Results tagged “Milram” from spare cycles

You could have stuck a limo between Petacchi and the next nearest sprinter. His Milram train gave him a good leadout for what was probably his easiest -- as well as fifth and final -- victory of this year's Giro di Italia.

Liquigas lead the peloton much of the final kilometers with Di Luca tucked in at the end and Best Young Rider Andy Schleck sitting on his wheel. It was a very dominant victory for Di Luca and a surprise showing by Schleck, who I've already spotted in the latest Cervelo and Speedplay ads. Schleck wasn't as strong as Di Luca, but what impressed me most is that he didn't fade as the race went on. He was able to finish strong in yesterday's time trial, which shows he already has the skill to manage his efforts for a Grand Tour.

Giro Stage 18&19: 4x4

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Alessandro Petacchi easily took his fourth win on Stage 18 -- it helps when all the other sprinters have abandoned -- and Iban Mayo soloed through the rain for Saunier Duval's fourth win by the fourth different rider (Piepoli, Ricco, Simoni). PezCyclingNews didn't give Di Luca their #1 pick, but you do have to credit them for having this to say about Saunier Duval pre-Giro:

Saunier Duval Should Be The Team Of The Race Gilberto Simoni is the unquestioned leader of the Saunier Duval squad, but they're bringing an explosive combination of riders that should make for some most excellent racing.

Leonardo Piepoli returns to the Giro after setting the mountains on fire last year. Simoni and Piepoli alone were fireworks on the road, but it just gets better with the addition of this year's breakout success, Riccardo Ricco. I can't wait to see the three of them light up the slopes of the mountains all over Italy. And those are just the three sure-things - heaven help us if the Iban Mayo of old returns. I'm not holding my breath on Mayo, but just think of the possibilities...

Tomorrow's time trial looks to be interesting. Danilo Di Luca looks to have things sewn up but a rainy course has a way of mixing things up. I also look forward to seeing if Dave Zabriskie can deliver on another Giro TT win. With Team CSC losing MAN as a sponsor, they could badly use a win right now.

Apologies with the late Giro coverage -- too busy with Maker Faire and work deadlines

Stages 6 and 7 of the Giro brought a little more of the same and a little bit of something new to the mix. Alessandro Petacchi got his second stage win on stage 7 as his Milram train worked solidly. They pulled back both a Salvatore Commesso (Tinkoff) breakaway (i.e. yet another Tinkoff breakaway) and an ultimo chilometro breakaway by Fabian Cancellara on the racetrack finish. Petacchi showed his power yet again as he went first at 200m and held everyone off.

Stage 6 was the stage that mixed things up, though a bit by design. After working so hard to get the maglia rosa, Danilo Di Luca willed the jersey to a long breakaway. The sprint teams weren't big fans of the stage either, perhaps because of the narrow and twisty final kilometer, including a 90 degree bend with 300m to go. Laverde (Panaria) and Pinotti (T-Mobile) were the riders that took advantage of the strategic situation and each finished the stage happy: Laverde took the stage win in a 'sprint' that Pinotti conceded, happy to be moving into the maglia rosa overall.

Giro Stage 3: Return of Ale-Jet

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I've never seen a rider so happy to win as Alessandro Petacchi, audibly sobbing in his return to the front of the sprint. After almost a year of healing from a fractured kneecap in last year's Grio, today's win gives Ale-Jet twenty Giro d'Italia wins. It was a messy win for Petacchi as he was forced to win without his usual leadout train.

Ignatiev (Tinkoff) and Visconti (Quick Step) gave panic to the sprinter teams and Petacchi was forced to burn his leadout men as part of the chase. The breakaway was caught with 2.5km to go but Milram was further used up as Quick Step counterattacked with Tosatto. That attack was also nullified but things became really chaotic in the final kilometer.

Credit Agricole's Nicholas Roche launched an attack and Thor Hushovd went down in a crash (post-crash photo of Hushovd's welt), taking a small number of riders with him (possibly Cunego and Simoni). Petacchi launched his sprint with 300m to go. Robert Forster tried to come up his left side as Maximiliano Richeze fell off Petacchi's wheel. Robbie McEwen was boxed in behind Lampre's Napolitano and couldn't get around in time. JJ Haedo was nowhere to be seen and finished 77th, most likely as a result of Hushovd's crash.