Pozzato ill, could miss Tour of Flanders
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Thursday, April 01, 2010

Pozzato ill, could miss Tour of Flanders

by Conal Andrews at 6:57 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour of Flanders
 

There is a question mark over the participation of Filippo Pozzato in this weekend’s Tour of Flanders, with the Italian road race champion being hit by flu just days before the start.

According to Sporza.be, the former Milan-Sanremo victor fell ill and could miss the Classic as a result. It is one of his biggest goals of the season, as is the following week’s Paris-Roubaix.

“He will now do at most two hours behind the car,” said Katusha directeur sportif Jef Braeckevelt. “For the rest of the time, he’ll be back in the team hotel.”

He started the Three Days of De Panne this week, but withdrew from the race during yesterday’s stage.

The team has been hit by a double blow, in that its other big rider for the race, Sergei Ivanov, is also ill. He has been suffering from stomach problems for several days and is clearly also not having the best preparation for one of the hardest events of the year.

Pozzato finished fifth in Flanders last year, then placed second behind Tom Boonen (Quick Step) in Paris-Roubaix. He showed his potential for the Belgian Classics when he won the Omloop Het Volk in 2007 and the E3 Prijs Vlaanderen in 2009.

The 28 year old rode well in Milan-Sanremo this year, but was unable to stay clear of the sprinters’ teams.

If he withdraws from Flanders, it will be the second high-profile name to be forced out this week. Edvald Boasson Hagen (Team Sky) will give the race a miss due to a niggling problem with his Achilles tendon.

 

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