Danilo Di Luca cruised home to take the 2007 edition of the Giro d’Italia on Sunday. While Liquigas controlled the race from day one, I was still captivated with various components of the race. First, Di Luca has had bad days at the Giro before. Most of which have come during the third week of racing which kept me watching. Combine that with his weakness in time trialling, I was watching right up until the end.
Like any good movie, you need good back stories to keep things interesting. First, you had the rebirth of Ale-Jet, Alessandro Petacchi. While the race for the points jersey was over the day Robbie McEwen stepped on the plane home, I was loving the ways Petacchi won his five stages. No two were the same. It was also clear he was truly loving it.
Every day, the question would be, when (not if) Tinkoff would attack. This team really earned their wildcard entry. If nothing else, these guys love to ride. To steal a line from Slap Shot, “Old time cycling, Eddie Merckx, right coach?”
Keeping with the Slap Shot theme, cycling’s brother team is now the Schleck brothers. younger Andy Schleck took a big step forward with his second place finish along with the best young rider jersey.
Maybe it was just me but I also had a bit of schadenfreude watching Gilberto Simoni and Damiano Cunego continue to try to one up eachother. This round goes to Gibo who finished 34 seconds ahead of his old apprentice.
In the disappointing category was Paolo Bettini who is suffering from the curse of the world champion. The Cricket barely chirped these last three weeks.