Oleg Tinkov watched down from his villa as the sprint blew by in yesterday's Giro stage 9 to Lido di Camaiore. The Russian business man must have been impressed with his 21 year-old charge, Russian Nikolai Trusov.
"I got excellent help from teammates who led me out to the front, and I was even catching Petacchi's wheel when we touched the bikes with someone, I think from Rabobank," said the rider to Tinkoff's Press Officer Sergey Kurdyukov. "In a speedy sprint like that 800 metres is short, too short to regain what you've lost. I'm not complaining about this episode, I have no illusions; war is war, that's what sprinter's work look like.
"Everybody only sees the finish line, not each other. People told me I almost clashed with Paolo Bettini, but honestly I didn't even have an idea that he was beside. Those who watched the helicopter view also remarked of the episode when an Italian from Acqua e Sapone rode up to me and tried to elbow... they said it was Garzelli, maybe it was him ...
"The Italians are very emotional and aggressive in the sprint, half an hour after the finish they cool down, and everything is back to normal."
Trusov went on to finish 15th but gain valuable experience bumping up against the best in the game.
"About the final result – well, perhaps I would be much better-off if I pushed my way through with my arms and elbows like Danilo Napolitano does, but that's definitely not my way, and the peloton doesn't like riders with such style too much. I don't feel like earning a similar reputation from the very start of my career."