May 15, 2002 5:57 AM
|How can you not like this guy? Hap
Cycling-Cipollini hits out at Tour de France chiefs
ESCH-SUR-ALZETTE, Luxembourg (Reuters) - Italian Mario Cipollini has hit out at organisers of the Tour de France for not inviting him to ride in this year's race in July.
After winning his second stage in the Giro d'Italia race on Tuesday, he said: "I think I can say that someone like me has to be at the start of the biggest race in cycling. I'm more important than 50 unknown Frenchmen that even the French public don't know who they are."
During his career Cipollini has won 12 stages at the Tour de France and has worn the leader's yellow jersey in 1993 and 1997.
|Unless I'm totally clueless, the Tour invites TEAMS (nm)||brider|
May 15, 2002 6:13 AM
|Unless I'm totally clueless, the Tour invites TEAMS (nm)||Sintesi|
May 15, 2002 7:08 AM
|They have to take the top qualifying teams, but after that they can invite whoever they want. I think they had 5 teams that were chosen arbitrarily by Leblanc & Co. which would be 4 french DII teams and Saeco (mostly because Simoni won the Giro last year). The TdF could expand their field and said they would for this year's Giro winner if A. he wanted to, and B. his team was not already included. So theoretically Pantani could go if his team won. Mario could go if he won enough stages in the Giro that public demand basically nessicitated his inclusion. It's up to the TdF officials to include whoever they feel is in the best interest of competition.
But, don't hold your breath about Mario, the animosity between himself and the tour will probably negate his inclusion. But, you never know.
|He's still the best sprinter in Tour de France History||PODIUMBOUNDdotCA|
May 15, 2002 6:24 AM
|So I agree with what he said. He won how many stages in a row? Its like stopping Lance from going. It sucks theres so much politics in this sport at times.
My 2 cents,
|He's still the best sprinter in Tour de France History||legs|
May 15, 2002 7:23 AM
|I think if mario would of managed to actually finish a tour..
he might have been invited.. but then again.. they left out zulle too...
so you know you have to give zabel credit for actually completing the race.
a stage race is not a one day race if you know what i mean...
|Why such a big deal about finishing the tour?||elviento|
May 15, 2002 12:10 PM
|Losing half an hour in a mountain stage isn't really better for the competition compared to not riding mountain stages.|
|Mario has more TdF stage wins that Zabel and Armstrong (nm)||Bruno|
May 15, 2002 10:06 AM
|Nope. Armstrong has 12, Mario has 12 nm||mr_spin|
May 15, 2002 2:31 PM
|Armstrongs wins came in the mountains, Marios on the flats||PODIUMBOUNDdotCA|
May 15, 2002 8:23 PM
|K so one of Armstrongs came from a break in what I believe was more a flat stage and a lot of them came from time trials as well. But where he WON his tours were in the climbs. Mario on the other hand could win almost any sprint as long as he was fresh. So its complete crap to omit Mario. Its like making a sprinter do best of 5 instead of best of 3. Sprinters need endurance to sustain the effort but theres a point where their legs blow apart. From being a track sprinter I know this.
|What about the Finish||Alpedhuez55|
May 15, 2002 8:24 AM
|"I think I can say that someone like me has to be at the start of the biggest race in cycling."
Well Mario, how about someone like you at the finish of that TDF?
Yes he may make the first week a little more interesting but it is a three week race. If he would make an effort to struggle over the mountains and make a run at the green jersey. At least some of the french teams may make things interesting beyond the first week. I do not think having him out of the tour is that big of a loss.
|Everybody wants to see a Mario - Zabel showdown (nm)||Bruno|
May 15, 2002 10:04 AM
|I won't miss him||mr_spin|
May 15, 2002 10:26 AM
|Mario might have more than 12 wins at the Tour if he bothered to finish. He finishes the Giro, even wins the last stage a couple of times, but won't finish the Tour? How could The TDF not see that as insulting?
As great as he is, as colorful and likable as he is, I for one will not miss him. Have you been watching the Giro? Everyone just cruises along and waits for Mario's boys to start the train, then they all jump on it. Boring. Really boring. The year Mario won four stages in a row? That wasn't four times as boring because the equation is exponential. Nope, it's 16 times as boring!
Some people say it's boring to watch Lance dominate in the mountains, but that is totally different. Lance at least has to break a sweat getting up the mountain on his own. I'll watch the Mario who bridged over to the break solo and then won Ghent-Wevelgem any day. That is exciting and shows how powerful he really is. I'm tired of the train. I think the Tour is, too.
May 15, 2002 10:37 AM
|this year Telekom without Ullrich will be like the Saeco of old. Chasing down all breaks over the first week, and setting a fierce lead-out for Zabel, making bunch finishes all but inevitable. Doesn't bode well for all those guys who's only shot of winning a stage is the long breakaway!|
May 15, 2002 10:55 AM
|There is that potential, but I don't think Telekom dominates quite like Mario and the red train did. And this year I think Credit Agricole will be pushing Telekom hard. Losing the green jersey on the last day last year has given them a mission for this year. I think the intermediate sprints will be contested a lot more, and those can easily turn into breakaways. Good would be Zabel and O'Grady going head to head, then escaping. Bad would be their lieutenants going out and taking the points so it all depends on the finish.
Don't get me wrong. I'm not saying not including Mario eliminates boring racing, but since riding the train is the only way Mario races in stage races, eliminating him doesn't hurt!
May 15, 2002 11:00 AM
|I don't think O'grady has recovered from his operation yet. Pretty sure he's not started racing, which makes it seem pretty unlikely he'll be in there to give Zabel a run, but maybe?|
|It was his choice to join that team.||No_sprint|
May 15, 2002 3:17 PM
|I'm sure he knew what his chances for getting in the TDF would be if he joined that team. Same with Pantani. I'm sure their own personal greed and large paycheck outweighed everything else in their decision making process. I might have done the same thing unless I wanted to make sure I'd be in the biggie.|
|leaving him out makes counting stage wins silly...||aet|
May 16, 2002 9:25 AM
|after this year, lance will have the most wins of any active cyclist but it will be a useless stat since the guy he was tied with is not allowed to race.|| |