Mar 18 2007
I bet you thought I was taking the weekend off. Hardly; what does this look like to you, ProCycling? Ha. Even without a paycheck, Cyclocosm is a 24/7 operation. Anywhoo, on to the results of the previous days’ racing. The Race to the Sun finally arrived at the sun, as Discovery finally cracked race leader Davide Rebellin after several attempts. Curiously, the penultimate stage was won by Contador’s former wind tunnel teammate Luis Leon Sanchez – Manolo Saiz must be very proud. Anyway, three stages and the overall at the ProTour opener certainly can’t hurt the American squad’s hunt for a new sponsor.
Of course, the past few days hasn’t been all fruit cups and gingerbread for the team formerly known as US Postal. At Tirreno-Adriatico, star off season signing Ivan Basso got a little dinged up and had to bail. Not so for compatriot Paolo Bettini, who fell repeatedly, but refused to give in. Il Grillo even did the TT stage on a regular bike (for comfort and safety, I’m assuming) and has sworn he’ll compete at next weekend’s Milan-Sanremo even if he’s “covered in plaster”. Several minutes ahead of the gimping Italian, Stefan Schumacher lead a non-Mafia nation sweep of the top 10, dropping young Riccardo Ricco from race leader to 17th after two days of rockstar riding.