Filippo Pozzato and Sebastian Langeveld out of today's Dwars Door Vlaanderen
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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Filippo Pozzato and Sebastian Langeveld out of today's Dwars Door Vlaanderen

by Jered Gruber at 5:53 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
Two favorites laid low after tough Milano-Sanremo

As the Northern Classics kick off in earnest today with the Dwars Door Vlaanderen, two big favorites will be watching from the sidelines, Omloop Het Nieuwsblad winner Sebastian Langeveld and perennial cobbled contender, Filippo Pozzato.

Following an excellent effort in Milano-Sanremo on Saturday, which indicated a return to the form that made him a threat in the races from La Primavera to Roubaix, Pozzato fell ill.

"Pozzato return from Milano-Sanremo ill," said Katusha team manager Guennadi Mikhailov to De Morgen. "That's why he won't be in the Dwars Door Vlaanderen. Maybe he will resume racing on Saturday or Sunday at Harelbeke or Gent-Wevelgem. The decision will be made on Friday at the earliest."

This is the second consecutive year that sickness could affect Pozzato's run at the Classics. In 2010, he saw his classics campaign derailed by a nasty bout of the flu. At this point, it's not quite critical. If he can start this weekend at Harelbeke or Gent-Wevelgem, things should be ok, but a DNS at today's Dwars Door Vlaanderen, the E3 Harelbeke, and Gent-Wevelgem would surely put him well behind his rivals heading into April 3rd's Ronde Van Vlaanderen.

On the Rabobank side, good news seems to be in short supply. The announcement of a second surgery on Matti Breschel's bum knee further solidified his absence from the early part of the season, but the notation on the team's website that the squad's early season sensation, Sebastian Langeveld, will miss today's Dwars Door Vlaanderen is surely an extra bit of less than helpful news.

Thankfully for Rabobank, Langeveld's absence due to the lasting effects from a banged up shin stemming from his crash on Saturday at La Classicissima, shouldn't be too long lasting. Langeveld is set to return to racing on Saturday at the E3 Prijs Harelbeke.

The young Dutchman put in a sterling effort in February's Omloop Het Nieuwsblad to take his biggest career win. He heads into the Spring Classics as part of a hopeful Rabobank squad that should still shine, even without the help of its star signing, Matti Breschel.

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