Milan-San Remo 2014: five sprinters who could win on the revised route

Omega Pharma-Quickstep confirm Mark Cavendish will start race

Milan-San Remo is back in the hands of the sprinters thanks to the removal of the new proposed new climb, the Pompeiana, by organisers amid safety concerns.

Poor weather has left the roads of Pompeiana in need of repair, and with not enough time to complete the work, RCS Sport confirmed the removal of the climb. With the ascent of Le Manie also shelved, the first Monument of the season will return to the course which yielded eight sprint finishes out of 11 between 1997 and 2007.

Gerald Ciolek celebrates victory at last year’s Milan-San Remo, flanked on the podium by Peter Sagan and Fabian Cancellara (Pic: Sirotti)

Since the announcement, a number of big-name sprinters have wasted little time declaring their ambitions to compete, with Omega Pharma-QuickStep boss Patrick Lefevere confirming 2009 winner Mark Cavendish will now start after the Manx Missile previously ruled himself out.

In-form Andre Greipel has also confirmed he will race, while last year’s runner-up Peter Sagan (Cannondale) and winner Gerald Ciolek (MTN-Qhubeka) were already keen to compete  before the route was changed.

When the re-worked route was last run in 2007, Spanish sprinter Oscar Freire was victorious but which sprinters could be celebrating this time round on Sunday March 23?

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