Pavel Sivakov sealed ninth overall at the Giro d'Italia after a strong performance in the final time trial to become the team's youngest-ever rider to finish in the top 10 of a Grand Tour.
Eddie Dunbar was able to finish the final 17-kilometre test against the clock despite an unfortunate crash, securing 22nd overall. The young Irishman was a late addition to the team's lineup yet grew in strength across the duration and earned a podium finish on stage 12, finishing third from the day's breakaway, in what was a fine Grand Tour debut.
Sebastian Henao, Jhonatan Narvaez and Ivan Sosa all rode strongly in support of Sivakov, while experienced duo Salvatore Puccio and Christian Knees played a critical role in guiding the team's youngest-ever Grand Tour lineup. Tao Geoghegan Hart is already on the road to recovery after crashing out of the race on stage 13.
Richard Carapaz (Movistar) wrapped up the overall title in Verona, with Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain Merida) and Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) rounding out the podium. Chad Haga (Sunweb) won the final stage.
Last year I had a tough season, but you have to work really hard and believe in yourself and everything can change - and that’s what I did.
- Pavel Sivakov:
“It has been a hard three weeks. You have to be really focused every day, you can never relax and when you are doing that for a whole Grand Tour it is not easy - I’m really happy to have done it. The way the team worked so hard, the way they worked for me, was amazing - I’m very happy.
Chapeau to Pavel. He is 21 and ninth on GC. It’s an unbelievable performance from him."
"I feel proud of everyone and all the work done by the riders and staff. It’s been six months in the planning - even if we didn’t have any expectations going into the race, we still wanted to push these guys and get some results, whether that was a stage victory or a top 10 or a jersey. We had to find something.
"We actually didn’t think about a top 10 because it was such an ambitious target. But straight away Pavel, after the first week, went into seventh with the white jersey. That boosted everyone and it’s been fantastic. The guys have been riding really well - sometimes like they were defending the yellow or pink jersey, and at the bottom of some final mountains we have had five of our guys - all super young. For us it shows that we have the future here and we know how to pass on our experience. The guys learnt a lot.