One rider who does have youth on his side is Liberty Seguros' Giampaolo Caruso. On Stage 17 of the Giro d'Italia, the 24 year-old Italian was part of the six-man breakaway that formed after the penultimate climb, and on the lower slopes of the final ascent to Limone Piemonte, Caruso was the only one to have the audacity to attack eventual stage winner Ivan Basso (Team CSC).
"Today I thought before they attacked me, I would to attack, because I did not have anything to lose," said Caruso.
"I had seen that Basso was very strong, but I decided to attack him anyhow. I am very satisfied, because I wanted the fans to see at the front; I did everything I could, but I could not respond to the many changes of pace," he said.
Said team manager Manolo Saiz: "Liberty Seguros-Würth continued today in the same fashion, with a very brave Giampaolo Caruso, fighting against the best in spite of his youth. Michele Scarponi, however, is not okay and he will have some tests next Monday; his bad form is probably due to some viral infection."
Saiz also had some interesting comments to make about the contenders, for which the race will surely be decided over the coming two days.
"We must do an analysis of the race when the Giro ends, but today we have seen a willing Simoni, a Savoldelli that always finds friends to help him in complicated moments, and a Di Luca who has started paying [the price] for having been two months on top [form]."
Placed 15th on the overall classification going into today's Torino time trial, 10'25 behind the maglia rosa of Paolo Savoldelli (Discovery Channel), Caruso finished by saying that he will go into the final stages of the race with the same attitude he went into yesterday's stage: "I do not have anything to lose.
"Tomorrow it will be a difficult day, but I have confidence in doing well in the time trial, because now what counts is power and less to be a specialist. [The stage to] Sestrieres will be harder still, especially because of the Finestre climb, but I have great morale and I'm going to do my best until the last day. I do not have anything to lose."