Damiano Cunego (Lampre-Caffita) is contemplating the end of the season, which has been tougher than last year's after he got mononucleosis in April. Cunego finished yesterday's Coppa Sabatini in 37th place, nearly eight minutes behind the winner. It's clear that his form is still not close to his best.
Cunego's team director and mentor Giuseppe Martinelli commented to tuttobiciweb.com that Cunego was "...not on a good day yesterday. I insisted that he didn't abandon, I wanted him to finish the race, also out of respect for the guys that had worked for him from the start of the Coppa Sabatini. At the end, however, Damiano did not have the legs and didn't get into the group of 21 that played out the race."
Speaking about the last races of the season, Martinelli said, "In Zurich on Sunday I saw a lot of riders who were going really strongly, Bettini above all. Those will be the ones who will figure in the last races. With regard to Damiano, I think he's on the wane. Most likely, he is thinking of next year, considering what happened this year. I think in September, he has not raced enough and that he's lost a little bit of his edge. Four races is not really enough. He trained hard, because he knew that all the other riders were racing. In the end, I think it would have been better to race more and train less. Perhaps it would have been better if Damiano did a stage race like the Tour of Poland in September."
Martinelli also noted that after coming back from mononucleosis, Cunego was in good form in August, but the disease would have made it difficult to maintain his peak. The young Italian will, however, finish his season with the Japan Cup on October 23.