Vincenzo Nibali wants the classic that’s missing from his palmares
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Friday, October 15, 2010

Vincenzo Nibali wants the classic that’s missing from his palmares

by Ben Atkins at 12:12 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Fall Classics, Giro di Lombardia
 
Vuelta a España winner has recovered from Australia trip and looking forward to Lombardia

vincenzo nibaliVincenzo Nibali (Liquigas-Doimo) will start tomorrow’s Giro del Lombardia as one of the riders to beat. His best finish in the race to date was his 34th place in 2007, but his fifth place in last weekend’s Giro dell’Emilia shows that the Vuelta a España winner has recovered from the exertions of the journey to the World Championships in Melbourne, Australia.

“I’m in excellent condition, both physical and mental,” said the 25-year-old from Messina, Sicily. “Last Saturday, in the Giro dell'Emilia, I suffered from the travel to Australia and my legs were slightly blocked. Now I have recovered in full, and I couldn't ask for more. I'm fine, I'm ready, and I’m determined to fight to the finish.

“A classic is still missing from my palmares,” he added, “Saturday could be the right day.”

Although Nibali has yet to be involved in a battle for the win in Lombardia, he knows very well what it will take to be there when the action starts. He also knows exactly who his main adversaries will be in his quest for a first major one-day race victory.

“It's an insidious race that doesn’t allow for errors,” he explained. “We will tackle climbs that will severely test the legs: we will have to optimize our strengths and not waste them.

“Opponents will be many,” he said, “from Gilbert to Kolobnev, from Evans to Schleck. Besides them I expect that other riders will give their souls to win. This means that nobody should be underestimated.”

Having finished third in the Giro d’Italia, while riding in support of teammate winner Ivan Basso, then won the Vuelta, the Liquigas-Doimo team will be putting all of its efforts behind Nibali in Saturday’s race.

“It's a race that you can only win with optimal condition,” explained Liquigas-Doimo director sportif Alberto Volpi. “The last 50 kilometres will be the hardest, with tough climbs like the Ghisallo and Sormano; also the stretch of waterfront will be anything but simple.

“Nibali arrives at this race fit and motivated: the team will ride to help him win.”

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