Q36.5 Pro Cycling Team ready for Strade Bianche

This Saturday, March 2nd, Q36.5 Pro Cycling Team will take on one of the most stunning races of the calendar, the one-day Italian Classic Strade Bianche, with a motivated seven-rider squad.

29 February 2024.

In a historic twist, this year’s edition of Strade Bianche extends beyond the 200km mark for the first time since its inception in 2007. This significant alteration promises to inject a fresh dose of intensity into the competition, with riders set to navigate a daunting 215km route comprising 15 demanding gravel road sectors and an additional loop around Siena.

Leading the charge is the seasoned campaigner Gianluca Brambilla, a familiar face on the Strade Bianche stage who boasts an impressive podium finish from the 2016 edition. With his wealth of experience, Brambilla assumes the pivotal role of road captain, and will be tasked with guiding his teammates through the twists and turns of this formidable challenge.

Joining Brambilla are a trio of Italian talents: the strong rouleur Filippo Conca, the up-and-coming Walter Calzoni, and the promising debutant Alessandro Fancellu. Alongside them, the British contender Mark Donovan returns for his second foray into the white-knuckle world of Tuscan gravel, while the Spanish sensation David de la Cruz and the Australian James Whelan make their eagerly anticipated Strade Bianche debuts.

Looking ahead to the monumental task that lies in wait, Brambilla reflects, “This year we will have a different final for Strade Bianche. For me this race was already very hard and now it’s bound to be even harder. I enjoyed the previous route a lot so I’m curious as to how this longer version will play out. My condition is good, I started the season well but last week in Gran Camino I suffered quite a bit with the bad weather but hopefully that hasn’t affected my shape and I will be able to have good legs on the weekend. We come with a really good, strong team and we will give our best to race aggressively and fight for a good result in the end,”

The 18th edition of Strade Bianche starts from Siena and weaves its way towards Montalcino through the grippy picturesque white roads of the Tuscan countryside. In total, the peloton will have to overcome 71.5km on the farm tracks before they hit the final hurdle before arriving at the iconic Piazza del Campo: the steep climb of Via Santa Caterina, with 16% max gradients.

For the Q36.5 Pro Cycling Team, this marks the second WorldTour classic of the season, following a gripping Omloop Het Nieuwsblad at the Opening Weekend.

Strade Bianche line-up:
Gianluca Brambilla (ITA)
Walter Calzoni (ITA)
Filippo Conca (ITA)
David de la Cruz (ESP)
Mark Donovan (GBR)
Alessandro Fancellu (ITA)
James Whelan (AUS)