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Jack Bauer is up for the Giro challenge
May 3rd, 12. Following today's announcement he will race the Giro d'Italia, Jack Bauer told RoadCycling.co.nz he is ready to face his first Grand Tour.
The 2010 NZ Road Champion will join his Garmin Barracuda team in the three week tour starting in Denmark on Saturday. It is the biggest tour of his career.
"I'm pretty excited! Everybody says that your first big tour is a new experience in pain and what you can put yourself through – I'm up for the challenge!" he said in an exclusive inteview.
A heavy Classics season has provided Bauer with hundreds of race kilometres heading into the Giro, a race which has been on his radar for quite a while.
"It's been in the plan for most of the year so I have been gearing up for it," he said.
Bauer's primary role is to support teammate Tyler Farrar in the sprint finishes, and to look after him as much as possible throughout the stages to deliver him to the final few kilometres ready to fire.
"I will be playing a supporting role. It's hard to see it from the outside, but day in and day out, the little things that we can do on the road to help out the boys who are riding for GC or the sprints all make a difference."
Bauer's time trial skills will also be an asset to the team on Stage 4's team time trial in Verona. The 27 year old describes team time trials as being 'Garmin's baby', and he will be a key weapon as they target the stage win.
In addition to these two roles, Bauer is there to learn the intricacies of tour racing and to see how he handles such a large volume of racing.
"I have no idea how I will cope. The longest tour I have done was the Tour of Britain and that was no more than eight days. This is 21 days! It's all in the mind, right? I just have to get stuck in. It's definitely something that I want to do, I feel I'm ready for it."
While the team has its specific goals, personal success for Bauer would be to play his role within the team well – and to finish the tour.
To finish is a huge goal! 3,503km of racing, six days in the medium mountains and five days in Italy's high mountains - not to mention all the tough summit finishes and their even tougher cut off times.
Last year 1 in 4 starters dropped out before the time trial finale in Milan.
"It's my first Grand Tour and it's about time that I get stuck into one. It's not going to be easy, but I'll get through it. "
In the next couple of days, RoadCycling.co.nz will share Bauer's review of his season to date - his first in a World Tour team.
Bauer is the second Kiwi named for the Giro d'Italia, Jesse Sergent is racing for his team RadioShack Nissan Trek.
Who is Jack Bauer?
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