Speaking about the shortened stage of the Giro two days ago, Team CSC rider Dave Zabriskie welcomed the decision make by the organisers in moving the start 50 kilometres down the road to Villa di Tirano, at the foot of what would have been a treacherous descent of Forcola di Livigno.
"Yesterday [Monday] they shortened the stage and I don't know who made the final decision, but I think the sport is getting a little more sensible," he wrote in his personal diary on davezabriskie.com. "There is just no reason to descend a mountain in the freezing rain from the beginning of a race. The way they handled the snow at Paris-Nice earlier in the year was very nice also."
The Utah native also had a few words to say about Basso's fall from grace: "Ivan had a bad last couple of days and his hopes of winning the Giro are over. This is the life, things go wrong, but life goes on."
Finally, in his typically enigmatic style, he describes cresting the 2758 metre-high Passo di Stelvio on Stage 14 akin to "being on the moon" - but it was the descents that worried him most.
Wrote Zabriskie: "I stopped and put some extra clothes on and then took off down the other side. I was warned earlier in the day about the tunnels on the downhill; they are narrow, dark, wet, and twisty. So you're going down a mountain letting it all hang out and then bam - you're blind and you slam on the brakes, but not too hard or you're going to slip and fall in the water, then try to decide which way the road is turning. It was seriously like something out of Lord of the Rings, I wish I had some elvish light with me, but it all turned out OK."