By Jean-François Quénet
Being 12th on GC at the start of the last week of the Giro isn't exactly what Stefano Garzelli expected prior to the beginning of the race in Sardegna but Garzelli says his stage win in Bergamo is relief from the suffering.
"I've gone all right for the past three days," he said at the finish of Saturday's stage, but was quick to recall Stage 10 to Genova when he reached the sanctuary of Nostra Signora della Guardia in 19th position 2.07 behind Leonardo Piepoli. "Since the first kilometer that day, I wasn't going at all," he said. I've suffered the heat like never before."
Garzelli knows exactly where his Giro turned for the worse. "Five riders from the famous breakaway [on Stage 8 - ed.] are still ahead of me," he said. "Considering the way I'm going now, I should be able to finish in the top five and that will be a good result."
At 34, Garzelli says he can now set his 2007 ambitions beyond the Giro. "Next year the world championship will be held in Varese, the town where I was born. It's something I'd like not to miss because it's exceptional for any bike rider to race for the rainbow jersey at home."