It’s been a busy year for whatever kind of doctor it is that gives you surgery to relieve saddle sores. First World Champ Oscar Freire, and now Giro champ and TdF stage winner Paolo Savodelli. “I will be operated on to remove an annoying cyst. I believe my season at the highest level is over,” il Falco reported to Eurosport today. As a result, George Hincapie, who’s shown good climbing legs so far this year will lead Disco’s charge at this weekend’s Classica San Sebastian.
Also sitting out this weekend’s “climbers classic” will be T-Mobile black sheep Alexandre Vinokourov, who’s down with a cold. Oscar Sevilla will replace him as the standard bearer for the boys in pink. There’s trouble at another oddly-colored ProTour squad as well. Cafitta will no longer be co-sponsoring Lampre next season, to be replaced by Valsir, co-sponsor of 2003 World Champ Igor Astarloa’s Barloworld team. More interestingly, however, it ends Cannondale’s decade-old involvement in professional road racing at the highest level, leaving as the only American ride in the ProTour.
While we’re on the topic of sponsorship changes, the once-and-current San Francisco Grand Prix (at some time inbetween, the T-Mobile Grand Prix) will soon be the Barclay’s Global Investors Grand Prix, or simply B’sGIGP for short. Corporate sponsorship is awesome.