Paolo Bettini won the Giro di Lombardia from a three man breakway that included Gilberto Simoni and Frank Schleck.
Giancarlo Ferretti looked all set for his new sponsor to take over the place of Fassa Bortolo. The news was that Sony Ericsson penned a six year sponsorship agreement with “Feron”. Today the deal looks like it is collapsing since the intermediary between Sony Ericsson and Ferretti did not contact the right people at Sony Ericsson HQ. Ferretti is in Sweden trying to straighten out the situation. This would leave an open spot on the ProTour for AG2R, Agributel, Communidad Valenciana, or even Naturino Sapore e Mare.
Play the latest game that is sweeping the world, the WADA Doping Quiz. Here you can answer such questions as :True/False “If the Doping Control Officer arrives at my house at an inconvenient time, such as when I am leaving to go shopping, I can refuse to be tested”… Answer is False. “Refusing to be tested is an anti-doping rule violation”… Let’s think of some situations when you wouldn’t want the doping guys to show up
The WADA logo needs some work though, it is supposed to be a painted equals sign to mean that we should strive for equal competition. But, the design makes the equal sign look like two pickles. I can say that because I race in non-sanctioned events
The cycling season draws to a close this weekend, as the “Race of the Falling Leaves” is the last “monument” race on the calendar. There are plenty of previews available to get an idea about the beautiful course and the host of protagonsit that want to take the win. Defending champ Damiano Cunego has had a year to forget , so don’t look for a repeat. If he does race he will probably be super -domestique to a very on-form Gilberto Simoni. Simoni has been on fire recently showing great form at the Giro Dell’Emiglia. He is super motivated to win Lombardia partly as a “thanks” to Lampre as he moves over to Ferretti’s newly sponsored team.
Paolo Bettini looks like another favorite to win. He rode away from the field at Zurich a few weeks ago, but he had anger helping him stomp the pedals. Bettini had to take out his World’s frustrations to take the win. He was just narrowly beat at the GP Beghelli this past weekend, and may be tuning up for Lombardia. Look our for Alejandro Valverde. He was seen warming up his legs on some of the climbs in the Giro de Piemonte. He may show some late season form. Anyway, here are the links:
Velonews has a write up on next year’s Discovery Team and the void left by the now retired Lance Armstrong. Joining Armstrong are quite a few Americans and a Canadian, namely Mike Creed, Antonio Cruz, Patrick McCarty and Ryder Hesjdal. The American team is losing its American flavor for now, but there is still “Big Georgie” Hincapie and Tom Danileson.
As predicted here yesterday(well, not exactly, but I did say he is a favorite..), Murilo Antonio Fischer won the Giro del Peimonte in a field sprint, beating dutchman DeJongh and Italian Paride Grillo.
Fischer is quoted as saying:
“It is an important victory. I needed a vicotry in a ‘classic’ race this year. The team performed beautifully. They put me wherever I wanted to be for the sprint finale. I still have very good form. After the World Championships road race, I could have unplugged the cord for the season. Instead I am still winning which form me is a sign of responsibility and taking my job seriously. I don’t believe that I will have had a good chance in the Giro di Lombardia, the course does not suite my abilities. However, I will ride in the race and try to place and get a good result. “
For Fischer this is his eight victory of the year and the third in October alone after the Memorial Cimurri and GP Beghelli.
Giro del Piemonte: Fischer vince in volata
Thursday marks the 92nd running of the Giro del Piemonte or The Tour of Piedmont as we Yanks like to say. We also like to say Rigot or Muzarel instead of Ricotta and Mozzarella, but that isn’t me…
Something about those extra vowels makes New York Italians want to cut them off. Is it based on tradition? a variation of the Napolitan dialect, which seems to cutoff the vowel endings. I don’t know. Anyway, the Girooo delleee Piedmonteeee is a course where many types of riders can win. The one day tough men and the sprint specialist can have a go. The big favorite has to be Mr. Fischer. The Brazilian on the Pokemon squad (Naturino Sapore di Mare) is the most on form sprinter at the moment. Then we have Daniele Bennati who got pipped at the line in Paris-Tours by Erik Zabel. Take your pic of the other favorites, but some of the big names may be saving their energy for the last monument of the year, the Giro di Lombardia.
Giovedi` il 92.mo Giro del Piemonte
Bjarne Riis has plenty to be happy about. The CSC team is the top squad of the ProTour in 2005. They have a total of 372 points with a 321 point advantage over second place Rabobank.
“It is a great victory for us. We had a fantastic year with numerous results in very important races” Said Bjarne Riis who does not intend to reduce his ambitions in the future.
It is always our objective to get better. I never doubted that the results would come. Naturally we are proud of what we accomplished and at the same time we need stimulate our ambitions.
With Lance Armstrong retired Riis is thinking big, as Ivan Basso seems to be the odds-on-favorite to win the Tour de France next summer.
Antonio Murilo Fischer of Naturino (the team with the ugliest kit ever seen – think Pokemon meets lightning bolts) is on fire lately being unbeatable in field sprints.
Fischer won the GP Beghelli, the follow up to yesterday’s Giro Dell’Emilglia won by Gilberto Simoni.
Fischer had the full support of the Natruinos as they set him up perfectly for the final sprint where he beat such notable riders as Paolo Bettini and Paride Grillo. Fischer has been on fire this year winning several important Italian races. Recently he placed 5th in the World Championships road race with not much team support.
1 Murilo Fischer (Bra) Naturino-Sapore di Mare 4.52.27 (41.012 km/h)
2 Paolo Bettini (Ita) Quick Step
3 Paride Grillo (Ita) Ceramica Panaria-Navigare
4 Fabian Wegmann (Ger) Gerolsteiner
Erik Zabel took the expected win today in Pairs-Tours, just beating out Daniele Bennati of Lampre. Racing for the last time in the magenta colored jersey, Zabel was super motivated. Robbie McEwen did not get a good line in the final sprint (that usually is not a problem for him anyway) and came in 5th after fellow Aussie Allen Davis of Liberty-Seguros.
Zabel wins his third Paris-Tours