EF Education First are sending two Grand Tour debutants to the Giro d’Italia with an experienced group of teammates to guide them through the three-week race. American Sean Bennett, 23, and Ecuadoran Jonathan Caicedo, 26, will endure a “steep learning curve” and “redefine what it means to be extremely tired,” says directeur sportif Charly Wegelius.
“A Grand Tour is a deep dip into cycling. Sean, like most first-time three-week-race riders, will find new limits,” he added. “We’re confident that he’s got the skills to make the most of this chance but he’s got no expectations on him. He’s there to watch and learn.”
Caicedo, too, will have no pressure on his shoulders. “He’s a very quick learner and a smart guy on the bike. He’s on the same kind of plan as Sean,” Wegelius says.
Nate Brown, also named for the Giro, said he was “pretty stoked” that Bennett made the team. “I asked if we could room together because I think we’ll get along great. Going into your first Grand Tour, you don’t really know what to expect. I remember my first one and I had no idea what I was doing. If I can give Sean a bit of knowledge to help him get through, I’ll have already accomplished something.”
The team will rely on its more veteran riders to take whatever opportunities present themselves.
Joe Dombrowski, in his fourth Giro, is looking ahead to the mountainous final week where he has shown himself in the past.
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