• Ready to rumble...Richie Porte will be flying the flag for Sky and Australia at the Giro d'Italia (Getty Images)
Richie Porte will have the experience of more than 20 editions of the Giro d'Italia to draw upon when he leads Team Sky in the first Grand Tour of the year.
By
Cycling Central

6 May 2015 - 9:23 AM 

Poll: How should we support Porte at the Giro d'Italia?
With the Giro d'Italia only one week away, it's time to make a very important decision.

Thirty-year-old Porte has only competed in the Italian Grand Tour twice, but the nine riders that make up the Sky squad have clocked 21 editions of the race.

The Australian is a favourite for the race after a stunning early season which has seen him collect top honours in Paris-Nice, Volta a Catalunya and Giro del Trentino as he builds towards the 9-31 May race.

“The Giro d’Italia has been my main goal of the season," said Porte. "I’ve worked very hard through the winter and am entering the race strong, healthy and up for the challenge. The competition will be tough, and obviously anything can happen in a Grand Tour, but we’ve got a great group of riders going into the race and we are ready for it.”

Porte will be joined on the squad by the experienced Bernhard Eisel, two-time Giro stage winner Vasil Kiryienka and Kanstantsin Siutsou who has ridden the race five times.

Leopold Konig and Sebastian Henao will support him in the mountains while Italian Elia Viviani will represent the team in sprint finishes.

“Team Sky has had a great start to the year and we are going into the first Grand Tour of the season with a strong team, led by Richie," said Team Sky principal Dave Brailsford.

“Richie is entering the race in good shape and with real focus and determination. He’s made a lot of small changes across a number of areas in his preparation and training this season after the illness that affected his performance in 2014. His results this season speak for themselves with excellent wins at Paris-Nice, Volta a Catalunya and Giro del Trentino. This is one of the biggest and toughest races to win in the calendar but we go to the Giro confident about the challenge ahead.”

@richie_porte: Can't wait to do a lap of Italy with these blokes!

Team Sky for the 2015 Giro d'Italia: Bernhard Eisel (AUT), Sebastian Henao (COL), Vasil Kiryienka (BEL), Leopold Konig (CZE), Mikel Nieve (ESP), Richie Porte (AUS), Salvatore Puccio (ITA), Kanstantsin Siutsou (BEL), Elia Viviani (ITA).

Giro d'Italia broadcast details
SBS will broadcast every stage of the Giro d'Italia live. When possible, we will also live stream the race online here at Cycling Central before the television broadcast begins. In addition to morning highlights online, there will be highlights every day at 6pm on SBS 2.