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Milano-Sanremo, typically known as La Primavera has been moved to August 8th in the reshuffled and revised 2020 racing calendar.
Teams Can't Afford To Stay Home
With nearly five months of racing lost due to the coronavirus, teams around the world are desperate for race days. The revised UCI calendar may salvage the season for WorldTour teams, but many lower division teams find themselves with fewer opportunities to provide value to their sponsors.
RCS Sport, the organizer of Milano-Sanremo has recognized the situation that Italian second division teams face, and has taken measures to include all Italian ProTeams. The UCI denied RCS Sport's initial request to allow an additional two teams to the Italian monument. The request was rejected because the maximum field size of 176 riders would have been exceeded.
RCS Sport then made a request to the UCI through the Professional Cycling Council to reduce the number of riders per team to six, thereby allowing for the inclusion of more teams without exceeding the 176 rider capacity. The second request was approved.
"In this way we were able, once again, to support the Italian movement and get all three Italian ProTeams at the start" explained RCS Sport.
Extra Teams, Extra Kilometers
In total, the 2020 Milano-Sanremo will include 27 teams, six of which will be second division.
In addition to increasing the number of teams taking to the start in Milan, RCS Sport has increased the distance of what was already known as the longest race in professional cycling.
In response to opposition by some communities along the traditional route, Milan-Sanremo has been extended to a distance of 299 kilometers.
Milano-Sanremo is a long race, but the action really starts as the peloton approaches the Cipressa. Teams organize full lead outs to ensure their leaders begin the climbs of the Cipressa and the Poggio in a strong position.
The new route for the 2020 edition will feature an additional climb before the Cipressa. Will the new climb combined with the reduced rosters cause chaos as the peloton climbs and descends its way to the iconic via Roma?