Lampre's Saronni feels weight of new teams, like Sky
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Sunday, February 07, 2010

Lampre's Saronni feels weight of new teams, like Sky

by Samuel Morrison at 2:20 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 

Lampre-Farnese Vini boss Giuseppe Saronni feels that new teams Sky, HTC-Columbia and Garmin-Transitions are throwing their weight around with the International Cycling Union (UCI).

"It is a reality that cycling's pillars are passing towards English speaking countries," Saronni told Tuttosport. "Teams with big budgets, like Sky, have a huge political pull. We have to have more weight."

Saronni referred to the difficulties he had over the winter to secure his team's ProTour licence despite being one in the sport for 20 years.

The UCI ProTour Council (UPTC) registered Italy's Lampre as a ProTour team for a temporary, three-month period just prior to the start of the season. It had originally rejected the registration because auditors cited administration problems.

"We are working and we will soon satisfy all the requests from the UCI [which means a new management company based in Switzerland - ed.] I am confident the situation is going to be resolved by the deadline of March 31."

Saronni, 52, thought about retiring over the winter despite signing sprinter Alessandro Petacchi to boost the team's wins.

"My desire was fading," he admitted. "But the riders and personnel have always kept me going. And the Galbusera family, a historical [Wilier bike] sponsor in cycling, asked me not to stop."

Saronni is a former professional cyclist, racing from 1977 to 1990. He won the Giro d'Italia twice, the World Championships, Flèche Wallonne and Milano-Sanremo.

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