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“I won’t go for the sprint today - the important thing is not to lose time with Rigoberto. It’s going to be a tough day. It’s long stage, it’s going to rain all day long and we’re going to have to stay un...

Photo: OPQS / Tim De Waele








10.05.2014 @ 14:29 Posted by Aleksandra Górska

Even though in an absence of Mark Cavendish Alessandro Petacchi is the Omega Pharma-Quick Step fast finisher for the 2014 Giro d’Italia edition, the 40-year old Italian made it clear that protecting Rigoberto Uran’s advantage over other general classification contenders is more important than contesting a sprint for a stage victory and, possibly, also for the pink jersey today.


Being just five seconds behind Orica-GreenEDGE riders and with time bonuses on offer, Petacchi would have a good chance to claim his 28th stage victory in the Italian grand tour and become the oldest pink jersey holder.


The 40-year old Italian won Grand Prix Cerami one month ago and was pleased with his increasing disposition during his last race appearance before the Giro , the Tour of Turkey. Petacchi made it clear, however, that after gaining a very promising advantage for Uran over most dangerous contenders for an overall victory in the three-week event yesterday, remaining hectic Irish stages are all about staying united and protecting the Omega Pharma-Quick Step leader.


“I won’t go for the sprint today – the important thing is not to lose time with Rigoberto. It’s going to be a tough day. It’s long stage, it’s going to rain all day long and we’re going to have to stay united,” Petacchi said.


Uran himself gave Petacchi his nod to contest the bunch sprint, but the Italian veteran remained unconvinced about making a good use of this opportunity.


“Petacchi is Petacchi, he can do the sprint,” the Colombian told Gazzetta dello Sport – but the man himself was circumspect.


“I think Rigoberto already has a nice advantage on some of his direct rivals and it’s important to maintain that. The Giro is a race that you can start winning right from the very first day,” Petacchi said. “We’ve started very well, so it’s better to concentrate on winning the Giro as a team rather than on the possibility of me taking the pink jersey today.”


“It could be a risky finale. There’s a bend with 300 metres to go,” he said. “We’ll see how it pans out, but I really don’t think I’ll be going for it.”



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