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Basso credits his team

Ivan Basso kisses the spoils

Ivan Basso kisses the spoils (Image credit: Sirotti)

Giro winner Ivan Basso paid tribute to his eight CSC teammates after the race. All members of the CSC squad finished the Giro, and in addition to Basso's three individual stage wins, the team also won the team time trial and finished second in four stages (Basso three times, Jens Voigt once).

"This wonderful achievement in my own native country would have been impossible without the skilled support of my dedicated teammates," said Basso. "They repeatedly sacrificed their chances for individual glory to help me keep the lead in ways that were vital to victory – a victory shared by all nine of us. It is my hope that this win sets the stage for our performance at the Tour de France.

"Each stage of the race was its own little drama as members of my team chased down breakaways, rode tempo at the front of the main bunch and controlled the flow of the race. I was both humbled and energized by their support."

"Riding in support of a man like Ivan is rewarding," said Bobby Julich. "Not only because he achieves consistently strong results, like this Giro win, but he also has so much class. Our respect for Basso, and each other, is what drives this team and makes us push to be the best each day."

Basso's team manager and mentor Bjarne Riis has always valued teamwork. "Basso's win proved he was the strongest rider in the race and that he had maximum support from the strongest team at the Giro," he said. "Teamwork is always at the core of our values, which we put into practice every day, and look forward to applying at the Tour de France.

"Our German attacker Jens Voigt dominated the early stages of the Giro for the team and could have very well won a stage or two, as could have Carlos Sastre who was second in the 2005 Vuelta a España.

"Giovanni Lombardi was a key rider acting as Basso's "bodyguard" throughout the race, helping to steer Ivan through the chaotic and sometimes dangerous bunch sprints at the finish. Ivan could often be found glued right on Lombardi's wheel in these situations, protected from other riders in the tightly grouped peloton or from the sometimes harsh elements."

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