Paolini's desire stronger than ever

Luca Paolini

Luca Paolini (Image credit: Bettini Photo)

By Gregor Brown

Luca Paolini expects a strong start to the season after one of his best ever off-seasons in seven years as a professional. The rider from Milan has been spending the winter away from home to avoid harsh weather conditions.

"I have the desire to do well right away with the season's start. I respected the rules of the life of a cyclist closer this winter. I had a few sweets or Panettone less," said Paolini to Cyclingnews.

Paolini spent a week in Valencia, Spain, with teammate Stefano Garzelli prior to Team Acqua & Sapone's training camp in Sardegna, Italy. He plans to return to visit Garzelli with teammates Massimo Codol and Dario Andriotto this weekend for a two-week stay.

"Here in northern Italy it is very difficult to train. ... I heard from Garzelli that it is 20°C in Valencia, so it makes sense."

Paolini, winner of Trofeo Laigueglia and Coppa Placci in 2008, will start 2009 with the GP Etruschi, February 7.

"Then there is immediately the Méditerranéen Tour and Laigueglia. ... I would like to have a try in Méditerranéen."

RCS Sport will announce the teams to its key races towards the end of this month or early February. Paolini will know then if his Acqua & Sapone team will race in Tirreno-Adriatico, Milano-Sanremo and the Giro d'Italia.

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