Filippo Ganna has toggled between track and road in recent years, claiming a brace of world titles in the individual pursuit while finding his feet in the WorldTour ranks in the colours of UAE Team Emirates. It is a balancing act that will continue at least until the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, where Ganna hopes to strike gold as part of Italy’s increasingly competitive team pursuit squad, while also racing on the road, probably with Team Sky, after La Gazzetta dello Sport said his move to the British team is a mere formality.
“I think it’s the number one objective for me in the coming years,” Ganna told Cyclingnews, refusing to confirm a move to Team Sky. “We have targeted it and we’re working to do what we can together. We’re hoping that in the final build-up we’ll be able to do a nice block of work to get there in form.”
Mixing the boards and the road is never straightforward but Ganna has something of a role model to follow in the shape of fellow countryman Elia Viviani, who claimed gold in the omnium at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and who may very well be part of the Italian pursuit quartet in Japan, while bring a successful sprinter on the road.
A year and a half before the 2016 Games, Viviani decided to sign for Team Sky, reasoning that it was the best environment in which to combine his track and road ambitions. Ganna seems set to follow a similar build-up to Tokyo 2020 by switching to Team Sky at the end of this season. Viviani has since moved from Team Sky to Quick-Step Floors to ensure more freedom in road races but has no regrets about dividing his career between the road and track.
Ganna agreed that Viviani’s commitment has served as something of an inspiration.
“We’ve got two different styles, obviously, because he’s a sprinter and I’m a passista, a rouleur, but he has managed to be competitive on the road and the track,” Ganna said. “We’ll just have to see how I develop over the coming years and how I work with my team.”
Overcoming the odds
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