Skip to main content


Eddie Dunbar finishes alongside eventual race winner, Primož Roglič, on stage 16 to Monte Bondone at this year’s Giro. It was the day the Irishman confirmed his status as a Grand Tour contender (Photo: Fabio Ferrari)

Eddie Dunbar looks set to return to the Giro d’Italia in May after enjoying a career breakthrough ride in the Italian Grand Tour this year, despite having missed a large portion of the early season through injury.

While the Corkman crashed in his first race for Team Jayco AlUla back in February, and broke bones in his hand, be bounced back to finally showcase his world class climbing abilities at the Giro, on the way to 7th overall.

And now the Irish rider looks set to return to the race – as part of a top tier field of challengers – alongside one of his team mates who really shone on all terrain last season.

La Gazzetta dello Sport, the Italian newspaper owned by RCS, which also owns the Giro, has reported Dunbar will be in the Team Jayco AlUla line-up for the race alongside Italian team mate, Filippo Zanna.

The former Italian road race champion, Zanna took a great stage win on this year’s race to Val di Zoldo, just ahead of Thibaut Pinot (Groupama-FDJ).

However, it is likely Dunbar will head the team’s general classification challenge. He will go into the race hoping for a top five finish overall, though the terrain next year perhaps suits him a little less as the climbing has been dialled down somewhat.

This year Dunbar was as high as 4th overall with just three stages remaining, after climbing in the four-man select group at the front of the race on the 203km stage 16 to Monte Bondone.

That performance – climbing alongside Primož Roglič (Jumbo Visma), Geraint Thomas (Ineos Grenadiers) and stage winner João Almeida (UAE Team Emirates) – confirmed Dunbar as a Grand Tour contender.

And if he can stay injury free in the first part of next season, that would boost his chances of doing even better in the general classification in the 2024 edition, though he will face heavyweight rivals.

Giro champion, Primož Roglič, will not return to the Giro next year as he plans an assault on the Tour de France with new team, Bora-hansgrohe. However, his absence is more than made up for with the addition of Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) to the start list.

The Slovenian, who has already won the Tour de France twice, will start Giro 2024 as outright favourite for overall victory while last year’s runner-up, Geraint Thomas (Ineos Grenadiers), is also expected to return.

Others set to ride include Wout van Aert (Visma-Lease a Bike), GC contender Giulio Ciccone (Lidl-Trek), former race winner Nairo Quintana (Movistar Team) and Johannes Staune-Mittet (Visma-Lease a Bike), this year’s Giro Next Gen winner.

#Eddie #Dunbar #set #Giro #dItalia #return #breakthrough

Source link