Sagan wins third in Sardega. Petacchi no longer frightened.

Petacchi with trusty Wilier.

Rename in progress: the new official name is the Giro di Sardegna.

Peter Sagan won for the third time, taking stage three in a dominant sprint over Manuel Belletti (Colnago–CSF Inox) and Roberto Ferrari (Androni Giocattoli). The young Slovak who certainly isn’t slow demonstrated once again he can win on a hilly course and also beat the speedsters.
Th Liquigas-Cannondale rider now has 14 seconds on Damiano Cunego with only Saturday’s fifth 174km stage from Oristano to Gesturi remaining. Not a hugh chunk of time but this feels like a done deal given Sagan’s confidence and form.
Spiders active. It seems like most every break has a spider in it. Today the arachnid was Jonathan McCarty. Liquigas-Cannondale and Acqua & Sapone shut down the break with 10k to go but McCarty won the green climber’s jersey for his efforts. A fine showing by the team in this Giro di Sardegna.
What Twisted Spoke is wondering about is what the Hell Alessandro Petacchi is doing in the race. When we last left the aging but still craft sprinter back in September, he was under investigation in Italy for doping. “I spent more time with lawyers than I did on my bike or with my family,” Petacchi told Italy’s La Gazzetta dello Sport newspaper.
We quote from the cyclingnews article: “Petacchi has been accused of using PFC (Perfluorocarbon), which boosts the oxygen-carrying capacity of the blood without raising haematocrit level, and human serum albumin, which can be used to reduce haematocrit levels artificially.”
Petacchi rode the Vuelta under a cloud of suspicion. “I race every time as though it were the last and it’s frightening,” he said. Well, it took five months but apparently he got over his fright and the Italian Olympic Committee decided to shelve Petacchi’s case. This also seems to be the outcome of at least half of these investigations.
We had the pleasure of meeting Petacchi at Interbike in Vegas. He autographed a race poster for my son. Now, we have no idea about guilt or innocence but it would sure be nice to know wassup. Anyone got the phone number for CONI and a translator?
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