Emirati rider Yousif Mirza has vowed to give his best on his WorldTour debut after he was named in UAE Team Emirates’ seven-man squad for the Amgen Tour of California.
The 28-year-old will line up in the race, which begins on Sunday, alongside colleagues Simone Consonni, Filippo Ganna, Marko Kump, Vergad Stake Laengen, Kristjian Durasek, Federico Zurlo and Andrea Guardini.
For Mirza, who became the first road cyclist to represent the UAE at the 2016 Olympic Games, is looking forward to testing himself.
“This will be my first WorldTour tour and I will do my best to give all my support to the team,” he said. “The weather is wonderful in California and just ideal for cycling. We are ready to take on the Tour of California and looking for some stage wins.”
— @UAE-TeamEmirates (@TeamUAEAbuDhabi) May 13, 2017
The seven-stage race starts in Sacramento on Sunday with the course involving sprints, a mountain climb and an individual time trial before the grand finish in Pasadena on May 20.
Marco Scirea, sporting director of UAE Team Emirates, said: “Our goal in this race is for our young riders to gain experience as well as some great results.
“For the first time the Tour of California is now part of the UCI WorldTour calendar and it is important that the team does well. Our confirmed line up for this race is strong as we have riders like Consonni, for the sprint, Ganna for the Individual Time Trial and Durasek for the General Classification.”
World champion Peter Sagan, winner of the 2015 edition, of Bora-Hansgrohe will be aiming to add more honours to his CV, while the field also includes two-time defending Dubai Tour champion Marcel Kittel (Quick-Step Floors) and Team Sky’s Elia Viviani.