Mario Cipollini writes a column daily in La Gazzetta dello Sport newspaper during the Giro d’Italia. Lately, he has been critical of Mark Cavendish and team Sky.
He wrote on Saturday, the day after Cavendish’s win in Cervere, “I’ve got great admiration for Cavendish, who showed once again to be the best, not withstanding Sky’s errors”.
Over the last few days, he criticised Cavendish for losing position in the final kilometres of a sprint. Cavendish said his form was good, he passed the mountains well last weekend, but Cipollini responded in a press conference, “The real mountains are yet to come”.
Cavendish was asked about Cipo’s comments. He said, “I won the Milan-San Remo at 23, I won the World Championships at 26, 20 Tour de France stages. How many here? 10? When I’m fat, I’m fat, but it’s important that I’ve taken these wins!”
The other classifications…
The Giro d’Italia awards the stage winners and leaders’ jerseys daily, but little is mentioned about the other classifications. Journalists are reminded daily about them, however. Press releases arrive, dumped in their work spaces, stating the leaders in the Fuga to the Super Team classifications.
Cycling Weekly has a look at the current leaders in each classification as of rest day two…
Fuga Pinarello (Most number of kilometres in escapes):
1. Olivier Kaisen (Lotto-Belisol) 639km
2. Martijn Keizer (Vacansoleil-DCM) 612
3. Miguel Minguez Ayala (Euskaltel-Euskadi) 475
Stage combativity (Jury awards points):
1. Mark Cavendish (Sky) 34pts
2. Andrey Amador (Movistar) 25
3. Matteo Rabottini (Farnese Vini) 25
4. Martijn Keizer (Vacansoleil-DCM) 25
Intermediate Sprints (Points gained during stage, not the finish):
1. Martijn Keizer (Vacansoleil-DCM) 25pts
2. Olivier Kaisen (Lotto-Belisol) 13
3. Mark Cavendish (Sky) 13
Azzurri d’Italia (Points – 4, 2, 1 – to top three finishers):
1. Mark Cavendish (Sky) 12pts
2. Joaquin Rodriguez (Katusha) 7
3. Andrey Amador (Movistar) 5
Super team (Points gained for placing rider in top 20)
1. Garmin-Barracuda 243pts
2. Sky 220
3. Katusha 211
Winning team (Times of best three riders):
2. Astana 10″
3. Lampre-ISD 52″
Fair Play (points for “breach of regulations”):
AG2R-La Mondiale 0
OmegaPharma-Quick Step 20
Androni Giocattoli-Venezuela 180
Pancani takes overall lead
After 15 days of racing, err betting, Rai Sport’s Francesco Pancani leads in the Pronostico Giornalisti or the journalists’ Giro d’Italia. The Italian overtook our Gregor Brown, who held the lead for the first 13 days of racing.
Pancani leads with 108 points, a slim, very slim, one point advantage over Brown going into the mountainous third week.
The Giro’s jury awards points for predicting the top five placers with extra points going to exact placings. Stage winners enjoy a moment on podium at the next morning’s sign in, a Limar helmet and sunglasses. For the overall in Milan on Sunday, the top journalist gets bragging rights and a case of Astoria Vini, which will likely be consumed that before dinner.
The “Walter Gallone” Pronostico GC:
1. Francesco Pancani (Rai Sport) 108
2. Gregor Brown (Cycling Weekly/Cycle Sport) 107
3. Andre Meganck (VRT-Sporza) 102
Rabottini – In memory of Casartelli
Matteo Rabottini (Farnese Vini) won the stage to Pian dei Resinelli yesterday, but also took the Casartelli award for the first rider crossing the Valcava climb at 85.3 kilometres into the stage.
The 1992 Olympic Champion, Fabio Casartelli died on July 18, 1995, at the Tour de France. He crashed on the descent of the Col de Portet d’Aspet during stage 15.
Casartelli lived in Albese con Cassano and trained on many of the roads used in yesterday’s stage. Polisportiva di Monte Marenzo, part of the Italian association against muscular dystrophy, awarded Rabottini a tablet marking 20 years since Casartelli’s Olympic road race win.
Frank Schleck (RadioShack-Nissan) abandoned the Giro d’Italia yesterday shortly after the stage started from Busto Arsizio.
Schleck “was forced to withdraw after 28 kilometres,” read a press release. “The Luxembourger crashed in stage 11 to Montecatini and suffered from an injury in the right shoulder since that day.”
Team manager Johan Bruyneel called in Schleck to race the Giro d’Italia at the last minute to replace team-mate, Jakob Fuglsang. He usually races the Tour de France and maybe the Vuelta a España. He only had once raced the Giro, when he debuted in the Grand Tours in 2005.
“I have a big problem with my shoulder,” he told Cycling Weekly on Friday, two days after he crashed with Alex Rasmussen (Garmin-Barracuda). “Right now, I’m in pain. I’m taking it day by day.”
According to La Gazzetta dello Sport newspaper, Schleck is unhappy the team made him race the Giro and with how Bruyneel is trying to separate him and his brother Andy ahead of the Tour de France.
It added that Frank Schleck’s participation in the Tour is in doubt and that the brothers may join another team at the end of the year. According to the newspaper, Johan Bruyneel is interested in working with Alberto Contador after his doping suspension ends.
Giro d’Italia 2012: Latest news
Giro d’Italia 2012: Live coverage
Giro d’Italia 2012: Stage reports
Stage 15: Rabottini takes tough win in Giro
Stage 14: Amador wins Giro’s first high mountain stage as Hesjedal reclaims lead
Stage 13: Cavendish makes it three
Stage 12: Bak attacks to win
Stage 11: Ferrari wins Giro stage on ride to redemption
Stage 10: Rodriguez wins thrilling finale to take lead
Stage nine: Ventoso wins in Frosinone as Goss and Cavendish fall
Stage eight: Pozzovivo takes another Giro win
Stage seven: Hesjedal moves into Giro lead
Stage six: Rubiano solos to epic Giro stage win
Stage five: Cavendish bounces back for another stage win
Stage four: Garmin-Barracuda win TTT to take lead
Stage three: Goss wins in Horsens as Cavendish and Phinney crash
Stage two: Cavendish wins in Herning
Stage one: Phinney wins time trial
Giro d’Italia 2012: Photo galleries
Giro d’Italia 2012: Teams and riders
Giro d’Italia 2012: TV guide