Colnago CSF Inox rider Sacha Modolo has warned that the only way to stop Mark Cavendish from win­ning the gold medal at the London Olympics will have to ride aggres­sively and dis­tance the British rider on the key climb of Box Hill.

Modolo fin­ished sec­ond behind Cavendish in last year’s test event in London and knows the British rider has made the Olympic road race the biggest goal of his 2012 season.

“There’s only one way to beat Cavendish and that’s to make sure the race doesn’t end with a bunch sprint,” Modolo said.

“People have been pre­dict­ing that the race will def­i­nitely end in a sprint but in the Italian team, we’ll be rid­ing aggres­sively to make sure it doesn’t hap­pen. It’s going to be a very unique race. There are only five rid­ers per team and then climb­ing Box Hill nine times will play a huge fac­tor in the race. It’s not a hard climb but it is very nar­row and so the pelo­ton will be strung out.”

“If we can get rid of Cavendish dur­ing the final laps and then the front group rides together all the way to the fin­ish, then we’ve got a chance of fight­ing for victory.”

Modolo will swap his usual white and blue Colnago C59 Italia bike for a black Colnago C59 for the Olympic road race. Under International Olympic Committee rules, bikes can only carry one logo and so Colnago has pro­duced a spe­cial bike for Modolo sim­i­lar to the Colnago Team Edition bikes used by Thomas Voeckler and Team Europcar at the Tour de France.

Modolo won a stage at the recent Tour of Austria and pol­ished his fit­ness for London by also rid­ing the Tour of Poland.  He will be part of the five-rider Italian team that also includes Marco Pinotti, Elia Viviani, Luca Paolini and Vincenzo Nibali. 2004 Athens Olympic road race win­ner Paolo Bettini is the national coach for Italy.

“I’m ready to race and I’m will­ing to fol­low what ever tac­ti­cal plan Bettini decides to fol­low. We know we’ll have to beat rid­ers of the cal­iber of Tom Boonen and Philippe Gilbert, Matt Goss of Australia and Norway’s Edvald Boasson Hagen. But Bettini knows how to win races and win the Olympics. I think it’s going to be a race full of sur­prises.” Modolo predicted.

Source: Colnago Newsroom