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Corioni bests Pellizotti in beauty contest

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Miss Cycling 2009 dons her tiara.

Miss Cycling 2009 dons her tiara.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Claudio Corioni won with his superior dance moves.

Claudio Corioni won with his superior dance moves.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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The judges assemble to judge the Miss Cycling contest.

The judges assemble to judge the Miss Cycling contest.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Alessandro Petacchi looking dapper.

Alessandro Petacchi looking dapper.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Pellizotti gets a little help overcoming his shyness.

Pellizotti gets a little help overcoming his shyness.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Pellizotti and Santambrogio enjoy their moment in the spotlights.

Pellizotti and Santambrogio enjoy their moment in the spotlights.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Pellizotti sends a message to the crowd.

Pellizotti sends a message to the crowd.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Franco Pellizotti retired from stripping to judge the Miss Cycling contest.

Franco Pellizotti retired from stripping to judge the Miss Cycling contest.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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They seemed to all have a good time at it.

They seemed to all have a good time at it.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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One by one, the riders were subjected to tests of humiliation like dancing in one's underwear.

One by one, the riders were subjected to tests of humiliation like dancing in one's underwear.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Alessandro Petacchi didn't have to take his clothes off.

Alessandro Petacchi didn't have to take his clothes off.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Franco Pellizotti hopes that he'll win.

Franco Pellizotti hopes that he'll win.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Miss Cycling 2009: Maria Laura Fontana

Miss Cycling 2009: Maria Laura Fontana
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Franco Pellizotti and Mauro Santambrogio give the thumbs up to the competition.

Franco Pellizotti and Mauro Santambrogio give the thumbs up to the competition.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Francesco Chicchi impresses with a lunge.

Francesco Chicchi impresses with a lunge.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Mauro Santambrogio shows off his goods.

Mauro Santambrogio shows off his goods.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)

What could make five professional cyclists strip to their underwear and dance in front of a crowded nightclub? First, the club must be in Italy, and second, the event should be run by their sports management company, or so it seems.

At a gala hosted by the A&J Sports as Image management firm, Sprint Cycling magazine, Virtual Image and Ciclismo Online, five riders battled it out in a strip-tease to win the title "Mr. Cycling 2009". The burlesque was a humorous sideshow to the more hotly contested Miss Cycling contest won by Maria Laura Fontana.

On hand at the event were some of Italian cycling's top names, including Alessandro Petacchi, Gilberto Simoni and Daniele Nardello, but only Francesco Chicchi, Mauro Santambrogio, Claudio Corioni, neo-pro Davide Cimolai and Franco Pellizotti engaged in the strip-tease.

In a contest judged by the female members of the audience and measured by the volume of the applause, Corioni edged out Pellizotti for the title of Mr. Cycling 2009.

We include a full gallery of the event for your viewing pleasure. After seeing this, we're sure you will agree that the 2010 season can't come soon enough.