Giro di Lombardia start to be delayed by rider strike
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Thursday, October 14, 2010

Giro di Lombardia start to be delayed by rider strike

by Ben Atkins at 3:21 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Fall Classics, Giro di Lombardia
 
Peloton will demonstrate displeasure at Ettore Torri’s accusation that they all dope

The start of Saturday’s Giro di Lombardia in Milano will be delayed by the riders, according to de Telegraaf, as they protest against comments made by Ettore Torri, the chief anti-doping prosecutor of the Italian Olympic Committee (CONI). Earlier this month Torri pointed the finger at all cyclists with the blanket accusation that they all doped; many riders took exception to his remarks, with several coming out in the media to protest.

The peloton will now demonstrate its feelings towards Torri’s claims on the streets of Milano as they delay the start of the biggest race of the Autumn. The intention to hold the strike was announced by Philippe Gilbert (OmegaPharma-Lotto) after his victory in the Giro di Piemonte.

"I’ve been called by Roman Kreuziger [Czech rider with Liquigas-Doimo – ed]," said Gilbert. "We will probably leave Milano ten minutes late, or so; it's a good idea that for us to act act, because we can not accept this situation."

Marco Pinotti (HTC-Columbia) was one to come out against Torri earlier in the month, with a response on his Twitter page. “If you interrogate rider connected with doping, what did you expect them to say?” he said. “They prefer to hide behind the belief "everyone is doping" instead admitting they are losers, wanckers [sic], cheaters, liars.”

Garmin-Transitions team owner Jonathan Vaughters also spoke out against the 78-year-old Italian’s provocative comments. The American, whose team stands in the vanguard of the belief that cyclists can compete clean, spoke in an interview with Velonation this week.

“That kind of stuff is hard for riders to hear,” he said.

While the rider protest is unlikely to have too much affect on the race outcome, the 10-minute delay could affect TV coverage of the race if the finish is pushed back later into the afternoon.

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