By Gregor Brown
Ivan Basso, of team Liquigas, has dismissed any chance of attempting the hour record in 2009. Basso confirmed that his focus for 2009 is a victory in his home stage race, the Giro d'Italia.
"I am not thinking about it because I have just returned from a two-year disqualification," he told Cyclingnews. "It is better to think about the Giro right now."
Basso had significantly improved on his time trial form in the years leading up to his suspension. His form is still somewhat unknown since returning from the two-year ban, which ended last October.
Some famous Italians have held the hour record throughout history, including: Fausto Coppi (1942) and Francesco Moser (1984). The current record of 49.7 kilometres was set by Czech Ondrej Sosenka in July 2005.
One of the key rivals that Basso will face at the Giro d'Italia in May, Lance Armstrong, is rumoured to be considering a record attempt. Earlier this month the American posted an entry on his personal blog with a photo of a suitable track bike.
"I had not heard about Armstrong and the hour record attempt," said Basso. "I think that he only has the Giro d'Italia in mind right now."
The hour record is established by riding the furthest distance on a velodrome in 60 minutes. The International Cycling Union standardised equipment limits in 2000, disallowing aero helmets, wheels and frames.