The Fassa Bortolo team has been criticized for being 'Alessandro Petacchi and some other blokes', but yesterday at the Settimana Internazionale Coppi-Bartali in Italy and Spain's Setmana-Catalana, the team proved it does have a bit of depth too.
In the team time trial at Coppi-Bartali, Fassa won by six seconds, beating Liguigas-Bianchi and the US-based Navigators squad. That was enough to put Francesco Chicchi into the overall lead after his second place in the morning's road stage.
Chcicchi said he'd made a mistake in the morning's sprint finish. "I made an error of judgment," he said. "I was on [Marco] velo's wheel when [eventual winner Guillermo] Bongiorno went on my right and I thought it was too early. I hesitated for a couple of seconds."
Meanwhile in Spain, the team's neo-pro Claudio Corioni gave notice that me might be a rider to watch this season as he out-sprinted Aitor Perez (Spiuk) and Josep Jufre (Relax Fuenlabrada) to take the leader jersey from the previous day's winner Uros Murn (Phonak).
"I got separated from the lead group on the climbs," said Corioni, "but thanks to the help of Bruseghin and the presence of Sanchez and Frigo in the lead group, who did not work with the break, I was able to get back up with the leaders. We made contact with two kilometers to go and I was immediately getting into position for the sprint. I tried to learn from my mistake the previous day when I left it too late, and it turned out well!"