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Will Saeco still be looking to dump Cipo after 4 wins?(12 posts)

Will Saeco still be looking to dump Cipo after 4 wins?DT
Jun 10, 2001 9:17 AM
Anyone think so?
re: Will Saeco still be looking to dump Cipo after 4 wins?Jon Billheimer
Jun 10, 2001 10:36 AM
They probably will because of his age. But IMO they're stupid to do so. This guy gives new significance to the Wingate test.
Have you heard something indicating they intend to do so?mike mcmahon
Jun 10, 2001 10:04 PM
I've heard nothing about Saeco "dumping" Cipollini, but with the publicity he generates, I'd be shocked if they cut him loose without gaining getting anything in return. Most people think Saeco and they think the Lion King. I'm sure he'd hook himself up with a squad that was likely to have a Giro and Tour invitation and work even harder for those stage sprints just to rub Saeco's nose in it. Unless he's seeking an ungodly sum of money for next season, what does Saeco gain by giving him his walking papers?
Saeco gets new blood---Ivan Quaranta...vram
Jun 11, 2001 12:23 AM
that's their gain. At least, that's what is the media is speculating at the moment.

CSC is interested in bagging at least 5 Italian riders. Their requirement is for someone who can climb, and a rider who can sprint. Folks are speculating that they may bag Cipo and Pantani. Those two had shown interest in being on the same team after being jilted by Leblanc. Or it may be hard bargaining tactics being used by Cipo to renew another lucrative contract--Cipo has said many a times that he would like to end his career with Saeco.

It is a fact that Cipo is no spring chicken and may not be able to perform at his level for another 3 years. From a strictly business pov, would you want to invest big bucks in Cipo for the next three years. If I were the president of Saeco I would renew his contract for another year and go from there.
Just what was said while watching the Giro these past few weeks.DT
Jun 11, 2001 6:40 AM
...they kept saying how Saeco thought he was getting up there in years and how Quaranta was being seriously considered as the new fresh legs for the team. I thought it was awesome he won 4 stages...take that, LeBlanc!! It's definitely not going to be the same watching the tour this year.
Just what was said while watching the Giro these past few weeks.mike mcmahon
Jun 11, 2001 7:45 AM
I don't have OLN so I missed out on the Giro and the accompanying speculation. I agree that Cipo has probably at best another season in his legs. However, if I were Saeco, I wouldn't dump him unceremoneously. He's done too much for Saeco to deserve that end. I was also happy to see him pull out some stage wins.
Have you heard something indicating they intend to do so?mmaggi
Jun 11, 2001 9:05 AM
Saeco will not cut him lose simply because he's still on top of his game. 4 stage wins at the Giro is nothing to sneeze at.

Cipo stated after the Giro (on an Italian TV program at the winner's podium) that he feels somewhat obligated to Saeco. He went on to state that he's been with them a long time and that money is not an issue.

I doubt Cipo would leave and I can't see Saeco leting him walk.
Here's some info from my 2 cents....JamesT.Kirk
Jun 11, 2001 9:29 AM
After 4 wins against Quaranta and the rest I think it's clear he still has the ability and motivation to win. Realistically, if Saeco lets him go and doesn't get Quaranta, who will they have? Granted, Salvodelli "El Falco" put in great ride in the Giro, but he's it. I think any team would love to have Cipo even if he's not winning every sprint. No one else is as entertaining or can draw a crowd as well, which, from a sponsors point of view is what this is all about. I think he'll stay at Saeco personally.

Anyway, here's some clips from

May 29th:

Mario says:

Next season, Mario Cipollini will not be riding for Saeco, bringing an end to a six year period with the team. His contract finishes at the end of 2001, and "apparently, my team does not want to keep me," said the 34 year old Tuscan sprinter.

"To finish my career with Saeco would have been an honour. They want to lead from the front but I have the impression that I do not form part of their plans."

He wants to sign a two year contract with them, and there is an outside chance that he will. If not, five other teams have approached him for his signature.

"I hope that it will be decided in the next fifteen days. I would like to go on holidays in calm spirits."


May 30th:

One option that is being discussed in the Italian press at the moment is whether Ivan Quaranta will take Cipollini's place in the Saeco team. This may be the reason why Cipollini and Quaranta have not seen eye to eye in the last few days. In stage 8, Quaranta claimed that Saeco were trying to put him out of the race after an attack during the stage.

Saeco DS Antonio Salutini said that "For now, nobody has proposed a renewal of Mario's contract, who up until a short time ago, did not know his future, whether he would still be riding or not."

"Now he has won the races, has found his condition again, and wants a sign from us. This is why he has said those things. Before the end of the Giro, Mario will meet the patron of Saeco Zappella. The same thing happened two years ago in the Tour, the contract of Cipollini was expiring, he started winning and signed for two more years."

"We have worked with Cipollini for eight years and we would not change it now. Saeco is Cipollini and Cipollini is Saeco, it is hard to imagine this team without him."

That Cipollini will remain "is my hope...but we speak here about billions, and these are decision that are of particular concern to our team and to Cipollini obviously."
This reminds me of two years agopeloton
Jun 11, 2001 12:15 PM
Two years ago during the Tour Cipo announced that he would not be a part of Saeco for the upcoming season as they didn't wish to renew his contract. He then went on to win four (consecutive!) stages of the Tour and resigned with Saeco. I suspect this may be a similar situation. Saeco didn't know of Mario's future plans, ie- to continue racing or retire, or if he could keep up his winning ways at all. In both cases he has shown that he can keep up his winning ways, and will choose to do so in the future. Suspicion makes me believe that Cipo may have said this to get a contract offer more quickly from Saeco, and to entertain the media as he loves to do. I see him riding for Saeco next year, and winning still.

BTW- I love how every year people say that Cipo can't win any more, that he is too old. He still comes back and wins. Four stages of the Giro today would say that he could at least win a couple tommorow.

My guess anyway...
This reminds me of two years agoDINOSAUR
Jun 11, 2001 12:23 PM
I think maybe the Lion King is the Lion Fox and he is playing mind games with Saeco in order to secure a new contract.
This reminds me of two years agomike mcmahon
Jun 11, 2001 12:33 PM
Sounds like the typical cat-and-mouse tactics with mind games on both sides. I love negotiations in pro sports.
This reminds me of two years agoknowitall
Jun 11, 2001 12:38 PM
yeah, like the the guy that said "Cipo has probably at best another season in his legs"... what bunch of cr@p coming from someone that didn't even watch the race!