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Bettini hopeful for Belgian Ardennes

Il Grillo

Il Grillo (Image credit: Elmar Krings)

Paolo Bettini (Quick.Step), who rode the Dutch Amstel Gold Race in the front but finally couldn't make it to the finish line first, was disappointed after the race on Sunday but also looked at the bright side. "I proved that this race can suit me; and it would have been another beautiful pearl in my collection," the Olympic champion told Tuttobicisport. "But you can't always win... Moreover, at a certain moment in the race I didn't feel that my legs were responding very well, and in the finale, nobody wanted to chase."

CSC's Fränk Schleck, who won the ProTour event, had made his decisive attack out of the group including Bettini some 10 kilometres to the finish. "But it reassures me that I'm in good condition with a view to the next races; the ones I really like: Flèche Wallonne and in particular, Liège-Bastogne-Liège," added Bettini, who hopes to win the Belgian Classic for a third time.

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