'Paco' Wrolich happy to be heading to Portugal

By Susan Westemeyer

Austrian Peter 'Paco' Wrolich is ready to return to racing after crashing out of the Tour of California last month. The Gerolsteiner sprinter will be riding the Volta ao Santarem and then either Milano-Sanremo or Rund um Köln. "Both races are extremely important for me, but I can only ride one of them."

Only two kilometres into the neutralized zone of California's fourth stage, the 33 year-old went down face first. Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's personal physician sewed his face back up, but the bigger problem was the bruised ribs. "By great exertion I still have some pains in my ribs, but that gets better ever day."

He is glad to be riding in Portugal for more reasons than one, he wrote on his website, peterwrolich.at. "At any rate, I am happy that we can ride in Portugal at all, after the UCI threatened us before the start of Paris-Nice. Those responsible shouldn't carry out their fights on the heads of the riders, because all we want to do is ride races. Besides, there is enough time over the winter to solve the problems. Unfortunately, this time isn't used. It is bad for cyclists that this fight between the ASO and UCI escalates at this time. I hope that at least they find a practical solution which will help cycling."

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