By Gregor Brown
Renato Di Rocco will once again be the Italian cycling federation's (FCI) president after elections March 15. The Roman is the only candidate for the four-year term in one of the most powerful cycling countries.
"It is of great satisfaction to represent this cycling nation," he said to Cyclingnews. "I want to keep going because my work is not finished and I think I can do a lot more."
Since he first won the position in 2005, he has dealt with his share of doping scandals – Ivan Basso, Riccardo Riccò and Emanuele Sella – but he believes he is in a position to help the country's cyclist grow on the international level.
"In the last years, we re-launched the time trial project, which had been completely abandoned. We are trying to give it a hand because it is a specialty that we want to recover."
Italy lacks the level of time trialists like the ones from the USA and Great Britain. Di Rocco is making ground with established riders like Marco Pinotti and Manuel Quinziato, and new comers, like the current Under 23 World Champion Adriano Malori.
"There are about six or seven time trials at the junior level. They learn the craft there."
Di Rocco admitted there is a lot of work to do building for the London Olympics and to maintain the nation's status at the World Championships. Though the country won the men's road title for the last three years, he maintains keeping alert is key to success.
"We learn from other nations and they learn from us. When the directors are in the other countries there is always a communication with the other nations, like Great Britain, Australia and Holland. Cycling is always changing and we need to be attentive to everyone."
Di Rocco's only rival for the position of president was Claudio Santi, but he has since withdrawn his candidature.