesme – Izmir (Karsiyaka), 117.9km
Wednesday 13th April, Stage 4: Izmir (Konak) – Manisa, 156.2km
Thursday 14th April. Stage 5: Manisa – Ayvalik, 186.1km
Friday 15th April, Stage 6: Edremit (Akcay) – Eceabat, 201.5km
Saturday 16th April, Stage 7: Gelibolu – Tekirdag, 131.3km
Sunday 17th April, Stage 8: Istanbul – Istanbul, 137.8km
— Tim Lindley to www.teamnovonordisk.com